Even though many corporates feel the pain to evolve, most of them are still exceeding current business models. On the other hand, we see startups like Whatsapp, which are still on the search for profitable business model or product.
Steve Blank and Eric Ries exactly address this issue of startups. They define a startup as “a temporary organization whose only task is the search for a scalable and repeatable business model”. To guide this process, they developed a methodology called the ‘Customer Development’. Core to this methodology is testing assumptions directly with your prospective customers, in order to learn as quickly as possible which problems their customers have and how to solve it. The goal is to reach product-market fit as quickly as possible, before the money runs out. Product-Market fit is defined in two ways: The point in time at which your product almost perfectly fits market demand and when the focus of the company shifts from the search for a business model, to optimizing and scaling the business model. This is the moment a startup is going to operate more like a traditional corporate.
Startupbootcamp has a lot of mentors coming from corporates or former entrepreneurial background. As building a startup today requires a different mindset than working in a traditional corporation or building a firm 15 years ago, we sometimes find some cultural clashes. Nevertheless, our mentors experience is one of our core assets, which the startups need to leverage in the most effective way while they are in the program. Hence, Startupbootcamp is organizing mentor masterclasses to bring together the best out of two worlds.
SBC Amsterdam will hold two – invitation only – mentorclasses in the first quarter of 2013. During these classes, mentors will get an introduction to the Lean Startup methodology & experiment design by Startupbootcamp mentor Kees van Nunen. Also, Vodafone representative Marcus Breekweg and Startupbootcamp alumni will discuss how they use the methodology within their organizations on a daily basis. Mentors will also receive hands-on experience with designing an experiment for one of the Startupbootcamp alumni to test a hypothesis within their business model. With the future in mind, Marcus Breekweg will present a case study about Philips, showing how they evolved into new business fields and how to use the presented tools also in the corporate business environment. The essence of the mentor classes is the alignment between mentors and startups. All to provide the most valuable and acquainted advice to Startupbootcamp Class’ 13 and beyond.