As a growing sensation not only in Canada’s tech scene but the rest of the world, it was only a matter of time before F*ckup Nights made their way to the major hotbed that is Kitchener/Waterloo (KW).
F*ckup Nights is a monthly speaker series that brings out a wide array of folks to all talk about the different ways they have failed. This kind of deep introspection aims to guide others towards learning from mistakes and not being afraid to take risks. Already live in cities like Vancouver, Montreal, and Toronto (who celebrated their one-year anniversary this past March), F*ckup Nights is now expanding to the tech hub of KW to better help the entrepreneurs, innovators, founders and everyone else in the region become a little more ambitious—and, of course, laugh at a few silly stories of glorious screw-ups.
“Kitchener-Waterloo is one of the largest and most successful tech clusters—yet, for every success story there’s at least one failure,” explains Marsha Druker, founder of F*ckup Nights Toronto the person behind the expansion to KW. “Failing fast is a term that’s overused in the tech world. We should be aiming to ‘fail mindfully’, taking the time for deep learning. Bringing F*ckup Nights to KW is an important next step for this tech community’s evolution and growth.”
The first event in KW takes place this month on November 22 at Shopify’s office in the region, which is a reason enough to go, considering the office is gorgeous (see the header image as well). This inaugural edition features the CTO of Encircle and the founder of Mastermind Talks as speakers, sharing stories of ways they have messed up and learned from the mistakes.
Though F*ckup Nights in Toronto had a distinct focus on the tech world, it has expanded a bit to include speakers from all kinds of backgrounds. But Druker expects the KW series will go back to that tech-centric suite of speakers with an audience full of students and entrepreneurs. There’s also a storied history of technology startups—and with that, their declines—in the KW region, and F*ckup Nights could help unlock some of the lasting lessons from the historic companies in the region.
The Toronto edition of the speaker series has been very successful and that’s what helped drive the expansion.
“As soon as F*ckup Nights launched in Toronto in March of 2017, it resonated and caught a wave of growth, quickly becoming one of the most successful chapters globally,” says Druker. “The overwhelmingly positive reception in Toronto pushed me to explore the next phase of growth. Expanding to cover the Toronto-Waterloo Tech Corridor was the natural next step and an exciting challenge.”