The week started a day earlier on Sunday 10th January with the participants flying, driving, maneuvering their way around the country by any means necessary to get to Boulcott Hall in Wellington, their home for the next 6 weeks. Filled with excitement and anticipation, individuals were put through their paces on DISC profiling, shown around Wellington on a private tour hosted by none other than Nick Churchouse, & brought back to their halls for some much needed rest for the week to come.
Monday shaped up to be a major wake up call with the crew getting to know their workspace at the Victoria University school of Design & Architecture, laying down rules of engagement on how we would roll throughout the rest of the programme, & individual pitching pushed on all participants to establish viable businesses by the end of day 1! Needless to say, there was excitement buzzing throughout the room with newly formed friendships and the start of a journey among the teams.
The following day was an early morning filled with figuring out what terms were used in the start up world. You would be amazed with what you can abbreviate in such a short amount of time! The room then shifted into a Skype session introducing Claudia Batten – an International high flying, business minded, female entrepreneur to the young inquisitive group.
Having guys like Dave Moskovitz mixed into the fold always keeps things interesting with the breadth of knowledge & experience he has to impart. The lean business canvas was applied to all teams under the watchful guidance by the best with most teams picking up the concepts instantly! The day quickly turned into night as the group had a fast turn around to practice their pitch & present them to mentors at Creative HQ – a daunting task for anyone who has started businesses in 3 days!
CEO of Pledgeme, Anna Guenther made a drop in appearance sharing her stories on how to best crowdfund for both Venture Up & potentially their own campaigns for their individual businesses. So much wisdom in such a short amount of time forced every individual in the room to think differently, be creative, & use all existing connections to make for a successful way to reach any goals.
Social entrepreneurship has been an emerging trend with more & more start ups looking to make a positive impact in the world through business. What better way to weave a thread of this into the ventures than introducing David Clearwater & Chris O’Neill of Akina Foundation to push & challenge students to think bigger than themselves.
There has been a fast & furious pace set to start the week for NZ’s leading youth accelerator programme & can only go up from here. Look forward to an introduction to the teams in next weeks post!!!