Next to my desk at the Atlanta Tech Village I have a framed newspaper cover from a 1990 The Atlanta Journal announcing that Atlanta had been awarded the 1996 Olympics. On the cover, the headline says “Word-class! Proud city brings home the gold” and then, on a lower section, the headline reads “We finally won something!”
The Atlanta Olympics headlines and sentiment could have been written by every startup community across the country, outside of Silicon Valley. Everyone is proud of their city, yet is surprised when they finally “win” at something in the startup scene (raise a big round, have a nice exit, build a new facility, etc). Where’s the belief? Where’s the confidence?
One of the things I’m accused of is having too much confidence, especially when I lack information. My goal isn’t to provide false hope, rather, I have a strong internal locus of control and belief in my gut. I tell it like I see it. When it comes to the Atlanta startup community, I have tremendous pride and belief that we have all the necessary ingredients to be a top 10 city in the country. Regardless, I’d like to see more entrepreneurs with community pride also believe they can make their startup ecosystem even better.
What else? What are your thoughts on people having community pride without enough belief?
Here’s a photo of the newspaper cover: