Irish Entrepreneurs: Serial Founders And Flounders...
At the Dublin Web Summit there's an ever expanding group of successful entrepreneurs that have founded great companies and won very large exits. There's also many founders who have floundered but are back in the game, more than willing to try, try and try again.
I was fortunate to be invited to The Flounders Dinner, an annual event that collects a couple of dozen founders for a dinner where they exchange hilarious stories and advice. Here are some scenes from this year's dinner organized by our tireless host Paul Hayes, Games Ireland. It's held in parallel to The Founders dinner, an invite-only event for successful founders.
Noel Toolan, global branding expert regales the Flounders with a story about working in Saudi Arabia.
Left, Flounders organizer Paul Hayes, with Noel Toolan.
My contribution to the evening was to say that innovation centers should be judged by the quality and the quantity of their failures. Because if you aren't failing you aren't trying. Silicon Valley produces more failures than anywhere else.
Also, all startups are cultural artifacts, they have to tell great stories, stories that are truthful and authentic, they have to be products of their environment and of their times. The Irish tell great stories -- they'll do well at this startup game.
I'm proud to be a member of the Flounders (me on far right next to Pat Phelan, one of my favorite Irish entrepreneurs).