A couple of weeks ago, we at Layeredi participated in a Startup Job Crawl that was put on by Silicon Prairie News – a regional publication that highlights and supports the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the mid-west. The purpose of the Startup Job Crawl was to provide a unique spin on the more traditional “job fair” concept by exposing college students and young professionals to our area’s creative and innovative young companies – not just your typical Fortune 500 companies.
For any technology company in the midwest – or the Silicon Prairie as we like to call it – finding and retaining top-level engineering and creative talent is a major challenge. It’s not due to a lack of talent in the region – companies like Dwolla, Groupon, Hudl and more have seen huge success and attracted great local talent – but more a lack of mind share with the young folks in the market for employment. Around here it’s uncommon for students to grow up with a parent who worked at a startup – or even know someone who’s associated with one – so they’ve never had that exposure. This dynamic is changing quickly here in the Silicon Prairie. The Job Crawl was all about creative and high-growth companies like Layeredi exposing young people to new opportunities with great startups.
For me, being at this event was absolutely inspiring. Layeredi is my second startup and, for me, all of the up’s, down’s and the constant hustle of building businesses makes it very easy to lose perspective on where you came from and why we do what we do as entrepreneurs. The curiosity, excitement, motivation, creativity and sense of community in the room was contagious.
Below is a short video Silicon Prairie News put together that highlighted the event and features some some interviews and commentary myself and Dusty Davidson