Feld Thoughts

Humans Just Don’t Understand Complex Systems

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A major incident has been declared in Bournemouth as crowds flock to the beach. Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images. My first reaction to this photo was “you’ve got to be f **g kidding me.”

Venture Deals Online Course – Summer 2020 Edition

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We are running the Venture Deals Online Course again this summer. But before I get to that, I want to highlight a blog post from a Black colleague. I’m getting, and reading, many of these each day.

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Expanding My Perspective

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I’ve become aware that my existing network creates and perpetuates systemic inequities. Rather than abandon my existing network, I’m investing time and energy in expanding my perspective and network through the various things I pay attention to and get involved in.

Book: The Startup Playbook

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If you are working on your first startup, this is the book for you. Hopefully, the Foreword I wrote reflects my belief in the quality and importance of this book.

Building Healthy Innovation Ecosystems for Your Projects

Speaker: Nick Noreña, Innovation Coach and Advisor, Kromatic

In this webinar, Nick Noreña will walk through an Innovation Ecosystem Model that he and his team at Kromatic have developed to help investors, heads of product, teachers, and executives understand how they can best support innovation in their own ecosystem. He'll also go over metrics we can use to measure the health of our ecosystems as we build more resources for innovators.

Female Contemporary Mentors of Mine

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In response to my post, Contemporary Mentors , a female reader of this blog who often sends me notes when I fall into a pattern of highlighting cis-het-white men, responded directly to the post with: I hope that you add more women and more diversity to your contemporary mentors.

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#BlackLivesMatter and What I’m Doing

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So that I’m unambiguous about my perspective, #BlackLivesMatter. Amy and I have been philanthropically supporting Progressive Public Policy and Social Justice Organizations for over 20 years.

Contemporary Mentors

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The phrase “contemporary mentors” popped into my head on loop number six of eight on my morning run. I’m training for a Covid marathon, which is 27 loops around my property.

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Techstars Entrepreneurship & Mental Health Series

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Techstars just released a 4-part original video series on entrepreneurship and mental health. I’m featured in one of the four short (< 10 minute) videos. If there was ever a moment in time that challenged our individual and collective mental health, it’s the Covid crisis.

Energize Colorado Free and Low-Cost Mental Health Care

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The Covid crisis has generated, or amplified, a number of separate crises. One of them is a mental health (or mental wellness) crisis. As humans, our entire way of living has been dramatically impacted by Covid.

Thoughts For VC Backed Companies Considering SBA/PPP Loans

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My partner Seth Levine recently put up an extremely thoughtful post titled SBA PPP Loans Aren’t for Everyone. Go read it now – I’ll be here when you get back. Seth references two other posts to read and consider.

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You are Not Alone

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On Wednesday 6/3 at 11am Energize Colorado will be launching our Mental Wellness initiative. While we already have a Mental Health Resource section up on the Energize Colorado , we are starting a weekly webinar series called Wellness Wednesdays.

The Valence Funding Network: Connecting Black Talent with Capital

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If you are a venture capitalist, I strongly encourage you to join the Valence Funding Network to provide Black founders with direct access to VCs. I’ve joined along with a number of my peers. Kobie Fuller at Upfront Ventures started Valence in the fall of 2019.

Please Wear a DIY Cloth Mask in Public

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The CDC finally issued guidance to Use of Cloth Face Coverings to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19. If you go out in public, please wear a “Cloth Face Covering.”

Book: So you want to talk about race

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I’m continuing my weekend reading goal of a book on racial equity. Last week was Kingonomics: Twelve Innovative Currencies for Transforming Your Business and Life Inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by Rodney Sampson who I’m partnering with on the #RacialEquityEcosystemPledge.

Most Warning Systems Do Not Warn Us That They Can No Longer Warn Us

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Since mid-March, I have received endless letters from companies and funds I’m an investor in with their thoughts on the Covid crisis. One of the best was from Paul Kedrosky and Eric Norlin of SK Ventures (one of our Partner Fund investments ).

Wise Words from C.S. Lewis in 1948

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The following from C. Lewis. was on my fraternity email list this morning. It was written in 1948 after the dawn of the atomic age. In one way we think a great deal too much of the atomic bomb. How are we to live in an atomic age?”

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Exponential Growth and Covid-19

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Most people don’t understand exponential growth. It can be counterintuitive and is easily misinterpreted. Understanding it is particularly important right now around Covid-19.

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Launching Energize Colorado

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I’m excited to announce the launch of Energize Colorado , a new Colorado-based non-profit to help energize companies in Colorado survive the Covid crisis and then thrive as we get the crisis under control.

The Unbearable Something of Q2 2020

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I woke up thinking “this has been the strangest quarter of my life.” ” I used to think in days, weeks, months, quarters, years, and decades. I stopped doing that around the time I turned 50 because I was exhausted from the rhythm.

What Day Is It?

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Amy just walked in to our shared office (the “Library”) and said something about it being Tuesday. It’s gloomy in Colorado today.

Seth Levine’s Practical Thoughts on the Covid Crisis

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In addition to his leadership at Foundry, the companies he’s involved in, a number of initiatives in Colorado generally and Longmont specifically, and with his family, my partner Seth Levine has written several excellent posts in around the Covid Crisis.

