Casting A Vision for Supporting Entrepreneurship
At our Meet & Greet event on May 15th, I had the opportunity to share with attendees our big vision statement for the WT Enterprise Center and the six key initiatives to accomplish that vision. We believe so strongly in this vision and the work we are doing, we wanted to share the highlights with those who could not attend the event or wanted a re-cap of the presentation. So, here’s the spark notes version! If you get excited by the content and want to be involved in the entrepreneur community at the EC, please reach out to us! Entrepreneurship is a community sport after all!
We often hear the term – begin with the end in mind. It’s really important to have clarity on that future goal in order to ensure you’re directing current actions and decisions to align with the end in mind. We celebrated where we have been as an organization over the past 18 years, took a deep dive in understanding where we are now and took time to envision what we want the future to look like for our organization and the impact we could have in our region. The following vision statement is a reflection of those efforts and the goal of where we want to be in the next three years.
WT Enterprise Center is the lead entrepreneur support organization in the Texas Panhandle.
In order to accomplish that vision, we’ve established 6 Key Initiatives to focus and align our decisions, actions, resources, time and partnerships with.
Initiative #1 – Offer more technology and commercialization services
Technology companies in this region currently do not have a strong support system of resources, access to capital and programming to help them sustain rapid growth and long-term success. We are focused on leveraging our strengths to fill that gap with a new accelerator program, connecting corporates to startups, building relationships to connect entrepreneurs to more capital and offering programs to help commercialize research and technology concepts.
Initiative #2 – Provide quality resources for entrepreneur development
Meeting entrepreneurs where they are on their journey of growing an existing business or launching a new one is very important to us! This initiative is focused on providing valuable business coaching, training programs, quality content, access to industry experts, EC community events and more…to help the entrepreneur develop their skills and knowledge to take their business to the next level of growth.
Initiative #3 – Develop more opportunities to connect entrepreneurs to capital
Access to capital has always been one of the top pain points for entrepreneurs in the Texas Panhandle. It’s not because there is a lack of capital in the region, it’s due to a lack of connectivity between entrepreneurs and investors. We are working hard to close that gap by facilitating relationships with investors in the region. Giving them the opportunity to see quality deals and giving entrepreneurs the opportunity to gain valuable capital. We are also focusing our efforts on more defined programs and events that create opportunities for entrepreneurs to showcase their businesses to regional and national investors.
Initiative #4 – Connect community to innovation
Entrepreneurship is a community sport. We want to encourage the community to get involved in supporting the growth of local companies and championing entrepreneur success. Whether it’s serving as a mentor, making a referral to a friend or neighbor who could benefit from our added support, or simply attending events to encourage them. Startups are creating the majority of new jobs and have a very large impact on local economies. The cities and communities that are rallying around their entrepreneur ecosystems are thriving! We believe our community already does a phenomenal job of supporting each other and we want to provide opportunities to connect those champions to the entrepreneurs who need their spirit! Amarillo can absolutely be a place where innovation isn’t a surprise, it’s expected.
Initiative #5 – Support the advancement of youth entrepreneurship
We believe our community, economy and nation’s future success depends on us supporting and developing the next generation of entrepreneurs and leaders. We are dedicated to providing our regional school systems, colleges and universities with the training and resources they need to help develop the next generation of entrepreneurs. We currently offer and will remain focused on providing a variety of services from class visits, tours of the Enterprise Center, trainings, entrepreneur days, business plan competition aid, consulting, pitch events, and more to encourage and support youth entrepreneurship.
Initiative #6 – Continue to be champions of economic development in the region
The majority of everything we do at the Enterprise Center impacts economic development in the region. Job creation and revenue are very important but we also know the true impact is much more than that. Industry diversification, workforce development, corporate engagement, growing our own, attracting more investment to the region, retaining talent, and developing our entrepreneurs, all play an important role to our sustainable growth. We are committed to being great community partners and ecosystem builders so that Amarillo continues to be a great place to grow a business.
With our vision and initiatives in mind, we are excited and prepared to lead the efforts on supporting entrepreneur development and inspiring innovation in the Texas Panhandle. We invite you to take part in building up our entrepreneur community and rally behind the mission of Helping People Build Great Companies.