Community’s Role in Innovation


Last night I had the privilege of attending a “soft” opening of a new taproom, Figleaf Brewing in the Monroe/Middletown area of Ohio.  After several of us tried the beers and were making comments on each, we were offered the opportunity to tour the facility.  The owners were very open about their process, offered to answer questions, and allowed us to get up close and personal to what seemed to be some very expensive equipment.

After the tour we were discussing what it took to start a new business, etc, and one of my friends, Kat, said she really wanted to work in the beer industry.  She has brought up a few ideas of how she might start something in the brewing industry, something new.  And I very much want her to pursue her desire to be in the industry because not only do we need more women in the brewing industry, but she has great passion for it and who doesn’t want to see a friend succeed?

Why am I telling this story?  It’s all about new ideas.  A new taproom.  A friend coming up with her own spin on how to get involved in an industry.  Did these ideas just pop into their heads and become reality?  No, they involve planning, strategy, and of course money.  So what role does community play in new ideas?  Below is a great Ted Talk by Steven Johnson discussing his perspective on how the interaction of people brings about innovation.  I hope those with some ideas cooking (this means you, Kat!) find the talk inspiring.  And I happily offer myself up to be a community member for anyone who needs to bounce scenarios around or feels I have a strength to contribute.  Think big, share your ideas with those around you, and create something great.

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