NextNY Biz Dev 2.0
Andrew and I went up to Columbia University last night to participate in a discussion of "Biz Dev 2.0" put on by NextNY.
For those of you who don’t know, NextNY is a networking group started by Charlie O’Donnell and some friends who felt the need for young professionals in the NY Internet business to network and learn more about their industry.
I really like the format they used. They got a good group of "discussion leaders" who in most events would be panelists. But instead they put everyone in the audience and we just talked to each other. Much better.
The discussion leaders included Tina Sharkey, Catherine Levine, Chris Fralic, Niki Scevak, Zia Daniel Wigdar, and yours truly (I think I may be forgetting someone and if so I am sorry).
The conclusion we came to is that you have to have business development people in a startup, even with simple integration technologies like RSS, open APIs, and embeddable widgets. But the job of a business development executive is changing. You have to be more product focused, more technical, and focus on making deals where there is already user level integration happening.
NextNY is a great organization. If you are young and in the Internet business in NYC and interested in networking, you have to join.
Their blog is here. Give it a read.