Having a great idea is one thing, knowing what to do with it is another and sometimes seeking out help is the best thing you can do for yourself and for your idea. Which is exactly why I joined Escape The City’s 10-week Startup Accelerator- which fits perfectly round my full time job with Wednesday evening classes and classes every other Saturday. For those that don’t know what Escape The City’s 10-week Startup Accelerator is let us enlighten you.
In A Nutshell
It’s for those figuring out which business idea to choose, how to actually do it, and learning to maintain the motivation you need to launch your business- with both guidance and support!
As well as that by the end of you will have:
- A first version of your product or service
- A personal transition roadmap
- Your first sale
- Online Business identity
- Your target customer profile
- A honed pitch
- Test Marketing Channels
- 3-month Prioritised Action Plan
- An alumni community of likeminded entrepreneurs
So on attending the first two weeks of Escape, what exactly have we done?
Well after a great welcome weekend to kick us off into the accelerator we delved into the foundations of just how to set ourselves up for success. It was great being in an environment with such positive, like-minded people who were keen to pave their own way doing something that excited them. Escape Leaders Ben and Skye were great at making everyone feel at ease and really breaking down those first day nerves. We explored concepts such as the ‘Good Idea Criteria’, asking ourselves a series of why’s that really allowed us to analyse our idea in perhaps ways we hadn’t considered.
Making assumptions about our business was also crucial in order for the foreseeable 10-week course to be success.
What should we assume to be true for our idea to work?
Just because you think it’s a great idea doesn’t mean the rest of the world would think so. We considered the assumptions of our key users, the potential solutions to what we would be pursuing, as well as business, marketing and operational assumptions. For those who would worry about getting lost along the way or fearing they wouldn’t provide the ‘correct’ answers, Escape proves here precisely just why they’re such a great accelerator. You go through the stages of the day together and have intervals of team work which allow for discussion. You can hear from what others have to say, whilst navigating your own trail of thought.
There are a whole range of different backgrounds of those who are on the course-with a total of 35 ‘Escapees’. Whether they’ve come from a banking background or the arts, ultimately everyone is there for the same reason and that is to escape their jobs and learn how to set up a business. No questions are wrong- if anything they are welcomed!
We are now up to the point where we have a more concise idea about just who our average customer ‘persona’ would be and how to develop that as well as the various business models we could use to implement our idea. The Wednesday just gone, we did look at our first excel spreadsheet which was slightly daunting-especially if like me- numbers aren’t your forte. The difference is, previously I would have avoided giving a considerable amount of time to numbers and figures, whereas Escape makes you face these elements head on.
Every week we will be progressing and widening our understanding of how to start a business and how to avoid the pitfalls, but with the support of our fellow escapees and heading into our third week soon, there is already a very apparent bond formulating amongst us.
This week was more of an overview of just what Escape is, but each week I’ll be updating you in just what we did, as we progress forward with our business ideas.
So for those wondering…
Is this for me? Just who is this for?
- The entrepreneurially frustrated:learn what small steps can enable you to explore that entrepreneurial itch alongside your current day to day.
- Community lovers:build your network
- Advice hunters:practical tips to help you start your side business
- Doers:action focused exercises to launch your business in an evening
Keep in the loop for the weekly updates!
To find out more about Escape Leader Ben click here!