Meet and Greet STunners at the Vihara Innovation Network

STun

Day 1 – Meet

Every successful individual knows that his or her achievement depends on a community of persons working together – Paul Ryan

The Adianta School of Leadership and Innovation (ASLI) is now on the brink of starting their very first start-up incubation program under the Startup Tunnel. Wow! What a moment. We now have a buzzing group of 17 start-up entrepreneurs enrolled into the Startup Tunnel (STun), the Adianta School’s very  first start-up incubation program. Persistent efforts over the past couple of months has resulted in this rewarding experience for all of us over this course of time we have interviewed more than 50 start-ups. Down to just 8 start-ups, we are about to begin our day with these STunners, who streamed into the Vihara Innovation Campus, eager to know each other and explore the space which they were going to be part of in the upcoming months…

A mini-networking session in progress as the founders get to know each. They will soon be co-working in The Startup Tunnel! — at Adianta School for Leadership and Innovation.

A mini-networking session in progress. During the next 3 months, they will be co-working out of the Startup Tunnel and building on their ideas alongside the Adianta Cohort! — at Adianta School for Leadership and Innovation.

We began with a session in the lawns – ice-breaker, which eventually turned into a discussion on risk taking appetite, the joy for solving problems and much more. Know more about it later in this post…

On the lawns of the campus, at an ice-breaking session facilitated by Aditya Dev Sood

At the lawns of the campus, at an ice-breaking session facilitated by Aditya Dev Sood

We began with a session in the lawns – ice-breaker, which eventually turned into a discussion on risk taking appetite, the joy for solving problems and much more.But the Delhi weather outside was numbing; and a steaming cup of tea could not blanket us against the chilling breeze, (low on ammunition) we decided to slowly make our way inside where the focus shifted to a business modelling canvas neatly pinned onto the glass walls lining the CKS-work-space. Incubatees were eager to grab a set of sketch pens and color the blank sheet in hues they knew best. What came through was a canvas filled with well articulated thoughts from each of the teams on their key partners, value propositions, customer focus and cost/revenue analysis.

Sketching out a Business Model Canvas

Sketching out a Business Model Canvas

Speaking to the limitations of the business modelling canvas, additional questions brought up by the Stunners around.The inspiration behind a start-up idea, the motivation to stay in the game and the definitions of success, were then sequentially answered as a means of cross-examining business model. We were excited about the prospects of the start-ups, the problems they promised to solve, and the opportunity to be part of their efforts. The Stunners were further encouraged to share in detail their experiences in designing, solving problems and innovating new concepts in a discussion about their key partners, value propositions, customer focus and cost/revenue analysis as a result of the business modelling canvas.

Startup concepts being exchanged to understand varied business models

STun offers a combination of insights on product development and start-up operations aided by mentor sessions, investor interactions and seminars on the same. In this regard, the evening session on ethnographic research sought to highlight the demands of customer needs and behavior. In the ASLI room, incubatees came forth to share the supplementing research methodologies they had sought help from to stitch a start-up.

The founders were encouraged to understand the users better by employing the tools and techniques of ethnographic research.  Seminar by Shubhi Vijay.

The founders of start-ups were encouraged to understand their users better by employing the tools and techniques of ethnographic research in a seminar by Shubhi Vijay.

Toward the end of the seminar, the cohort as well as the STun participants were asked prepare a 'dirty' field guide for their reference as they go into research mode on Sunday.   They also chose their area of enquiry. Migration, and education were some of the topics that came up.

Towards the end of the seminar, the cohort as well as the STun participants were asked prepare a ‘dirty’ field guide for their reference as they go into research mode on Sunday. They also chose their area of enquiry. Migration, and education were some of the topics that came up.

We were glad to host these young, enterprising people on the Vihara Innovation Campus a high five! to all the awesome moments we shared and the start-ups we have partnered with; these being :

Startups

Startups joining us for this session

Day 2 – Greet

We eagerly looked forward to this day as our carefully crafted crew of mentors joined us to share insights from learnings they saw in the relevant choice of expertise. Speaking of competitors and thinking out loud on how a few changes could affect the model profitably.The STunners gathered around to express their set of ideas to mentors, but before that, we thought it would be great to start off by relaxing with game of free association.

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Free association games

Stunners and mentors were asked to form a circle, a ball was thrown around; urging its recipient to say a word in reference to the theme chosen beforehand. For example, a theme on design urged participants to mention keywords such as ease of use, inventions, efficiency, style, trendy etc. The free association activity revealed mutual interests unveiling a chain of thought . We were speaking to each other in ‘few’ words whilst delving into territories our minds glided – resulting in a bubble of thoughts.

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Chain of thoughts on design and building a viable product

Meeting the mentors and pitching their ideas to them gave the Stunners a definitive understanding of how they were approaching their projects with respect to the business model - yet to be offered to the customers. Questions  from the mentors paved way for better clarity of thought and it is pertinent to mention here that some of the Start-ups impressed their mentors — as was evident in later discussions.

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Mentors sharing insights on the startups they were introduced to.

The pitching session was followed by a speed-mentoring session, in which the incubatees met their mentors, for 5 minutes face-to-face, explaining to them their business models with essential details. These ‘mentor dating sessions’ came to a close as we moved outside for a few drinks around the bonfire and more networking…

Before we wrap up this post, we would like to spread word of this one-of-a-kind incubator program. Your love your support in spreading the word, and introducing us to other start-ups looking for mentorship and further assistance in their start-up journey is important. We intend to inspire, empower and connect entrepreneurs who are on the verge of addressing complex problems with effectively simple solutions.If you would like to share ideas, brainstorm with us, or give us your feedback, we urge you to drop us an email.

To all those who have already been a part in this endeavor, thank you for being here, …hugs,hugs and more hugs…and till next time, Adiós!

Stunners

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