FROM 1999 THROUGH 2004, I was part of three different start-ups. One dealt with Y2K software. Another involved an animation and post-production studio. Another had a very clever intelligent digital signage concept. All three were vetted for their export potential. One earned High Potential Start-up status. All collapsed for different reasons.
On the heels of Tech Crunch 50 and Bizcamp Dublin last week, I'm thinking about those past ventures because the experiences I learned in them were part of talks I gave in several Irish meet-ups like the one at the left. Additionally, my painful experiences become interwoven into the third level creative multimedia programme where I teach.
Currently, I'm surprised by the clear lines of disconnect that continue to exist between the people in charge of energising Ireland and those on the ground who are working hard to bring clever ideas to market. I think it's inevitable that civil servants think in a top-down manner. They set up procedures that they hope will vet applicants but those administrative procedures reduce creatives to paper-pushers. That's what happened to me during many days working to bring products to market at those three start-ups. I often realised I should have been trying to generate real business by using my contact managment software instead of filling in the blanks for yet another grant application.
After reading a few related items today, I'm left with a few conclusions, gleaned from my professional experience.