Envision Member: Darren Oemcke

Darren is leader in business model modernisation, digital impacts on value chains, immersive learning environments and product development. He has developed and utilises tools for customer facing business models. He is a co-founder of consultant network Icons Alliance, knowledge management software developer Bowerbase and tourism business Invina. He is a partner in advisory firm HydraCo, specialising in competitive business models and operational improvement with a focus on value chains.

Business Website: www.darrenoemcke.com

Tell us how you first got involved in with New Venture Institute…
Someone told me I should get in touch with this new guy in town Matt Salier as the thing he was setting up at Flinders would interest me. So I did, and they did!Darren-Oemcke

I have been a mentor in VentureDorm/Mega, Junior Venture Dorm, Enterprise Workshop 2.0 and Startup weekend. I am the lead consultant and a mentor in the Flinders Business School/NVI Flinders Enterprise Consulting program for live consulting projects with undergraduate and post-graduate business students.

Why did you decide to join a co-working/incubator space?
To be around like-minded people.

What do you do for work? 
I do several things. One is to help companies modernise operations and business models, with a focus on utilising digital tools to effectively own their place in their supply/value stack. I also help businesses untangle operational messes and improve their offerings with a customer focus. Finally, I have a couple of companies of my own that are all based on digital first strategies.

Why is entrepreneurship important?
We live in a world of rapidly changing opportunities, surrounded by business and educational models that were developed for the 20th century. The conceptual model of training for a specific job is fundamentally broken whether you are a business owner or employee. We all need to be learners and doers within our specialisations. World changing ideas can now be implemented for thousands of dollars and scale to impact in a few years. Australia must be part of that world.

What do you do for fun when you’re not at a co-working space?
Surf, pine for surf, check for surf, check social media, read, sleep. Interact with cherished humans.

What is the best piece of career advice you have received?
Never grow up. I have not been as successful as I would like.

Who or what inspires you and why?
Young people. They are connected, keen and capable. They are in a position to try anything.

What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about embarking on a start-up?
Start. Co-found.

What are three websites you check every day?
Wrong question. The question should be what are all the ways you interact with the digital world almost every day. For me they are: Google, Safari/Chrome/Duck-Duck-Go, Facebook app, Twitter app, Mail/Outlook, calendar, podcasts, mobile phone, camera, television, LinkedIn app, contacts, MS Word, Dropbox, 1Password, WiFi, Bluetooth, Music App, timesheet app, Google maps, Notes App, Messenger App, Pages App, Omnigraffle.

It is amazing to think about your digital world. I guess because I was born analog I notice it more. It is useful to think what have I used this year that I didn’t use last year and which of these have I used for 10 years or more. Stretch the list to what you use every week and it is extraordinary.

Why should someone consider entrepreneurship over the perception of “stable employment”?
Stable employment is a 1950’s urban myth. Everyone needs to be ‘entrepreneurial’ whether creating businesses or working to improve existing businesses.

We need to build the businesses of the future, first.