mandag 15. mars 2010

Twitter CEO Evan Williams to entrepreneurs: Think big, look outside the Valley

Towards the end of his keynote interview at the South by Southwest Interactive conference in Austin today, Twitter co-founder and chief executive Evan Williams talked about the advice he gives to entrepreneurs. For one thing, he encourages them to find ideas that are really big and disruptive, not just potential moneymakers.
The test, Williams said, is that your product or service should be the end of a sentence that begins, “Wouldn’t it be awesome if …?” And that sentence shouldn’t be, “Wouldn’t it be awesome if I had a million dollars?”
Williams said he’s the kind of entrepreneur motivated by “creating things in the world that didn’t exist before,” but he acknowledged that there are others who are more motivated to make money. (And Twitter-haters might argue that if Williams had been a little more interested in money, the company might have found a business model by now.) So perhaps it’s best to think of this as “advice for entrepreneurs who want to be like Evan Williams.”
He also said he encourages entrepreneurs to not just think big, but also to think differently. Sometimes that can be hard if you’re in Silicon Valley — it’s a great area to build a technology company, but it’s easy to get locked into the Valley mindset, he said.
“A lot of the most interesting companies come outside of Silicon Valley,” Williams said. Offering Chicago-based companies 37Signals and Threadless as examples, he said, “They’re not sucked into the thinking of Silicon Valley.”
Companies: Twitter
People: Evan Williams

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