Digital CMO Summit: What makes an Entrepreneur?

Although it was a few weeks ago, my mind is still buzzing with learnings from the 2011 Digital CMO Summit, which I had the opportunity to attend in New Orleans with John Bell. This unique event was not only filled with hands on learning and compelling content, but brought together some of the most innovative brands for a two day summit. More to come on that in my next post.  While I was at the summit, I had the opportunity to meet some truly inspiring and interesting people – who not only breathe social – but know how to apply it to a entrepreneurial spirit to fuel really smart ideas among the vibrant New Orleans community. Meet Chris Schultz, President of Voodoo Ventures. We briefly sat down with Chris who shared his passion for creativity and the importance of entrepreneurship in New Orleans, especially Post-Katrina.

Chris is a co-founder of Launch Pad, a collaborative workspace in downtown New Orleans that is home to more than 60 startups in the Big Easy.  He created Launch Pad Ignition, the first seed accelerator on the gulf coast, and part of the Techstars Network and the Startup America initiative.  The list goes on: He also co-founded TribeCon, a conference about leveraging online communities to create offline change and mentors young entrepreneurs in the community in addition to building his own companies. You can see part of his interview with us in the video below:

After speaking to Chris, I started contemplating what attributes really make a successful entrepreneur. Are certain people born with a special “gene?” It is drive? Exceptional creativity? Or the ability to take risks? As social media marketing professionals, aren’t we required to exhibit some or all of the same qualities in order to be successful at our jobs? I think it is clear that both entrepreneurs and successful marketing professionals have to have vision, inspiration, and drive, but even more important are smart instincts. I think Steve Jobs said it best when he said, “…Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”