Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Very short video, two startup stories.

Two startup stories back to back, takes less than 3 minutes to watch both. The first is how it seems to me how nearly everything that actually gets off the ground gets started, "Some times it's not about planning." The second it sounds like is still a work in progress, my hunch is... you can guess. We'll see in the next few months. Bogus (in my opinion) numbers on startups were published here in Colorado last week, Secretary of State office made media release that lots and lots of startups took off. Really? I'm going to dig deeper into the published numbers and will get back to you. In the mean time, watch this video and post a comment below or call me and let's talk. John Wren (303)861-1447

Monday, July 28, 2014

Want to get hired as employee or consultant?

When most people decide to get a new job, what do the do?

They do what most say to do, start working on their resume.

I don't think the resume makes much difference for people who really want to go to work now. 

What does make a difference? 

Phone calls to network (real network, people who know you and your work, not idiots who swap business cards) get referral, call, meet, close. Goes fast for those who really want to go to work, and without that real desire to go to work now, as a consultant, employee, a spouse, or best friend, nothing is going to happen no matter how perfect the resume or career path or industry and company knowledge, or any of the mind numbing distractions that hold us back.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Coworking space more than just renting a desk.

Here is a list to how we make Creative Density a coworking space.

 How we made Creative Density People First:

    1. We started with a community first and then got a space. The members were involved on the early decisions of the space, the location, and what our vision was from the very start. The space was just a gather spot for the community that was already formed. Three years later this has had beneficial rippling effects that continues to form our culture.
    2. We give high-fives and are open about it. We tell people up front that we are a group of smart and friendly people that want to get to know you. We introduce people, say hey to them, and aren’t afraid to give a high-five.  It’s amazing how a simple introduction and a morning hello opens people up. I, as the community manager, also like to celebrate victories community members may have.
    3. The coworkers create casual social activities for a break in work. We play yards games.  They are a great casual social activity that lasts about 10 to 15 minutes and doesn’t require too much skill. We found this activity to be the best catalyst to creating a community. Friday’s take-yourself-to-lunch events are very popular too. None of these activities are required and people should feel pressure to participate, but it’s sets a signal of openness that is carried throughout the space.
    4. We listen to the community for events. We hosting monthly(ish) educational meetings decided by the community. The most recent guests are lawyers, financial planners, website builders, and health insurers for independents. We only do events when the community states a desire for one or interest in a topic that is brought forward. There have been too many times we hosted many events during the week and it was disturbing for the community.
    5. Coworking Voices Roundtable. This is a community meeting where we discuss policies of the space and brainstorm ways that we can be a better community to make us professionally and personally stronger. This is a more formal way for us to evaluate how we are doing things and to let the community vote on changes.
    6. Assume yes. Creative Density should feel like your work clubhouse. We get the barriers out of the way so once people come in they can get comfortable and hopefully leave their signature on the space. We want the community to form the space.  Can I hang up a poster here? Yes. Can I host my bookclub after hours? Yes. Can we I hang a sign about starting a mastermind group? Yes. Can I have a candle? No…sorry.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Grassroots innovation in large organizations.

This is worth a listen if you're part of or work with a large organization.

Interesting discussion of the key quality needed by leaders to encourage grassroots innovation, other ways ideas are encouraged (it's not a suggestion box.)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Starting a business in Colorado? Free online help from Colorado.

Online tutorial from the Colorado Secretary of State's Office, Starting a Business in Colorado
Use the Secretary of State's website to check and make sure the name you have chosen is not already in use.  To do this, go to the Business Database.  The tutorial also includes a link to this database. 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Starting in a new direction? Free startup workshops.

To: Anyone interested in startup. (Start of a new career, project or campaign, or new business.)

The name of the Friday meeting has been changed to Denver Capitol Hill IDEA Café.

I'll be using the IDEA Café tomorrow and next Friday to help me make decisions about further changes in my work, it would be great to have you with us.

Please take a minute to RSVP yes or no for tomorrow, ok? Click below:

Denver Capitol Hill IDEA Startup Café
Panera Bread, 13th & Grant St.
2 to 3:30 p.m. Free.

Questions? Want to start a similar workshop in cooperation with your local chamber or other group? Call me at (303)861-1447, we could meet before or after the meeting tomorrow or next Friday.


Sunday, July 06, 2014

New DU Chancellor (see her TED Talk here below.)

Just followed @ChancellorChopp "BestCollege President" I'm @uofdenver , BA'69 MBA'80 Her TED talk great, see
— John Wren +++ Start! (@JohnSWren) July 6, 2014

Thursday, July 03, 2014

New leader of University of Denver

After big, big successes as President of Colgate and Swathmore, Dr. Rebecca Chopp, inspired by Robert Putnam author of Bowling Alone, the book that's triggered my work for the last two decades, comes to the University of Denver. Here's why:

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

What is the Hope for Humanity? A discussion of technology, politics, and...

Bill Wilson, founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, in 1955 towards the end of his life said, "Spiritual rebirth may be the only alternative to extinction." Wilson, Frank Buchman, and their predecessors going back 2000 years have been advocating for this same thing, that truly inspired action is our hope, that we learn how to listen to God and then just do it, see