The recent debate about the JOBS Bill has put the spotlight once again on innovation and high-growth start up companies and what cities, resource providers and the federal government can do to encourage their growth. There’s a growing body of evidence that supports the attention being showered on these companies. Several recent studies, including one from the Kauffman Foundation, for example, confirm that high-growth startups are the biggest job creators, especially in their first few years of existence. Given the unemployment rate, that’s reason enough to focus on doing what it takes to ensure their success.
Even so, we must remember that it takes all kinds of organizations to create a sustainable business ecosystem that fuels the economy for the long-term. Startup America Partnership founder Scott Case said as much when he was in Kansas City a couple of months ago. He noted that we’re playing in “primordial soup.” We don’t know which companies, or even which industries, are going to emerge from the sea and walk on land, which are going to remain amphibians, and which will become extinct.
Economic sustainability is dependent on a balanced ecosystem consisting of fast-growth startups, traditional bricks and mortar small businesses, large corporations, business resource organizations, government entities and a number of other players all working in tandem. Cooperation, connectivity and access to and among all these parties and what each brings to the table is key.