is booming in Massachusetts, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to build and scale
a robotics business. It’s a well-known fact amongst robotics CEOs that “you
have to be more right when building a hardware business.” Software companies
are easier to pivot. Making a mistake when building physical things can cost
you the business. That’s why it’s so important for robotics company executives to learn from
those who have gone before them.
recent MassTLC Executive Dinner focused on challenges and insights of growing
your robotics business. Burlington’s Tuscan Kitchen was the venue for CEOs and
other c-level executives from over a dozen robotics companies, representing a
diversity of stages and industres, including: Artaic, Ascend Robotics, Boston
Engineering, iRobot, Locus Robotics, MassRobotics, Myomo,
ORI Systems, Rethink Robotics, Riptide Solutions, SoftRobotics, and Symbotic.
Figure 1. (L-R) Tom Ryden (Exec Director,
MassRobotics), Chris Gahagan (CEO, Symbotic), Carl Vause (CEO, Soft Robotics)
conversation was a frank, off the record, opportunity for these executives to
share both ubiquitous and unique lessons learned from a diverse array of
robotics applications, ranging across healthcare, marine, consumer, supply
chain, defense, creative industries, and more. Variations on rapid talent
acquisition across the organization, the evolution of leadership at the
management and board levels, and issues unique to various types of boards and
at different stages of the business were major topics of conversation.