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Startup Weekend: How to Take a Company From Concept to Creation in 54 Hours



Startup Weekend: How to Take a Company From Concept to Creation in 54 Hours

Marc Nager, Clint Nelsen, Franck Nouyrigat

ISBN: 978-1-118-15963-7 October 2011 208 Pages


Tested principles for transforming an idea into a fully operational company

Startup Weekend—the organization behind 54-hour events where developers, designers, marketers, and startup enthusiasts come together to share ideas, form teams, build products, and create startups—has spawned both a global initiative in entrepreneurship as well as numerous successful startups. Startup Weekend, the book, contains best practices, lessons learned, and empowering examples derived from the organization's experiences for individuals and small organizations to follow as they launch businesses. Each of the key beliefs outlined has been tested by Startup Weekend and has yielded powerful results.

The principles described in each chapter will give any business idea a greater chance for success.

  • Chapter topics include trust and empowerment, flexible organizational structures, the power of experiential education, action-based networking, and much more
  • Describes consequences for startup development as entrepreneurs and founders begin doing much more, even faster
  • Profiles successful Startup Weekend companies, including two powerful examples: Memolane, an application that captures a user's online life in one timeline making it easy for users to travel back in time and relive memories; and Foodspotting, a mobile and desktop app that allows users to find and share the foods they love

Apply these simple actionable principles to launch your own startup revolution.

Foreword Carl Schramm and Steve Blank xi

Preface xxi

Acknowledgments xxv

Introduction: Why Starting Up Is All about Trust and Empowerment 1

Marc Nager and Clint Nelsen 3

How Trust Led Us to the Greatest Adventure of Our Lives 7

Franck Nouyrigat 9

How We Empower People to Get the Most Out of Startup Weekend 13

Why You Have to Have Trust to Be a Successful Entrepreneur 15

1. No Talk, All Action: Action-Based Networking 21

You Must Join a Team 26

Breaking Down Barriers 31

Taking Advantage of High-Energy, Low-Risk Settings 34

Get Out of Your Bubble 38

If Not an Actual Startup, at Least Always Build Relationships 43

Diversity of Backgrounds Is Key 45

How Do You Keep the Momentum Going? 47

2. Good Ideas Need Great Teams: Pitch for Talent Not for Funding 51

The Magic of 60 Seconds 54

Deliver a Solution with One Sentence 57

Build a Team 60

What You Need—Talent and Energy 61

3. Experiential Education: Step Outside Your Comfort Zone While Working Together as a Team 67

The Importance of Context, Deadlines, and Instant Feedback 71

Braindump 74

So You Have a Viable Idea—Now What? 77

Learning by Doing 79

Risk Mitigation 81

Allocating Tasks 83

Recognizing Failure 86

The Three Main Criteria 90

4. The Startup Business Model: Adapt, Stay Lean, and Reiterate 95

The Customer Development Revolution 102

Getting Lean, Staying Agile, Preparing to Pivot 107

Communication Is Key 112

Stick with the Basics 115

The Missing Pieces of the Entrepreneur’s Curriculum 118

5. Mapping the Startup Ecosystem and Subversive Reconstruction 121

The Entrepreneurship Leap 124

The Cofounder Leap 126

The Startup Leap 130

The Funded Leap 133

The Scaling Leap 135

External Growth Leap 136

Leaping More Often 137

The Future of Startup Weekend 140

The Startup Foundation 141

Conclusion 143

Viva la Revolution 145

The Entrepreneur Culture 149

Your Next Iteration 150

Further Readings 153

Index 159