Earlier this past summer, you probably noticed some outreach from the FRC and SEED$ (Southeast Economic Development Fund) attempting to identify prospective idea-folks – those pre-entrepreneurs or those individuals with entrepreneurial desires – who might be able to use an educational boost to help them launch their ventures.
We sent communications to many of our members, gathered some regional tech/entrepreneur opinion-leaders who – through the classic six degrees of separation – might be able to connect us to prospects for this course (future entrepreneurs don’t wear signs to let us know who they are!)…We even hosted an event that brought many program prospects together to get their take on the program we had in mind.
Through those conversations, we learned that our original plan to do a 48-hour marathon weekend intensive program (think “Google Startup” here) wasn’t going to be the right approach at this time.
So . . . in “lean speak”, the original idea was “tweaked,” but we did not “pivot” away from it. We chose to deliver the product in a way our customers would find more valuable.
At this point, you probably think I’m going to launch into the reasons individuals should participate in the revised program which will be offered in October. (Don’t worry … that will come a little later in this post!)
Instead, what stands out to me that’s worth sharing is that we weren’t afraid to talk to our prospective customers (attendees) first before we launched our product.
Had we forged ahead, we might have encountered roadblocks which could have been detrimental to our more global cause of cultivating entrepreneurs. We might not have had participants, but still had the cost of building and hosting the original program.
Though our “business plan” was pretty darned good in the beginning (and yes, we were confident in it), we were willing to engage others in the discussion to help fine-tune our initiative for future success.
Now, while this may seem like a little difference, it can mean the difference between success and failure for an entrepreneur. And it’s this type of thinking and subsequent modeling that the Lean Startup: Basics Course will share with future entrepreneurs and folks with ideas ready to be cultivated.[OK – Enter pitch for program here.]
Lean Startup: Basics is an introduction to a vastly improved process to create and launch successful new products and businesses. Lean Startup philosophies are changing the way startups do business and existing companies build new products across the globe. The Basics introduces entrepreneurs to the tools to minimize risk by systematically building products that customers want.
It’s ideal for individuals with startup ideas, startup aspirations, creative and technical individuals exploring starting their own venture, as well as experienced entrepreneurs taking that next step on their life’s journey.
The program will be offered over 4 sessions, Tuesday and Thursday nights for 2 weeks, October 21, 23, 28 and 30, at 6 p.m. Basics will be hosted at SEED$ office, 5 Municipal Dr., in Park Hills.
There is a very nominal fee, but scholarships are available. Call or email Janey Radford at SEED$ for more details.
On a personal note, I know the amazing group of presenters for the course personally, as I’ve worked with many of them since my time at Southeast Missouri State University before joining the FRC. They are creative. They are brilliant. They are engaging. And most importantly they are real. They are people I would trust my members and community members with to learn. Now that’s not to say they won’t challenge you. But that’s what it’s all about.
Just like challenging our initial plan for this program, they’ll challenge participants with their business ideas, and help them minimize risk and maximize the chance for success.