Breaking Down Silos and Building the Detroit-Ann Arbor Connection
Last December, Xconomy hosted a dinner in Detroit where we invited about two dozen startup founders, investors, and other stakeholders from Southeast Michigan’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. Though we brought the group together to share stories from the trenches, it quickly emerged that our guests wanted to discuss something else: How the innovation ecosystems in Detroit and Ann Arbor could better communicate, collaborate, and commiserate.
In August, we held another dinner–in Ann Arbor this time–and while we had an informative discussion, it felt like we had only reached the tip of the iceberg. Now, we’d like to bring the innovation community at large into the conversation by holding an unconference-style gathering.
Facilitating this group discussion will be Rich Sheridan of Menlo Innovations in Ann Arbor. The idea is to talk about what’s on people’s minds right now and hope the open exchange will move the discussion from the realm of ideas to the realm of action.
Following the unconference will be our annual Meet the Xconomists reception. This reception is our way of making new connections and saying thanks to the innovators, entrepreneurs, executives, investors, and others who have helped support Xconomy.
Bob Buderi, CEO, Xconomy
Paul Riser, Managing Director, Technology-Based Entrepreneurship, TechTown Detroit
Gerry Roston, CEO, Civionics; Executive-in-Residence, TechTown Detroit
Rich Sheridan, founder and CEO of Menlo Innovations in Ann Arbor, has never shied from challenges, opportunities or the limelight. While his focus has always been around technology, his passion is actually process, teamwork, and organizational design, with one inordinately popular goal: the business value of joy. Sheridan is an avid reader and historian, and his software design and development team at Menlo Innovations didn’t invent a new culture, but copied an old one—Edison’s lab in Menlo Park, NJ. (Henry Ford’s recreation of the Menlo Park Lab in Greenfield Village was a childhood inspiration.) Sheridan is the winner of six Inc. magazine revenue growth awards and travels the country speaking about Menlos’ one-of-a-kind software factory.
Registration and Networking: 2:30 – 3:00 pm
Unconference: 3:00 – 5:30 pm
Meet the Xconomists Reception: 5:30 – 7:00 pm