Leaving a legacy – entrepreneurship and education

I’ve moved from the West Coast over to the Mid-West, if you want to take a look at how the 50 States of the US are grouped, here’s a good image.  The temperature here is pushing 30, with high humidity which is a different heat!  Kansas City has some outstanding art, particularly the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.

KC art

Kauffman Foundation

Dane, Jonathan, Mette and the rest of the team were fantastic hosts at the inspiring Kauffman Foundation which has three focuses — educational achievement, entrepreneurial success and Kansas City.  The founder Ewing Kauffman, believed that entrepreneurship and education were critical in developing self-sufficient people and a vibrant economy and society.  Ewing Kauffman was an entrepreneur who founded Marion Laboratories Inc and the Kauffman Foundation is one of many enduring legacies.  The closest thing I can think of in NZ is the Tindall Foundation.

To say the Kauffman Foundation are experts on research and the practical application of it are understatements.  If I had to sum up what I learned it is this: 0-5 year old companies + talent = main source of job growth.

A couple of my favourite insights:

If you’re interested in this type of stuff I recommended signing up to their policy digest…don’t be put off by the ‘policy’ word…they are very easy two page reads, most with infographics.

I also managed to sit in on a talk from John Tammy about his new book Popular Economics, his view on barriers to growth were taxes, regulation, money and non-free trade.

There’s something about those ‘C’ words that keep popping up – collaborating, coordinating, connecting, convening.  Smart people working together on innovative solutions for complex problems.  Not once so far have I heard words like structure or process mentioned.


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