[Review] Startup Weekend
Founding a startup company can be very difficult, especially when you have to go at it alone. But it doesn’t have to be that way, as the co-directors of Startup Weekend – Marc Nager, Clint Nelsen and Franck Nouyrigat – can attest. Startup Weekend is the non-profit organization behind the 54-hour events where developers, designers, marketers, and startup enthusiasts come together to share ideas, form teams, build products, and create startups, which have spawned some of the more exciting companies – such as Foodspotting, Memolane and Plane.ly – in the startup world. And now, Nager, Nelsen and Nouyrigat has put together some of their experiences and best practices from Startup Weekend into the book, “Startup Weekend: How to Take a Company From Concept to Creation in 54 Hours“.
“Startup Weekend” the book starts off by giving a short history into how the organization came about, but quickly delves into its raison d’être – that the 54-hour events are an amazing experience that anybody who wants to be an entrepreneur (and especially one in the technology space) should attend. Startup Weekends, which takes place in many cities around the world, are a great place to meet similarly charged but differently-skilled people who can one day be your startup co-founders.
In the book, the authors highlight and explain many different strategies to help aspiring entrepreneurs brainstorm, shape and refine ideas into hopefully a minimum viable product, all in the space of, yup, 54 hours. There’s advice on setting up flexible organizational structures, idea validation, the power of experiential education, action-based networking, and such… but the most important thing you’ll learn from the book is empowerment, and the idea that you don’t have to go at it alone. While it does seem like the book is written specifically for aspiring entrepreneurs or startup founders, I believe that any manager who runs a creative or development team can actually benefit from reading “Startup Weekend“.
And interestingly enough, this week is actually Global Entrepreneurship Week, which means that Startup Weekend is just around the corner. If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur with an amazing startup idea looking for a team, or a skilled technical or business professional looking to contribute your skills and build something worthwhile, there’s every reason for you to attend the event held in your city.
And that’s even if you don’t intend to pick up this book.
Daniel Goh is the founder and chief editor of Young | Upstarts, as well as an F&B entrepreneur. Daniel has a background in public relations, and is interested in issues in entrepreneurship, small business, marketing, public relations and the online space. He can be reached at daniel [at] youngupstarts [dot] com.