When talking to local software engineers, sales people, and entrepreneurs that come through the Atlanta Tech Village, I find a common pattern where the individual starts their career at a non-startup company and then eventually gets recruited by a startup. After a taste of the startup experience, the individual never wants to go back to a regular business. Now, once the individual is in the startup ecosystem, every 2-4 years they move to a different startup and bring their experience and expertise to a new opportunity.
This is all good and well but it doesn’t significantly grow the startup community since most startups fail and the talent gets recycled into the community (which is fine and healthy). What does grow the startup community is breakout startups. Startups that create 100+ jobs locally bring a ton of talent into the startup community. Software engineers get recruited from all kinds of backgrounds, especially right out of school. Sales reps get recruited from insurance jobs, telcom positions, and other traditional sales roles. And, of course, entrepreneurs that started ventures that didn’t work out join the breakout startup, provide great leadership for a few years, and then go on to start their next thing.
Having more startups helps grow the entrepreneurial ecosystem, but a greater impact comes from breakout startups that bring in tons of talent and introduces them to a better way of life.
What else? What are your thoughts on breakout startups growing the ecosystem of talent?