Misty Temperature Screening Assistant

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Misty Robotics’ goal is to create a robot platform (hardware and software) that any developer can use to build useful and immediately applicable robot applications. A number of early customers have started building solutions.

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Take Spring Break At Home For Two Weeks Starting Now

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By this point, I expect everyone who reads this blog is extremely familiar with the phrases “flatten the curve” and “social distancing.” ” If not, read Coronavirus: Why You Must Act Now right now.

What Is Complexity Science?

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As I caught up this morning on the posts in my new Startup Community community (over 1,000 people have already joined – that was a pleasant surprise – click here to join us ) I noticed one from a member from a founder in Adelaide.

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Feed the Frontlines Boulder

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A creative group of Boulder entrepreneurs, led by Vikas Reddy and Kyle Judah and inspired by San Franciso entrepreneurs/investors Frank Barbieri and Ryan Sarver have created and put into action a program that supports both frontline health workers and local independent restaurants.

Supporting the $1K Project

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A month ago, Alex Iskold emailed me about a new initiative that he started with Minda Brusse and a group of 20 volunteers called the $1K Project.

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Poetry: Pandemic

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Following is a poem titled Pandemic written by Lynn Ungar on 3/11/20. Thanks to Joanna Rupp at the University of Chicago for sending it to me. I like to read poetry out loud. It slows me down enough to relish the words.

Joint Statement by Colorado High-Tech Companies on COVID-19

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I’ve been involved with a number of leaders in the Colorado tech community since Wednesday morning as we’ve aggressively mobilized to address the Covid-19 crisis. Following is a joint statement that a bunch of us have signed on to.

Book: It’s About Damn Time

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My digital sabbaths are often running, reading, and napping days. That’s tomorrow for me as I’m feeling fried from another week. I’ve ordered (and received) most of the books from the NY Times Antiracist reading list along with a number of other recommendations.

The Three Crises

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While everyone I know feels the weight of being in the midst of the Covid crisis, we are actually dealing with the overlap of three linked crises. Understanding this, and putting it in historical context, has been helpful to me as I process real-time inputs and prioritize my activities.

Geared Up for Another Intense Covid Week

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It’s amazing the havoc a 120-nanometer organism can wreak on the human race. Someone said that every 24 hours feels like a week. That would put us at the end of the school year, which kind of feels like what has actually happened. I expect this week will be as intense as last week.

#LeadBoldly to #StoptheSpread of COVID-19

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A coalition of 250 CEOs and leaders (and growing by the hour) are asking our fellow business and civic leaders around America to #LeadBoldly and #StoptheSpread of COVID-19.

The Startup Community community

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My new book The Startup Community Way: Evolving and Entrepreneurial Ecosystem is coming out this month ( pre-order it here.). At the same time, the 2nd edition of my book Startup Communities: Building an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Your City is also coming out ( pre-order it here.).

The Disorientation of Exiting Phase 1

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We are starting to exit phase 1 of the Covid Crisis in the United States. If you find the whole thing extremely disorienting, you have my empathy. In mid-April, I was getting used to the Stay at Home mode. I’d joke about how I was made for this and was never leaving my house again.

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The Racial Equity Ecosystem Pledge

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Today, I participated in the Juneteeneth 4.0 Celebration that was hosted by OHUB , ThePlug , and Living Cities and led by Rodney Sampson. In addition to being part of a panel, I made several commitments as part of the #RacialEquityEcosystemPledge. Here’s the fact sheet released by OHUB today.

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Covid-19 Podcasts About Crises and Mental Health

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Over the past week, I’ve done a handful of podcasts to help entrepreneurs, leaders, and employees at startups to help think through how to respond in a crisis. I’ve requested that anything I do right now on this front is made public, so if anyone is interested, they can watch them.

Venture Deals Online Course – Spring 2020 Registration Is Open

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We are running the Venture Deals Online Course again. Registration is now open and it runs from March 8, 2020 – May 1, 2020. It’s produced by Techstars and Kauffman Fellows. We’ve run the course six times now and have had over 25,000 people take it.

Bias: At-Home Film Screening Event

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Amy and I, along with Techstars, were Executive Producers for Robin Hauser ‘s film “ bias “ It’s an extremely helpful documentary around understanding unconscious bias.

Leadership is Pulling Together, Not Tearing Apart

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Our Colorado governor, Jared Polis, displayed an amazing act of leadership in his response to what I consider a question posed in an extreme and divisive way yesterday. Colorado Gov. Jared Polis gets choked up when he's asked about people who have compared COVID-19 stay-home orders to Nazism.

Celebrate Governor Polis’s Birthday With Me

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On May 14th at 5:30pm, a group of us are going to have a virtual birthday party for Colorado Governor Jared Polis. I’m co-chairing the party with my wife Amy Batchelor, my partner Seth Levine, his wife Greeley Sachs, and our friends Mo and Jennifer Siegel.

Covid-19: Senator Bill Frist, M.D. Second Opinion Podcast

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In the midst of a crisis like the Covid-19 one that is unfolding around the world, it’s very hard to separate the signal from the noise.

Black Lives Matter and My Fear About Short Attention Spans

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While I was trying to get my soul to reset a little yesterday, I worried about short attention spans. As humans, we naturally have short attention spans that are amplified by the extremely short attention span of the media.