Entrepreneurial Ecosystems - Where Entrepreneurs Can Thrive

Josh Footer
April 27, 2021

I am Josh Footer, and I’m the managing partner at TWIO, a Salt Lake-based brand marketing firm. I grew up in Maryland, went to college in Ithaca, NY, and moved to Utah for grad school in 1996. I have lived in Park City since 2001. My whole professional career has been at TWIO. The agency business has both changed radically and stayed the same in my 23 years. 

To this day, the most important things we can do for our clients is to listen, think, stay focused on delivering to their business objectives, and be responsive, always. For the TWIO team, our people, we try and create a sense of community, a place where they can learn, grow and fail (with a net) as long as there is intent and effort. I truly love being an employer as It makes me feel valuable to my community. And for our team, they have the opportunity to learn, thrive, and provide. That’s why I do what I do.

From my firsthand experience, having the tools and resources that an organization like Pando provides is incredibly beneficial for several compelling reasons:

1. An opportunity for personal and professional growth.
Connecting with like-focused (not necessarily like-minded) people is critical for both professional and personal growth. Entrepreneurs want to grow something and there are lots of ways to do that. What has worked for me may not be what worked for them. I want to both contribute what I’ve learned as well as take in what has been successful for others. Not to copy, but to add ideas to the mix.
2. A diverse array of experts and knowledge at your disposal.
Ideas. Knowledge-Sharing. Success fosters more success. I want to be a part of that. I also want to help others on their journey, particularly if they are tackling a specific challenge I have encountered before. Both knowledge and experts are great, but bringing the two together in a COMMUNITY with a shared vision is essential. Without the community, it is just a bunch of individuals doing their thing, without optimizing their potential through collaboration.
3. Pando fills a niche that otherwise wouldn’t exist in the greater Park City and Salt Lake area.
With many incubators or entrepreneurial orgs, there’s a risk that people come and they take more than they give back. What’s different about Pando is the expectation that every member gives 2x more than they take … that’s different, refreshing, and not self-serving. There’s nothing in Utah that provides a comparable community or culture of knowledge sharing and symbiotic growth.

Being a part of the Pando ecosystem means that I can contribute to a different type of entrepreneurial community, and that is what’s really appealing. Plus, getting outside with other folks who love recreating in the mountains is an opportunity to develop ideas and exchange knowledge. And that is precisely the benefit, because these organic conversations nuance the way I approach running TWIO.