21 episodes

Entrepreneurship on the RISE, hosted by RISE Collaborative, tells the story of change-makers to advance the knowledge for rural ecosystem building. In each episode of this limited series, co-hosts Lauren Mathena and Jacob Dolence speak with industry leaders in Southern Virginia and across the country to hear how they are building up their local communities. Learn more at https://sovarise.com/

Entrepreneurship on the RISE RISE Collaborative

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 7 Ratings

Entrepreneurship on the RISE, hosted by RISE Collaborative, tells the story of change-makers to advance the knowledge for rural ecosystem building. In each episode of this limited series, co-hosts Lauren Mathena and Jacob Dolence speak with industry leaders in Southern Virginia and across the country to hear how they are building up their local communities. Learn more at https://sovarise.com/

    Brandon Hennessey on Leveraging Data to Support Entrepreneurs

    Brandon Hennessey on Leveraging Data to Support Entrepreneurs

    It is important to look at data for what it is and craft a narrative with the data and allow it to lead us toward innovation and growth. This week, season 2, episode 10 of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast, is about leveraging data to support entrepreneurs!


    RISE Collaborative is striving to create a more inclusive and vibrant regional economy in which makers, entrepreneurs, innovators, and service providers interact organically and collaboratively. Our mission is to enhance equity and access to entrepreneurship and innovation for people who have been underserved based on geographic location (anyone who lives, works, or owns a business in Southern Virginia), and for people who have been underrepresented based on race, gender, religion, or other factors. We are doing this by creating regionally-relevant incubator services and accelerator programs that can be accessed at many locations across our service area.


    In this episode of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast, Jacob and Lauren, joined by their guest Brandon Hennessey, share how we can take data and craft a story from the information it is giving us to grow as an ecosystem. We also discuss the intersection of the small business development center model with ecosystem building at a regional level in a rural landscape. 

    Some of the talking points we go over in this episode include:
    The ways in which Longwood’s Small Business Development Center operates differently than other SBDCs.How the idea for the Seed Innovation Hub has evolved over time to become what it is today. Brandon’s background as a technical artist and educator and how this weaves into his role as an ecosystem builder. The impact that the rise in AI will have on small business owners. How we can use data points and KPIs to determine growth in our region. 
    Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this episode, take a screenshot of the episode to post in your stories and tag us!  And don’t forget to follow, rate and review the podcast and tell me your key takeaways!


    Learn more about RISE Collaborative at https://sovarise.com/ 


    CONNECT WITH BRANDON HENNESSEY:
    LinkedIn


    LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE: 
    Longwood Small Business Development Center
    The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
    The Lean Startup by Eric Ries
    Mark Cuban 

    • 36 min
    Bethann West James and Hope Harris-Gayles on Creating Inclusive Entrepreneurial Support Networks

    Bethann West James and Hope Harris-Gayles on Creating Inclusive Entrepreneurial Support Networks

    By working together and bringing entrepreneurs and ecosystem builders together with an interest in supporting Black and Brown-owned businesses and entrepreneurs, we can build stronger regional economies. This week, episode 9 of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast is about creating inclusive entrepreneurial support networks! 


    RISE Collaborative is striving to create a more inclusive and vibrant regional economy in which makers, entrepreneurs, innovators, and service providers interact organically and collaboratively. Our mission is to enhance equity and access to entrepreneurship and innovation for people who have been underserved based on geographic location (anyone who lives, works, or owns a business in Southern Virginia), and for people who have been underrepresented based on race, gender, religion, or other factors. We are doing this by creating regionally-relevant incubator services and accelerator programs that can be accessed at many locations across our service area.


    In this episode of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast, Jacob and Lauren, joined by their guests Bethann West James and Hope Harris-Gayles are sharing the importance of building a better ecosystem through diversity and how the Grapevine Network pours into their efforts of supporting these marginalized entrepreneurs. 

    Some of the talking points we go over in this episode include:
    How RISE Collaborative has evolved and grown over time. What is Grapevine in relation to RISE Collaborative and what it stands to accomplish. What the summit confirmed as to the kind of support entrepreneurs are looking for. Hope and Bethann’s vision for growth for the Grapevine Network.Actionable tips to hold a productive meeting.
    Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this episode, take a screenshot of the episode to post in your stories and tag us!  And don’t forget to follow, rate and review the podcast and tell me your key takeaways!


