We Got This Far, Now What?
I’ve been thinking a lot about what’s next for our community now that the fifth year of Big Omaha is behind us.
It seems to me the fifth year is a sign of the potential for what’s ahead. It’s also a good reason to pause, take a look at where we’re at, and make course corrections or adjustments to make sure we not only continue moving forward, but moving forward faster, and with greater impact and results.
The point has been made before by Brad Feld, to which I strongly agree, that it takes a critical mass - which isn’t that many - maybe a half dozen people who are committed to building a community. And committed for the long haul, not just the next few months or even a year.
So as we’ve arrived the an important stage in our community, what do you think is needed?
What organizations or people are flying under the radar and need to be called upon to get engaged?
What’s next for us as a city and region?
How can we leverage Omaha’s unique assets to build something of lasting value and impact?
Who are the other leaders that are interested in making a dent in the community?
What’s lacking and / or needs to be improved?
Let’s look at this time as the end of the first quarter, and take a step back to look at what’s happened over the last few years, and double down on making the next five years and beyond even better.
“Interesting opportunities start to show up when the world knows your passions and talents.” - via Scott Dinsmore
The most direct route to happiness is through creating joy for someone else.
Building Out the Roster
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how to develop and build out the roster of leaders within the startup community. It’s vital to any organization, cause or group to always be looking to the next group of folks who will take the community into the next generation, and it’s no different within a startup community.
What tips, tricks or concepts have you seen implemented that help to build out the roster?
“The next time you’re driving across Goddamn Whatever, Iowa, stop and think: This field that I’m standing in front of…you know, someone toiled over that for generations. And while I sit on my big ass clicking a mouse all day, it really puts things into perspective of how lucky and how thankful I should really be every hour.”
— Aaron Draplin, AKA Draplin Design Co.
And on that note, his Field Notes Memo Archive page is fucking awesome. I could listen to that dude talk about corn and design (but mostly corn, of course) all day.
charity: water’s impact & my 35th birthday
We did it!
A huge thank you to Big Wheel Brigade & Rahul Gupta, Aaron Shaddy, Ted Rheingold, Robert Murphy, Hunter Walk, Greg Harris, Dan Gilbert, Maggie Foggin, Alan Tipp, Greg Bailey, Adam Haun, John Meyer, Andrew Nauenberg, Jeff Nieto, Kevin McGinnis, Danny Schreiber, Kelsey Janda, Bryan Findell, Miranda Bouck, Will & Graham Davidson (thanks Ann & Don!), Lonnie Michael Jr., Antonio Neves, Matt Glynn, Kate Jankowski and a final thanks to Shakil Khan for getting us to the finish line!
Its probably been close to three years ago now when I first heard of charity: water, and the work they were involved in to bring clean, safe drinking water to so many individuals and families in need oversees.
The way they told the story of their work in both an elegant and inspiring manner was impressive. Their model of 100% of a donor’s dollars going directly to projects was refreshing and something that I could get behind and support.
After learning more about the impact of charity: water through so many of my friends, I was overjoyed when Scott Harrison agreed to come in to share his story at Big Omaha 2010.
The community blew away my expectations for what I thought a campaign for charity: water would look like. And when all was said and done, over $15,000 had been raised - as well as some solid connections which were forged between other some of the other presenters and the organization while at the event. And who could forget Scott’s personal story and hearing about charity: water’s journey over the last several years.
Seeing the photos of the villages and projects that our community had a hand in making a reality is humbling.
People within the Maitrik, Dawito and Lekamit Villages in Ethopia were forever changed for the generosity and spirit that our community accomplished together through the Big Omaha & Silicon Prairie News community.
Since that time, I’ve remained very involved with the charity: water and its efforts including watching several friends give up their birthdays as well as the opportunity to attend the charity: ball.
That brings us to today - teetering just hours between 2012 and 2013 - and at which point just days into the new year, I’ll turn the ripe old, (or young), age of 35 on January 11th.
I’ve announced that I’m giving up my 35th birthday for charity: water and it’s truly amazing to see those who have already jumped on board to help support the continuing work of such an life-changing organization.
I’m amazingly inspired by those friends who have already hopped on board to put the campaign on a great track as we head into the new year.
A huge thank you to Big Wheel Brigade & Rahul Gupta, Aaron Shaddy, Ted Rheingold, Robert Murphy, Hunter Walk, Greg Harris, Dan Gilbert, Maggie Foggin, Alan Tipp, Greg Bailey, Adam Haun, John Meyer, Andrew Nauenberg, Jeff Nieto, Kevin McGinnis, Danny Schreiber, Kelsey Janda, Bryan Findell, Miranda Bouck, Will & Graham Davidson (thanks Ann & Don!), Lonnie Michael Jr., Antonio Neves, Matt Glynn, Kate Jankowski and a final thanks to Shakil Khan for getting me to the finish line!
178 lives changed. That’s truly inspiring.
Let’s make 2013 even better than the last. Onward!