Entrepreneur types, w00t and Smarta!

Well, it’s finally Friday! And although I’m quite looking forward to a weekend without my back killing me (cheers to Eoghan who by the way is a great physio if you need one in London), this has been a pretty productive week. Amazingly enough after my mention of School of Everything, I went along to a w00t session last night for social innovators looking to share ideas and help; and it was run by the School of Everything guys, which was a great coincidence. Still not quite sure what w00t is, but got invited to the Disruptive Social Innovators event in Feb which sounds great. Definitely like what they’re doing, and particularly Andy Gibson’s new political philosophy of Sociablism! Even found out there is actually a School for Social Entrepreneurs. Kept trying to push away mental images of Jack Black and the School of Rock, but it really highlights how far the capitalist circle has turned.

Anyway the long of short of both my conversations with Howard and Andy is that it really is important to be able to articulate at least one core activity that outlines how the site would work. I still reckon it’s important to finish the landscape analysis I was working on to clarify gaps in what’s available, and also spend a bit of time understanding the needs and motivations of our target audiences to narrow down options before we do this, but maybe it is something worth running in parallel. Maybe I could try and arrange a brainstorm session with any of you that would be interested in a little ‘helper-helpee’ role play to imagine out some scenarios.

I guess I’m in the unusual situation of:

  1. Starting out alone on something of this scale
  2. Formally kicking off a project that starts with creating ideas rather than delivering well defined ones – every sensible project manager’s nightmare!
  3. Targeting the web without actually being a ‘tech ninja’ – yes it is a well known term I only heard of a couple of days ago!! Google it :D

On the topic of generating ideas, I’m thinking of shifting the model towards focusing on creating a generic platform that develops a network of global volunteers overlaid with a user experience that allows niche interactions like the Urban Survival Project. Meantime the actual Urban Survival Project could evolve into a shell Social Enterprise whose core goal is to fund, create and develop new projects that make a positive difference to the quality of urban life, particularly for the more vulnerable members of inner-city society. More on this later. As a first step I’ve added the domains iVoluntr.org & i-Voluntr.org to my grab bag in case we decide to go that way. Will explore this further as we go along.

Meriem also pointed me to an
Entrepreneur test set up by Rachel Elnaugh, who it turns out is one of the women off Dragon’s Den. Check it out if you like. Beware she uses terms like Alpha and Zeta, which should’ve been a warning sign, but I needed a break so gave it a shot out of curiousity. First note – if you’re not a fan of tests where you have to order multiple options that all seem equally applicable this will pain you. And of course there’s always a few in there that simply don’t apply at all – on any scale. Leaves you desperately trying to figure out which order won’t conclude you to be no kind of entrepreneur at all!

Rachel has
9 different types of entrepreneur – yes 9!

  1. Ultrapreneur
  2. Alphapreneur
  3. Passionpreneur
  4. Sociopreneur
  5. Bosspreneur
  6. Execpreneur
  7. Dadpreneur
  8. Mumpreneur
  9. Safepreneur

I suppose if you can’t add to the brimming pool of jargon that already exists, you haven’t really left your mark. One guess around which one Rachel is believes she is. The order and naming says it all ;)

(source –
Rachel Elnaugh)

I quite wanted to be a ‘mumpreneur’ for the sake of bucking a trend, but apparently I’m a ‘sociopreneur’ which I guess is about right; and so while I apparently want to ‘change the world’, it seems that Rachel has decided I ‘may lack drive and commercial skills‘. A few years here or there of business consulting to multinational corporations don’t count I suppose. More than a touch of the old star sign bullsh*t about the categorisation I fear! Nevertheless an interesting bit of fun.

Finally a quick plug. Meriem has been working on a website called Smarta specifically for Entrepreneurs of all sorts. It’s a great idea that is being very well executed. Still very early on but if you’re thinking of setting up your own thing, it’s worth keeping an eye out for. She’s also setting up a blog which goes live in a couple of weeks too, so watch this space!

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