The topic of the first week of the CEU NYC module was entrepreneurship. Being one myself, I was highly interested in how do entrepreneurs operate in NYC.
After a week of courses and company visits, I have categorized takeaways in two groups: takeaways from the city culture in general and takeaways regarding entrepreneurs in particular. It seems to me that NYC entrepreneurs are highly shaped by the place where they live in.
The first insight regarding NYC culture is that this place is a very well organized: projects, big or small, seem to be deliberate, intentional and proactive. It is visible in the architecture, on the street, on the quality of food. NYC is continuously looking for improvement and uses cutting edge tools such as big data to remain competitive. Everybody talks about business and there is a competitive “vibe” that manifests in the way people express themselves.
The second takeaway is that New York entrepreneurs are hardworking people. “You have to fail to succeed” is their slogan and they take it seriously. The guest speakers we have met all talked about long periods of uncertainty and failure until they became successful. Persistence, hard work, resourcefulness, focus and competitiveness are the words I would use to describe the entrepreneurs we met this week.
The third takeaway derives of the previous two. The NYC culture shapes the path of starting businesses with its established institutions (best practices) and permeates their mindset in a way in which they don’t seem to be aware of any more, because they have become part of it. This makes NYC unique and distinct, and this can only be truly understood in such a short period of time through a course like this.