Visit @ Startup Sauna

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This was a class I was quite excited about. The first time I heard about the Startup Sauna was about one year ago and I’ve wanted to visit it since. It is located in Espoo and it’s very easy to get there from the city center of Helsinki.

The event at the Startup sauna was about the business model competition, although most of the speakers did not talk about the actual competition much. The guest speakers were Mikael Jungner, Toni Laturi, Timo Kauppila and Kristoffer Lawson.

Mikael Jungner had a very good speech and I gained a lot of useful information. He talked about organizations; large old fashion ones and startups. The thing I liked the most was when he said that large old companies should have startups and entrepreneurs inside their corporate structure. I could not agree more! All the standardized employees are waste of resources and those huge companies need new ideas, critical thinking and motivated employees.

Also mr. Jungner talked about pitching, which I found very useful. As an investor himself he has seen quite a few pitches and also has given them himself. He said that pitches should be short (approximately 5 min.) and there should be references, because it gives a good reputation and that’s what it’s all about.

Toni Laturi from Palmu talked about customer understanding and about his own experiences (and failures) as an entrepreneur. I liked how he really emphasized the importance of the customer, because I have seen it (when working in large companies) that they tend to forget the customer in the large companies.

Catchbox is a Finnish company and they make microphones that you can throw. Very useful in big events, by the way! Timo Kauppila from Catchbox was at the event to talk about teamwork. He really emphasized it and talked about its importance. One should choose to work with people one likes, because they’re going to work together so tight that if you’re sitting in a small room with a person you cannot stand the sight of, it will fail. Everyone in the team should also have 100% commitment for the project.

One of my favorite speakers of the event was Kristoffer Lawson. He is one of the founders of Holvi, a different kind of bank (online). He talked about the shareholder agreement and its importance. But also about the values of the company. One should have values in order to succeed one way or another. If you are simply selling computers to get money, you will not succeed very well. You might for some time, but in the end customers are looking for something more than just the product or service.

All in all, I really enjoyed the event and I think the speakers were excellent. They had very well structured speeches and were not boring to listen to.

Hope to hear more of them in the future!

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Visit at the Aalto Protomo

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So we’d already had a few classes and this time it was all about Aalto Protomo. Protomo is a community that brings together people with passion for business of their own. They provide a space for people to meet and to discuss, to find partners etc.

We got to know the basic idea of Protomo and also heard a story of a startup called “StartHQ”. Very innovative and motivating startup.

I can see that Protomo is very useful for me at some point, but right now I really don’t know if I’ll need it. In the end, most of us have the teams in the same class, so it’s easy for us to find a time and place for brainstorming. Perhaps later, once we’ve started the market research this will become very helpful! I’m looking forward to getting to know Protomo a little better.

-M

Starting up

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We’ve had only a few lessons so far, but we’ve had a lot of information.

Most of the information has been pretty familiar to me, because I’ve worked as an entrepreneur for quite a while now. We’re using The Lean Startup-book as our course book and after reading just a few pages of it, I really like the book. It gives a very good insight of building a business model and has a lot of useful tips for anyone thinking to start their own business.

Our lessons have been mainly more discussion-like, which is good news to me, since the best way for me to learn is to discuss and do stuff, not just sit at home and read books. Last lesson we had was all about the business model canvas. We had this assignment of making a quick business model plan of a product using the business model canvas.

I found this assignment very interesting, although I wanted to spend a lot more time doing it. It was just a scratch and seems very interesting and a very good tool for building your own business. Usually you tend to forget one piece of the puzzle, but this canvas helps you to focus on the key areas.

I can’t wait to use this in the business ideas I have in mind! 🙂

 

-M