    Learn more about RISE Collaborative at https://sovarise.com/ 


    CONNECT WITH BETHANN:
    LinkedIn 
    Gemstone Consulting


    CONNECT WITH HOPE:
    LinkedIn



    LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE: 
    Dan River Region Black Chamber of Commerce 
    Southern Virginia Higher Education Center
    The Grapevine Entrepreneur Network
    Longwood Small Business Development Center
    Start With Why by Simon Sinek
    RISE

    • 41 min
    Todd Waldo on Human Centered Solutions and Technology to Help Entrepreneurs Scale

    Todd Waldo on Human Centered Solutions and Technology to Help Entrepreneurs Scale

    Throughout the pandemic and subsequent years, we saw a shift in how businesses approached diversity and equity. However, it is clear that if we want to continue improving our ecosystems, we still have a long way to go before we can close that divide. This week, episode 8 of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast is about human-centered solutions and technology to help entrepreneurs scale. 


    RISE Collaborative is striving to create a more inclusive and vibrant regional economy in which makers, entrepreneurs, innovators, and service providers interact organically and collaboratively. Our mission is to enhance equity and access to entrepreneurship and innovation for people who have been underserved based on geographic location (anyone who lives, works, or owns a business in Southern Virginia), and for people who have been underrepresented based on race, gender, religion, or other factors. We are doing this by creating regionally-relevant incubator services and accelerator programs that can be accessed at many locations across our service area.


    In this episode of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast, Jacob and Lauren, joined by their guest Todd Waldo are sharing why entrepreneurship may not be the answer to all of our problems and the responsibility existing businesses have to use their platform to move past performative practices and prioritize meaningful actions towards equity and inclusivity. Some of the talking points we go over in this episode include:
    How Todd’s engineering background impacted his ability to improve operations and efficiency within the organizations he works with in his current role. The four main areas Hugh Helen focuses on when working with their clients.The cultural shifts and attention to diversity, equity, and inclusion that have come out of the pandemic and where we go from here. Using technology to intentionally close the diversity gap while being cautious not to create new barriers along the way. Finding a balance of tools and effective strategy in your business.

    Learn more about RISE Collaborative at https://sovarise.com/ 


    CONNECT WITH TODD WALDO:
    Hugh Helen
    Website
    LinkedIn
    Instagram


    LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE: 
    Tell Me How Long the Train’s Been Gone by James Baldwin
    The Jackson Ward Collective Foundation
    NC State University: Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
    Robert Russa Morton Museum
    [Article] The Closing of Prince Edward County’s Schools
    Discover Durham: Black Stories of Durham’s Past & Present 
    Smithsonian: Remembering Tulsa
    Venture Richmond: Jackson Ward

    • 40 min
    Anand Macherla on How to Build a Resilient Startup Ecosystem

    Anand Macherla on How to Build a Resilient Startup Ecosystem

    To create an ecosystem that is thriving, it’s important that ecosystem builders work together with the local community. Everyone impacted should have a voice and be made aware of the shifts happening in their rural community. This week, episode 7 of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast is about how to build a resilient startup ecosystem! 


    RISE Collaborative is striving to create a more inclusive and vibrant regional economy in which makers, entrepreneurs, innovators, and service providers interact organically and collaboratively. Our mission is to enhance equity and access to entrepreneurship and innovation for people who have been underserved based on geographic location (anyone who lives, works, or owns a business in Southern Virginia), and for people who have been underrepresented based on race, gender, religion, or other factors. We are doing this by creating regionally-relevant incubator services and accelerator programs that can be accessed at many locations across our service area.


    In this episode of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast, Jacob and Lauren, joined by their guest Anand Macherla are sharing the importance of finding other value sources in these ecosystems. They also discuss the underpinning value of ecosystem building. 


    Some of the talking points we go over in this episode include:
    How growing up in New Mexico shaped his perspective on startups and ecosystems. Skillsets we should be passing on to younger generations to drive change. Setting the model for equitable ecosystems. The intersection of state policy, environmental protection, and opportunities for entrepreneurs. 
    Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this episode, take a screenshot of the episode to post in your stories and tag us!  And don’t forget to follow, rate and review the podcast and tell me your key takeaways!


    Learn more about RISE Collaborative at https://sovarise.com/ 


    CONNECT WITH ANAND MACHERLA:
    LinkedIn


    LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE: 
    Michael Scales on a Lifetime of Ecosystem Building
    Emergent Strategy by Adrienne Maree Brown
    The Art of Gathering by Priya Parker

    • 40 min
    Beth Zimmer on Reducing the Barriers to Entry for Rural Startups

    Beth Zimmer on Reducing the Barriers to Entry for Rural Startups

    Serendipity in ecosystem building is a huge underlying and immeasurable resource. It’s important to have communities that support amazing things coming together in a harmonious way. This episode of the Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast is about reducing the barriers to entry for rural startups.


