I attend a number of conferences and events through the year, but the one I look forward to most is South by Southwest Interactive (SXSWi). Sure, there are a lot of great events at SXSWi, engaging speakers, amazing food and great entertainment. But the reason I love it so much is because it’s basically like attending a party—for great ideas.
While digital innovation is constantly on display, it’s the people talking at SXSWi that give another layer to the event. They talk after hearing great ideas; they talk while waiting in line; they talk while getting a drink. And when people talk, ideas are born.
And that’s part of the inspiration behind our own event at SXSWi this year, where American Express OPEN is working with the startup Skillshare to get people to do a lot of talking, listening and thinking.
Skillshare, if you’re not familiar with this hot startup, is building more than an innovative company—they’re building a movement. Their mission is to transform education by empowering teaching and democratizing learning. The basic premise is that everyone has something to teach and that we are all life-long learners.
At American Express OPEN, we couldn’t agree more and are thrilled to help push this movement forward. We believe that business owners everywhere are creators and teachers of their craft like none other. And we believe that getting practical business lessons from experienced entrepreneurs can help more new business owners succeed. Providing time-starved business owners with the information and connections they need was the idea behind OPEN Forum from the beginning; now, with Skillshare, we can bring that assistance to a live class, possibly near you.
We have some big plans with Skillshare (I’ll share more in the coming months), but would love to hear your ideas as we launch this collaboration. Are there specific classes you’re interested in taking? Or classes you’d like to teach?
And, if you’re planning to be at SXSWi, stop by Rusty’s on Sunday, Mar. 11 from 5-10 p.m. for food and drink and to hear from inspirational teachers, including:
- Brad Burnham, Partner at Union Square Ventures
- Mike Lazerow, CEO & Co-Founder of Buddy Media
- Malcolm Ong, CTO of Skillshare
- Eric Ries, entrepreneur and author of the bestselling The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Business
- And more…
So join us to listen, talk, think and, hopefully, come away with some new ideas. If you can’t join us there, look for upcoming announcement about more events and classes. But until then, I encourage you to check out Skillshare and take a class, teach a class, and help more businesses succeed.