"Innovation and Leadership"

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Last night, I attended the Ten Awards in New York City, which were organized by the Executive Council of New York to recognize the achievements of local business executives. Carly Fiorina provided the keynote remarks, and her theme was that management is all about preservation, while leadership and innovation are about making change happen within an organization and within a market. It's clear she consders herself to be a leader and an innovator, not a manager. Many of the award winners and nominees could also be described that way. Several would be familiar to Inc. readers, including:

One-time Inc. cover subject Shoba Purushothaman missed out on up-and-comer of the year, losing to Jared Kushner, the fresh-faced scion of a troubled New Jersey real estate developer. Kushner recently bought the New York Observer, a small but influential newspaper.

Former Inc. 500 CEO David Rose of AngelSoft won an award for his new venture, a web-based resource for angel groups and angel investors.

Finally, Jason Finger of Seamless Web was on hand to wn the innovator of the year award. His company, which helps large banks and law firms cater meals for individual employees while eliminating T&E hassles, was acquired by Aramark earlier this year. He told me that life at the company post-deal has been pretty good.

I hadn't been to the Ten Awards before (I think this was their fourth or fifth year), but one thing I liked about the program is that it paired entrepreneurs like Shoba, David, and Jason, alongside corporate types from Loews, Bear Stearns, and American Express. It's not uncommon for event organizers to view the business community as a corporate monolith, so it's refreshing when a group gives equal balance to businesses of all sizes.

Last updated: Nov 7, 2006




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