Foundry Group Network and Community
by Ryan McIntyre
Building a strong network and community has been core to the ethos of Foundry Group since its inception in 2007. Our partner Brad literally wrote the book on Startup Communities in 2012 and has a sequel, The Startup Community Way, coming out next month.
Our portfolio community (now 75+ active companies and 32 Partner Funds) has grown organically over the past decade with engagement largely driven by the partners at Foundry.
Over the past few years, we have been investing more time and resources into building and growing our Foundry family and community. We’ve made incremental improvements here and there, tried some things that have worked well, things that have failed, and others in between. We’ve landed on the pillars below that we are focused on going forward:
- In-person Events
- Virtual Community
- Data & Resources
- Access to the greater Foundry Ecosystem
We are now supercharging these initiatives into what we’re branding The Foundry Network. The Foundry Network brings together founders, CEOs, executives, GPs, and LPs, and other members of our ecosystem like Pledge1% and the B Corp community to connect, share, and learn from each other. We know that together we can help create more successful businesses.
While the pillars above are really the “what” of the Foundry Network, there is an intangible value and ethos to the Foundry Network that is hard to put into words, but I’ll try. It’s not just what we do but a feeling of community that goes far beyond the capital invested.
We are a mesh network where leaders in our portfolio can reach out to each other en masse or individually as well as get together in-person for official or small ad-hoc events and meetups.
We look to and listen to our community to gauge where we are focusing our time and take the approach of “community led growth” to heart.
We seek to open source resources to our community and the general public whenever possible.
We are amplifiers that seek to extend the reach and collaborate on initiatives with our network to have a larger impact than we could have alone.
We commit ourselves to continual improvement and strive to always be thinking of where we can have impact with our voice and resources and that of our network.
As part of this, I’ve transitioned to lead our network full time as the Network and Community Catalyst.
While I’ve met many peers running “Platform/Network/Community/Engagement” at other VC firms over the years, I always love hearing new ideas and connecting (or reconnecting) to other community builders and organizations. Feel free to reach out at @micahmador on twitter or email me at micah(at)foundrygroup.com.