You Just Have to Follow
I've met a lot of entrepreneurs in my 27 years of working at and with start-ups. Good entrepreneurs have natural leadership capabilities and are often visionaries. They have high energy and can attract and build strong, effective teams. Most of them are great at selling their idea to investors, employees, partners, etc. Even with all the strong entrepreneurs, there are a select few who you meet and just are compelled to follow. They excel in the areas mentioned above and then have an intangible quality that makes them someone that people are compelled to follow.
These types of people can be in other careers besides high-tech. The most recent person I met with these qualities is Diane Paulus, the new Artistic Director at the American Repertory Theater. (Disclaimer: I am on the Advisory Board of the ART and have been a subscriber since 1982). Diane is like a force of nature. Anyone who meets her is compelled to follow. And, as befits her position, she is innovative and creative. Although not a salesperson per se, she has no problem selling her vision.
Today, the ART unveiled their 2009-2010 season. The vision is big and bold -- multi-performance festivals that expand the ART into the community and linking to other arts organizations around the Boston area. At the press conference today that showcased the new season, there was real excitement in the air. I can't wait for these productions to come alive, starting in the fall. There is nothing like a great live theater performance, and Diane is known for getting the audience involved, as she describes in this video from the ART web site.
See you at the theater!