Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2011 about Entrepreneurship in Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

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Friday 11th March 2011

  • Being Young and Rocking It

    by Brian Wong

    Being a young entrepreneur in this period of time in business and commerce is an exciting thing. It is your biggest asset. You should rock it.

    But how do you rock it? How do you overcome traditional preconceived notions of being "younger", more "inexperienced", and "naive"? Simple. You turn them into your strengths. Everyone always talks about how being curious, how retaining youthful characteristics is a great way to succeed without bounds. Why can't those who truly embody those characteristics be the ones that indeed reap those rewards?

    Most younger entrepreneurs are at the edge of a cliff. They are looking for reasons to jump, or not to jump. There are lots of people willing to tell them all the reasons of why they shouldn't. Very few are there to tell them all the reasons why they should, and to help them throughout to show them how to grow wings in the process. I'm there to nudge them.

    Being a 19-year-old entrepreneur with a funded start up - experience at a well-known company in the social news landscape, and literally being thrown into a pit of extremely successful entrepreneurs as a non-American (a Canadian), helped prime me to learn all of the lessons that I will be sharing with everyone.

    Anyone fascinated by the elusive "young" entrepreneur - and especially the type that genuinely takes tangible action towards successful milestones in their career - and wondering about how to learn from them and to help nurture their growth - should come.

    LEVEL: Intermediate

    At 2:00pm to 3:00pm, Friday 11th March

    In Brazos 2/3, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

  • The Life of the Startup Parent

    by Joshua Porter and Charlie Park

    You’re starting a startup, running a blog professionally, investing in other startups, or otherwise doing "the geek thing," and yet ... you know that your identity is rooted even more in the little one at home who’s toddling around in a playpen, learning teamwork on a soccer field, working on a science fair experiment, or otherwise doing "the kid thing."

    How do you balance your role as a parent with your role as a co-founder? How do you reconcile these two worlds, each of which would happily consume you completely? How much do you rely on your (life) partner? Your (business) partners? How do you reconcile the tension between these two worlds?

    A panel of rockstar parents/startup cofounders will share their secrets of success, their awkward failures, and their startup / parenting war stories.

    LEVEL: Beginner

    At 2:00pm to 3:00pm, Friday 11th March

    In Rio Grande B, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

Saturday 12th March 2011

  • Where Are The Women in Startups? Um, Everywhere!

    by Carla Thompson and Meghan Casserly

    There are thousands of women out there innovating and starting businesses across sectors; so why all the negativity in the media? Every week brings a slightly different take on the where-are-women-in-business article. Some look at venture funding, others look at women's representation in specific sectors, but they all have the same theme - women can't seem to get it together when it comes to business.

    This panel approaches the issue of women in startups from two key angles. First, the assertion that woman are non-existent simply isn't true anymore. The real stories need to come to the forefront. And second, you can only complain about a problem for so long before it's time to deliver a solution.

    Women in startups are simply tired of the bad rap media has stamped on them so, they're coming forward to talk about the real issues. Like, why are women inherently less inclined to sell themselves? There are multiple reasons behind this but the basic truth is that many of us need more urging to boast of our talents.

    Overall, there are all sorts of factors that play into women's roles in startups such as the fact that many women entrepreneurs are also primary caregivers of children, household managers, family financial planners, etc. Not to mention, the age-old-truth that we are trained as a society to think women have a harder time with their careers. Let's face it girls - it's time for a change.

    LEVEL: Beginner

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Saturday 12th March

    In Rio Grande A, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

Sunday 13th March 2011

  • Breaking Glass Ceiling - Fearless Women Entrepreneur

    by Amita Paul and Marylene Delbourg-Delphis

    You don't want to simply break glass ceilings and start in a negative fashion that has yielded mixed results in the business world as there are only 13 women CEO's in the USA's 500 most publicly traded companies.

    Despite gains, women business owners still have many barriers to overcome before obtaining truly equal opportunity in the marketplace. So, What are these barriers?

    These questions and many more like this, mark every step of the path these fearless women in business take, every day. This panel will share the stories of joy and pain and habits of these wonder women.

    So shoot for the sky and be innovative. This panel addresses inspired women who want to inspire other women.

    LEVEL: Intermediate

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Sunday 13th March

    In Rio Grande A, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

Monday 14th March 2011

  • Your Web Developer Thinks You're an Idiot

    by Babette Pepaj

    "What we have here is a failure to communicate." This famous line (spoken to Paul Newman in Cool Hand Luke) aptly describes the relationship that can develop between a Web site publisher and the site's developer. We'll examine real-world examples (some hilarious, others downright frightening) and discuss strategies to help non-techie entrepreneurs communicate effectively with their tech/development team.

    This panel will help your bootstrapped startup avoid being taken for a ride.

    LEVEL: Intermediate

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Monday 14th March

    In Rio Grande A, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

  • Switch: from Freelancer to Entrepreneur

    So you’ve tumbled down the rabbit hole into the world of freelancing and you’re ready to make it a legit career so your friends stop thinking you’re unemployed. But how does it actually happen? Should you take the red pill... or the blue one? Do you have to grow a big agency or outsource work to India? Maybe neither. Designing a successful business takes vision, organization and communication mixed with grit and determination. And our panel guests are in the thick of it—building a business together and ready to share their successes and failures with you.

    LEVEL: Intermediate

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Monday 14th March

    In Brazos 2/3, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center