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!