History Tells Us… #1

Nice views on the way back to the foundation after a night of heavy snow

So, since there is a gap of around 8 weeks in my blog history, it is time to bridge it. I will do that with a few posts on these weeks and the things I did and learned. Today part one:

Looking back at what we did at the Kauffman foundation in the weeks we where in KCMO, I have to mention a few things specifically. Ted Zoller came back to the foundation to subject us to his 2 and a half day ‘Venture Bootcamp’. And he did! Ted worked with us from 8:30 in the morning to 16:30 in the afternoon, non stop touching on the most important aspects of startups, only to dive into every detail a moment later. The picture here shows one of his explainatory sheets, which look like complete and utter chaos, but is very useful and logic with his explanation (ok, I can’t find the sheet… In return I did find a very nice video of Ted @ the Kauffman Foundation)
This session ended with a short session from Nathan Gold, a presentation coach from The Demo Coach (www.democoach.com). Nathan started his presentation with some very nice magic tricks to get our attention and to clear our minds, and then, in as little as 45 min he reveiled all the secrets of a good investor pitch to us. Amazing how simple this stuff can be, yet so many people keep making the same mistakes (not to say that I’m not, but I’m now at least prepared to spot them).

Bill posing with the gang

The last thing I want to mention here, is the presentation from Bill Aulet. Bill is a professor at MIT Sloan, and worked with us on perfecting your value proposition and the determination of your customer. He showed the importance of being able to exactly, in complete detail (yes, even the type of underwear he/she wears), dertermine your customer. This is absolutely vital for determining how to approach your market, position your products or services and even for finding investors. Bill is one of those guys who can present in a convincing, yet very funny way, and still keep his full credibility. Amazing and great sense of humor, so if you ever have a chance to attend one of his speeches, make sure to be there!

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About erikkoerselman
I'm currently finishing my Bachelor degee in Aerospace Engineering at the University of Technology Delft. I'm also persuing my Master at the same faculty, in the direction of Design and Production of Composite Structures. Aside or together with my studies I'm following several business courses, which should enable me to become a succesful entrepreneur after my graduation. I'll write this blog to document my experiences during my 'entrepreneur' internship at the Kauffman Foundation in the USA.

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