Building a cross-border entrepreneurial community in Latin America with Alex Santana, VC and Startups Manager at Amazon Web Services, Ep. 35


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Bringing Latin American entrepreneurs together

According to Alex Santana, a community is a cohesive group of people willing to work no matter what towards an ultimate goal that goes beyond their own interests. And Alex has been building one of the most relevant tech startup communities in Latin America for a decade.

In today’s How to be the Difference episode, Johanna and Paul sit down with Alex Santana, the VC of Capital & Startups at Amazon Web Services. Alex is also a community leader and international facilitator at Startup Weekend, an organization that aims to educate entrepreneurs in 54 hours. He also serves as a Global Shaper for the World Economic Forum.

In this episode, Alex shares his view on why it is important to look at Latin America’s startup ecosystem as a whole, where entrepreneurs support each other and join efforts toward creating groundbreaking and efficient products and services. He explains how the Startup Weekend event helps entrepreneurs build in 54 hours replicable and scalable products with a couple of clients and a proof of concept. Alex also gives his insights on what are the most relevant skills and tools professionals and HR managers need to have to be prepared for the future of work.

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Outline of this episode:

  • [02:30] – Introduction to Alex Santana
  • [03:10] – Alex’s background
  • [04:25] – His position in LatAm’s startup ecosystem 
  • [07:33] – How do you build a strong community?
  • [10:15] – Building an online community after the Covid-19 pandemic
  • [12:13] – Why is entrepreneurship important for AWS?
  • [14:40] – What is Startup Weekend?
  • [17:25] – Success stories from Startup Weekend
  • [19:30] – Skills necessary to succeed in the future of work
  • [21:18] – Necessary tools for the future of work
  • [24:12] – What will become relevant in the next few years?
  • [26:25] – Advice for HR leaders
  • [29:35] – What’s next for Alex?

Resources and people mentioned:

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