I am attending EmTech09 this week and the first thing you realize at these conferences is that there are a lot of smart
people out there working on technology that we couldn’t even dream of. Wim Sweldens of Lucent led off yesterday’s session.
His workshop was definitely eye opening and was a start to getting the audience to participate and determine the direction
and outcome of the seminar.
The goal was for the audience to come up with the 10 most important items in getting a new technology idea from the lab to
the market. At face value this may appear easy, but you really have to think about everything that goes into launching a new
venture and making it successful.
The initial list that they audience came up with was:
- Culture – You must have a company culture of innovation
- Willingness to Fail – Learning and iteration
- Rapid Prototyping – Get to market as fast as possible in order to solicit feedback from customers. It is more
important to do 10 things fast to get to market then to wait and do two things perfect.
- Unmet Needs and Customer Relevance
- Scalability – Example would be cloud computing
- Collaboration and Team – You can get speed and quality with a high caliber team. This is probably the most
important of the top 10.
- Targeting and Marketing – Creating an ecosystem of going to market.
- Idea and Intellectual Property
- Technology and Business Strategy
- Government (regulation, laws) – Know the rules of the game.
The question that Wim posed after this list was completed was, "why does there have to be a top 10?" He asked the audience
if there were similarities in the top 10 that could be combined. For example Culture and Team are the same, so you could
eliminate one. Technology and Scalability could also be combined.
The combining of the top 10 continued until a new list of a top 3 emerged:
Looking at the list above, what is your top priority when starting a new tech venture? The answer should be obvious; it is
PEOPLE. Without the right team in place we can only get so far on our own. The wrong team is almost a guaranteed recipe for
failure. Spend the extra time during the first days of the venture to make sure you have the best, and if you don’t, set out
to get the best to give your new technology company the greatest opportunity for success.
About the Author:
Damien is the Founder and CEO of FindAnyFloor.com as well as several other technolgy businesses specializing in social media and search.