Why you need stress busting Techstars
by Vivienne Neale, MSc Entrepreneurship lecturer
One of the most significant causes of stress is the sense of being out of control. You know what it's like, watching the news unfold and suddenly feeling completely helpless. But what would happen if you had a tangible opportunity to kick start change and make a difference?
Techstars has a reputation
These events are known for being energetic weekends where ideas come together and are transformed into living, breathing concepts. In 54 hours flat you and other like-minded individuals may well emerge with potentially workable solutions that are more than a beer mat scribble.
This is not rhetoric or wishful thinking
In May 2022 Falmouth University’s venture studio, Launchpad, held its inaugural Techstars Weekend. Almost 40 people convened, then formed dynamic groups exploring, amongst other concepts, things like ways for fishermen to use tech to sell their fresh produce to the people who wanted it locally. Another worked through their philosophy to encourage landlords into long-term affordable rents rather than short term Airbnb tenancies.
In fact, one idea is now a fully-fledged company, and the founders celebrate the launch of The Good Robot Company this week. Elizabeth Chandler and Fin McCormick came to Techstars with an idea based around cleaning up the algorithms that make so many decisions in our lives. This ethical artificial intelligence advocate has already secured its first big client and the future looks very different in just three months.
Techstars is not just a talking shop
It's an opportunity to be with people, keen to effect change.
None of the participants wanted to give up a precious weekend without seeing tangible results. Everyone, of course, had a different motivation for signing up. Some used the weekend as a springboard to test concepts and interest in becoming an entrepreneur. One participant, Mike Turner said that life had never been the same since attending: “it was a fabulous event and the past couple of months at Falmouth Launchpad has made it all the more so.”
Roger Orsorio, who has been involved with the Techstars franchise for almost a decade warns that actually “life will never be the same after Startup Weekend!” He attended his first one in 2014 and life went on a totally new path as a result – “I'm so grateful to Startup Weekend,” he says.
So, what can you expect from the next Techstars event?
Stress busting creativity and excitement for a start and a well curated structure to help you pitch an idea, polish it and work with people willing to help you launch if your idea is chosen.
I was a mentor at the weekend in May and can safely say that constantly repeating and refining an idea can transform it from thought to product or service in a super short time. Ideas were interrogated, shaped, ditched, resurrected, and finally presented all over two and a half days. It was very exciting to see just how fast people can work when they are put under pressure and need to be accountable to others.
If you ever want to stress test something, then Techstars is your platform.
When the going gets tough, guess what?
The tough really do get going. A recession is also an opportunity to start a business, create ideas and change a broken system. With existential problems to deal with like food and water security, climate change, and the whole conversation around energy there’s plenty to go at. That’s not a reason to feel overwhelmed. Every large company started as an idea. By joining Techstars this September (16-18) you might find the beans in your pocket are magic, so throw them in the ground and watch them grow!
We look forward to seeing you and your ideas in just a few weeks. Remember, the clock is ticking!