Britain is a country that has gained a wealth of knowledge, skills and experience from the diversity of cultural backgrounds and its international reputation. As the recent debate between Nick Clegg and Nigel Farage on immigration demonstrates, this heritage is often maligned and the incredible opportunities it affords us are wasted.
Cruising around in a yacht, the sun is shining, and I'm with Playboy bunnies. That's what I had in mind when I decided to be an entrepreneur. I was 15. It's easy to imagine successful entrepreneurs living the good life. Fast cars, private jets, yachts, St.Tropez, champagne, sunshine and rainbows, and for me girls in bikinis, lots of girls in bikinis.
Whether you are a businesses, a band or a creative entrepreneur, sometimes when you start off with a big hit it can be hard to reach the same highs the second time around. It's the classic so called 'second album syndrome'. It is always a challenge to follow up a great success in any sector, whether it's in entertainment, a high street store or business to business software.
While working as a consultant in London a few years ago, I remember it as a "suit city" like New York. However, over the past two years, a lot of investment has been committed to change this - as evidenced by the Sirius Programme. This shows that the British government is taking this movement sirius-ly and will support its growth over the coming years.
Every good business knows that you can never let a crisis go to waste. To turn this crisis into our opportunity we must, like Mr Meyer and his fire station, start from the basics. The first flagship and most daring policy of an entrepreneurial public sector would be making Britain the best place on earth to start a new business.
Nine months ago I left my perfectly reasonable job in online advertising to start my own business. Starting a blog nine months into a startup seems particularly appropriate because in that time, as I'm sure you're aware, a baby can be made. There are many many similarities between having a baby and forming your own start-up.
At 41, I had a baby. Followed 17 months later by another... and all the life-skewing, skin-flaying emotions they have brought with them... so, what next? I set up my own business and Big Fish Little Fish Productions - running family club events on weekend afternoons - was born. A micro-festival for the post-rave generation of parents and children.
What can we do here in Britain to foster innovation and entrepreneurship in order to give our companies the best chance to succeed on the world stage? This is a question that we as a country need to answer if we are to remain an economic powerhouse, and with a multitude of emerging economies breathing down our necks, it's a question we need to answer quickly.
I think it is true that the current economic climate poses challenges that are very different to those faced by the school and university leavers of previous generations. There might not be a queue of companies waiting to give graduates a job, but there are plenty of young people out there with the drive, enthusiasm and entrepreneurial spirit to help themselves.