Starting a new business is a time-consuming, hard endeavor that takes years of work… or is it? More startups are enrolling in Startup Weekends around the world to get their businesses up and running. That’s right—a weekend.
The event was created to encourage people to found new businesses in a supportive environment. The goal is for people to expand on their initial ideas once they get into the real world. So far, lots of companies, especially those who are involved in software development are thriving. Why is this compressed time so encouraging and effective for entrepreneurs?
Startup Weekends are planned in the next few weeks in Las Vegas, Orlando and Seattle, as well as in foreign countries. In fact, an app development startup called Flixy liked the fact that they got a chance to see who was part of the local startup scene at the event. This gives entrepreneurs in virtually any location a chance to meet new people to collaborate with and learn from. The sense of being part of a local community is a great way for new business owners to feel inspired and supported.
Pool of Potential Employees
One of the most obvious advantages of attending a Startup Weekend is that you are surrounded by other potential entrepreneurs. If you have a good idea of what you want your business to be, these people can be good employees (if they like your idea more than others). Also, many Startup Weekends are co-sponsored by universities. This means entrepreneurs who participate get access to young people who are learning new technologies and techniques that can be very useful to their businesses.
For example, the University of Hawaii has its own event to encourage more students to participate. The event is still open to the public, which usually brings in people who are a little older and have more work experience. The blend of eager young people and experienced professionals is a great mix for a new business. If you attend an event at a university, don’t be afraid to approach students and introduce yourself. Although everyone is learning from each other in this environment, students may be anxious to be a potential new employee or intern at your startup if you have experience.
The timeframe makes you focus on what’s important for your business. It’s not the time to worry about possible issues down the line. You discuss and plan for things that need to be handled immediately, like the name of your business, creating a presentation or building software prototypes. A founder of GoAnnotate, a writer feedback company that got started at Startup Weekend, claims focusing on simple things is the best way to spend your time. The only downside of the weekend timeframe is the pressure to make good decisions in such a short period of time. Usually entrepreneurs have had months, if not years, to really consider the pros and cons of a business idea, explain it to others, research funding sources, create prototypes and other preliminary activity.
The weekend timeframe is an incredibly optimistic time to get things done, but is an excellent motivator for entrepreneurs. It’s best to participate in one of the local Startup Weekend events if you’ve already spent some time focusing on your basic business model, but need an outside force to make you work harder on it. The pressure is rough, but being surrounded by other entrepreneurs should be stimulating.