Yesterday I was honored to once again be the emcee at the Oregon Entrepreneurs Network (OEN) 2nd Annual Summit, featuring 15 successful Oregon entrepreneurs sharing their stories in 12-minute “TED-style” speeches.
The theme was the “School of Hard Knocks” – apt because the event was held in Portland’s cool and unique Kennedy School hotel and event center.
There was a diverse group of businesses represented, including restaurants, social media platforms,non-profits, clothing, bio-med, farming, software, and bicycles.
While there was a wide diversity in business type, there was a real commonality in the lessons these entrepreneurs shared - the “hard knocks” leadership lessons.
These were realizations that came directly from their experiences - revelations that pushed them past being just a “boss”, but into the higher strata of more human leader.
A strata that became a lynchpin to the successes they so graciously shared with us on this day.
There were 10 lessons in particular that struck a chord with me, and I’m sure they’ll do the same for you too.
- “Wherever you work, it has a culture. The question is, do you own your culture, or is culture happening to you? “- Luke Kanies, CEO, Puppet Labs (@)
- “The future is humble humans working with intelligent machines.” - Marshall Kirkpatrick, CEO, Little Bird (@)
- “Coach more. Shoot less.” - Jim Plymale, President, Clinicient ,Inc (@)
- “Respond to conflict with empathy and professionalism.” – Emma Mcilroy, CEO, Wildfang (@)
- “Bring other people into your business, don’t try to control everything.” - Micah Camden, owner of 17 restaurants, including @
- “Sharing knowledge is much more powerful. Things have meaning.” - Natalie Ramsland, co-founder, SweetPea Bicycles (@)
- “It’s not the idea that is brilliant, it’s the implementation that is brilliant” - Cory Carmen, founder, Carmen Ranch (@)
- “Don’t let outsiders influence the risk you take” – Ted Pappas, owner, Big Bottom Whiskey (@)
- “If you trust the world it will disappoint you. But if you don’t trust the world you’ll be absolutely miserable.”- Greg Bell, Founder, Water The Bamboo Center for Leadership (@)
- “You must have confidence to take creative risks. Humility helps us learn from the mistakes we dare to make.” – Sam Purdue, CEO, Indow Windows (@)
It was an inspiring day, and I’m already looking forward to next year.