    RISE Collaborative is striving to create a more inclusive and vibrant regional economy in which makers, entrepreneurs, innovators, and service providers interact organically and collaboratively. Our mission is to enhance equity and access to entrepreneurship and innovation for people who have been underserved based on geographic location (anyone who lives, works, or owns a business in Southern Virginia), and for people who have been underrepresented based on race, gender, religion, or other factors. We are doing this by creating regionally-relevant incubator services and accelerator programs that can be accessed at many locations across our service area.


    In this episode of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast, Jacob and Lauren, joined by their guest Beth Zimmer are sharing Beth’s experience in working to solve the problem of an underdeveloped ecosystem lacking in startups and the beauty that comes when we all work together towards a common goal. 

    Some of the talking points we go over in this episode include:
    The role of serendipity in ecosystem building. What is an ecosystem builder, in Beth’s own words. How Right to Start helps reduce the barrier to entry so that entrepreneurs can start and feel supported along the way. Creating a platform with high engagement by setting the intentions of it being a space that belongs to all of it’s creators AND users. The immense value of social capital in ecosystem building.Advice and guidance for early ecosystem builders.
    Ecosystem building is a no brainer but we have to remember that we can go farther together than we can alone.


    Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this episode, take a screenshot of the episode to post in your stories and tag us!  And don’t forget to follow, rate and review the podcast and tell me your key takeaways!


    Learn more about RISE Collaborative at https://sovarise.com/ 


    CONNECT WITH BETH ZIMMER:
    eblp.zimmer@gmail.com
    EBLP Trade Wing


    LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE: 
    Startup Communities by Brad Feld
    Start With Why by Simon Sinek

    • 48 min
    Eric Weissmann on The Value of Variety in Ecosystem Building

    Eric Weissmann on The Value of Variety in Ecosystem Building

    When you look at ecosystems in nature, like the rainforest, for example, it’s not all tall trees but a variety of different species that come together to create a bigger landscape. The same goes for our regional ecosystems. It takes every one of every size to come together and win as a whole. This week, season 2, episode 5 of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast, is about the value of variety in ecosystem building.


    RISE Collaborative strives to create a more inclusive and vibrant regional economy in which makers, entrepreneurs, innovators, and service providers interact organically and collaboratively. Our mission is to enhance equity and access to entrepreneurship and innovation for people who have been underserved based on geographic location (anyone who lives, works, or owns a business in Southern Virginia), and for people who have been underrepresented based on race, gender, religion, or other factors. We are doing this by creating regionally-relevant incubator services and accelerator programs that can be accessed at many locations across our service area.


    In this episode of Entrepreneurship on the RISE Podcast, Jacob and Lauren, joined by their guest Eric Weissmann, Executive Director of NEXT, are sharing the importance of having variety and diversity in all areas of an ecosystem and how we can adopt this community mindset to put our efforts together and make our ecosystem successful for the benefit of all participants. 


    Some of the talking points discussed in this episode include:
    Using a campaign mentality to break your goals down into milestones, so you’re focusing your energy in the right places and avoiding getting stuck in activity vs. productivity.  How ecosystem building is like chili- everyone uses different recipes and ingredients, but we still get to the same outcome at the end of the day.How Eric’s work as a bridge spanner is focused on educating people that when they work together, everyone wins. Highlighting the smaller companies that, as a whole, contribute quite significantly to the GDP of the country and have an impact on ecosystem development. The importance of diversity (in all areas) as we enter into this new age of lifestyle expectations. The game of business attraction to a region shifting to talent attraction. 

    Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this episode, take a screenshot of the episode to post in your stories and tag us!  And don’t forget to follow, rate, and review the podcast and tell me your key takeaways!


    Learn more about RISE Collaborative at https://sovarise.com/ 


    CONNECT WITH ERIC WEISSMANN:
    Next SC


    LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE: 
    Team of Teams  by General Stanley McChrystal

    • 50 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
7 Ratings

7 Ratings

Va girls in Cali ,

Always useful information

You guys are always sharing such helpful, useful information! Love learning from you! Thank you for sharing!

jhokies ,

Gets you moving on your plan

Helps get your brain moving during the car ride to work. Great to hear different perspectives on economic development and entrepreneurship. So much entrepreneurship content feels like the “how to” content is the product itself, not the entrepenuaers skills, advice and experience. Not the case here, real stories and advice from those who are actually doing the work.

Hoss777 ,

Great insights on entrepreneurship in small towns

Interesting guests with great advice and actionable ideas for supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses

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