Today I’m going to talk about what I consider to be one of the most attractive qualities in people (both guys and gals)… and one of the biggest driving forces for doing epic things in our life and as entrepreneurs here in Roseburg.
My wife and I were at the art festival a while back here in town and we were strolling through the art show. One of the most fascinating things to me is how two people can look at the exact same thing… and see it in totally different ways. For some reason, I really can’t remember a piece of art that I’ve ever seen that I thought was just downright terrible. I’m sure there were some… but my mind tends to lock on what’s great about stuff. The uniqueness, quirkiness, and creativity is what I see… and I love it. But some people I know well tend to look at the things they don’t like about something first, and totally miss the beauty in the piece.
Just two sides of the same coin. Neither is wrong.
So just recently something hit me, and I realized that this quality is perhaps one of the most powerful qualities that we as entrepreneurs can have. Not just for our businesses… but for the impacts we can make on our communities as well.
By the nature of being the guy behind the local young entrepreneur group (which is growing fast) and theLoft entrepreneur workspace downtown, I’m invited on a lot of boards, groups, projects, etc. I’ve had to say no to most of them these days with 3 young kids, a rapidly growing company, and other commitments (mountain biking is important after all)… but the one thing that I’ve noticed in many of these groups and efforts is they’ll come up to me and say how much more excited they are about the project / the future now after we talked. Or they’ll have this newfound smile and energy to get great things done that they maybe didn’t have before. I don’t think it’s necessarily the ideas that I bring that cause that… I think it’s mainly the optimism and positivity from which those ideas come from.
Kinda like showing people the beauty in a piece of art when they may see just a normal painting.
For this reason, I’ve realized that one of the biggest contributions entrepreneurs can make to improving our community and our startup scene here… is simply to be a constant beacon of positivity and possibility for what you believe in and in the future of the Roseburg entrepreneur community. It attracts people. It excites people (often times into action). It catalyzes people and efforts and possibly helps them advance faster. It spreads like wildfire on a windy August afternoon. I can cite specific examples where successful entrepreneurs have moved here (when they could have lived anywhere) recently mainly because of that positive energy and optimism… and I can cite many examples of young entrepreneurs who were thinking of moving away from Roseburg, deciding to stay to grow their companies here because of that feeling of energy and optimism. It’s a powerful force. So powerful that the Roseburg entrepreneur scene is starting to get noticed at a state level and keeps coming up in conversations in Portland and Bend boardrooms. The head of the Oregon Entrepreneur Network (based in Portland) called me up a while back and said, “I keep hearing about great things happening in Roseburg… what the heck is happening down there?”. Yes, things are happening here… but it’s the wave of positivity and energy that is making them take note.