Entrepreneurship and Value Creation

Episode 1! I’m still a little incredulous that I have a book, let alone a podcast, but okay. Here we are, my co-host Joan Quintana and I, introducing the world to my V-REEL™ Framework. V-REEL™ stands for Value, Rareness, Eroding factors, Enabling factors and Longevity. Those are very easy words to remember that are intended to simplify what can be a rather complicated topic at times – strategy. Those words are a guiding framework for organizing your thoughts about how you are going to create value in the marketplace, develop distinctive competencies, and potentially have a competitive advantage in whatever you’re trying to do. Today we are talking to Jose Quintana about the importance of sound strategy for innovators and entrepreneurs.

Jose is one of those entrepreneurs that just has to keep innovating. Lucky for him, he’s enjoyed some success and, in the last seven years or so he’s enjoyed great success helping other entrepreneurs get started through his business incubator. The Innovation Underground is Jose’s privately owned, independently operated business and technology incubator located in Bryan, TX. Importantly, Bryan is a twin city to College Station, home to Texas A&M University. While not all of the businesses Jose supports are associated with Texas A&M – not even most of them, actually – the presence of a major research university and Jose’s strong relationships within the Texas A&M community are pretty significant enabling factors for the Innovation Underground’s success.

In this conversation with Jose, I wanted to try to understand why Jose is interested in the V-REEL™ Framework. After all, the IU has been growing at a pretty good clip from the start and we’ve only been talking V-REEL™ for a couple of years.

“When we started talking about V-REEL™ and you were sharing the framework with some of our members, I thought this could save us a ton of time.” he told me.

I developed the framework to help people refine their strategic reasoning, make it more rational, reasonable and defensible. It is good to hear people like Jose who work with lots of entrepreneurial types see potential value in the framework.

“We sometimes use the business model canvas and our own matrix-based process for planning but by the time you’re using those tools you need to have a clear picture in your mind of how you’re going to differentiate yourself from the competition. And that’s where we struggle and that’s why I see the value of having the V-REEL™ exercise as early as possible.” he said.

Jose is supporting more than 54 start-ups right now, and more than a handful of those are international companies that have chosen to work with him in the quaint setting of Historic Downtown Bryan, TX. He’s been at this for more than seven years at that location and is being asked to replicate the Innovation Underground model in cities around the world. He’s looking at tools to help scale and challenging me to put together “an army of V-REEL™ coaches and consultants.”

We will see. I suppose I should V-REEL™ that concept. In the meantime, have a listen to Episode 1 of Thinking Beyond: Conversations with Strategic Thinkers and be sure to subscribe. We are available on iTunes, SoundCloud, and GooglePlay.

Thinking Beyond: Conversations with Strategic Thinkers

Ep. 1: Jose Quintana: Entrepreneurship and Value Creation