Startup Success Series : Mental Health

The Startup Success Series is designed to provide insight and education on the topics that matter most to the founder community right now.

Each week Startup Victoria hosts a 1-hour webinar for the community, focussing on a specific topic. There’s only so much we can squeeze into 60 minutes, so following each webinar you can access further resources in our Startup Success Series articles.

The Startup Success Series is supported by LaunchVic.

LaunchVic is Victoria’s startup development agency. LaunchVic invests in organisations and projects that empower entrepreneurs to scale innovative companies and deliver new industry benefits to the Victorian economy.

You’re an aspiring entrepreneur who has an innovative, exciting new idea (or 10) you want to turn into your own business. At first, your idea seems bulletproof, flawless and wholly original, but as you start thinking more seriously about making moves and turning thoughts into actions, you begin to question yourself. Is this original? Will it work? Can I turn this great idea into a profitable business?

If you’ve had these thoughts, don’t worry – most founders have. In fact, experienced entrepreneurs spend a considerable amount of effort validating their ideas before investing a significant amount of time, money or people into launching a new venture. Ideas come and go, but what’s important to focus on is the problem you’re solving. Your 10 ideas may turn out to be impossible; economically unviable or logistically unfeasible, but the problem you’re trying to solve with your ideas is the real gold.

This edition of the Startup Success Series will provide advice for first-time founders and early-stage startups on how to validate your idea, identify the problem you’re trying to solve and determine whether you should pursue it. We welcomed Nick Frandsen, MD and Co-Founder of Dovetail and Michael Jankie, CEO and Co-Founder of PoweredLocal to speak with Startup Vic Director of Programs and Partnerships Poppy Trewhella.

Virtual Event Recording

About: Watch the webinar recording below to learn more about Nick, Michael and their experiences as founders and with idea validation and problem-focusing, followed by an audience Q&A.

Timestamps

3:13 – Introductions
9:23 – How do you recognise a good idea?
14:40 – How important is industry knowledge?
16:31 – Bad idea patterns
18:50 – Terminology & validation
30:12 – When do you invest resources into your idea?
36:58 – Continued validation
42:03 – Idea competition
46:35 – Audience Q&A

Dovetail

Learn more about Dovetail and the work they have done here!

PoweredLocal

Learn more about PoweredLocal here!

The Lean Canvas Business Plan Template

Lean Canvas is a 1-page business plan template created by Ash Maurya that helps you deconstruct your idea into its key assumptions. It is adapted from Alex Osterwalder’s Business Model Canvas and optimized for Lean Startups. It replaces elaborate business plans with a single page business model.

Read more and download the Lean Canvas template here.

Reading Resources

We’ve collated online blogs and articles on idea validation:

The Startup Success Series is designed to provide insight and education on the topics that matter most to the founder community right now.

Each week Startup Victoria hosts a 1-hour webinar for the community, focussing on a specific topic. There’s only so much we can squeeze into 60 minutes, so following each webinar you can access further resources in our Startup Success Series articles.

The Startup Success Series is supported by LaunchVic.

LaunchVic is Victoria’s startup development agency. LaunchVic invests in organisations and projects that empower entrepreneurs to scale innovative companies and deliver new industry benefits to the Victorian economy.

The world of startups has carried an obsession with productivity for years. Programs like the 5 am Club offer ways to increase your productivity, but what about your focus? How do you know if you are working on the right work? How do you get your head into the zone when your day is littered with momentum-halting Zoom calls and working from home feels like groundhog day?

Finding and maintaining focus can be a founder’s greatest superpower. Building and growing a startup means your to-do list is infinite. You cannot manufacture time, so figuring out what to fit into each day is important.

That’s why for this edition of the Startup Success Series, we spoke with experts Dr Amantha Imber, Founder of Invetium & ‘How I Work’ podcast and Ashutosh Priyadarshy, CEO & Co-Founder at Sunsama on productivity, prioritisation and focus.

Virtual Event Recording

About: Watch the webinar recording below to learn more about how Amantha and Ashutosh tackle and view productivity, their tips and tricks, and an audience Q&A.

Timestamps

1:53 – Introductions
6:40 – What does productivity and focus mean to you?
13:53 – Setting productivity goals
18:18 – How Sunsama works and blank time
22:17 – Practical advice on prioritisation
33:00 – Top tips for minimising distractions
37:30 – Energy for less exciting tasks
41:08 – One thing you can do to move towards being more focused
47:40 – Q&A

Reading Resources

About: A collection of books, resources and webpages on productivity, time management and efficiency.

Useful Apps and Websites

About: Useful apps and websites designed to help you manage your time better and be more productive whilst you work.

  • Freedom – Freedom blocks distracting apps and websites so you can stay focused on what’s important.
  • Superhuman – Superhuman is an email client with advanced features designed to minimise interaction times based on the 100ms rule. Some of its features include A.I. Triage; Undo Send; Insights from social networks; Follow-up Reminders; Scheduled Messages; and Read Statuses.
  • Tempo – Tempo offers a full suite of time tracking and management tools.
  • Serene – Serene is an app that blocks distractions and plans your day on productivity goals you set.

Dr Amantha Imber Resources

About: Learn more about and connect with Dr Amantha Imber!

Ashutosh Priyadarshy Resources

About: Learn more about and connect with Ashutosh Priyadarshy!

The Startup Success Series is designed to provide insight and education on the topics that matter most to the founder community right now.

Each week Startup Victoria hosts a 1-hour webinar for the community, focussing on a specific topic. There’s only so much we can squeeze into 60 minutes, so following each webinar you can access further resources in our Startup Success Series articles.

The Startup Success Series is supported by LaunchVic.

LaunchVic is Victoria’s startup development agency. LaunchVic invests in organisations and projects that empower entrepreneurs to scale innovative companies and deliver new industry benefits to the Victorian economy.

In recent months, we’ve seen a huge influx of new, aspiring entrepreneurs enter the startup community. Many are on the hunt for a co-founder. Some are seeking technical co-founders, whilst others are looking for people who care about solving the same problem and want to dive in with them.

So do you need a co-founder?

Startups with co-founders rather than a solo entrepreneur have a much quicker journey to success, with Startup Genome reporting that lone founders take longer to reach scaling stage and are more averse to pivoting. On top of that, they also reported that startups with balanced co-founder teams raise more money – it’s clear that a co-founding team is usually greater than the sum of its parts.

This is why it’s so important to pick the right co-founder. Many compare co-founding to marriage – every decision has to be a joint decision; you have to manage and maintain the relationship and have shared values so you can move forward as a unit. Above all else, you have to trust your co-founder.

That’s why for this edition of the Startup Success Series, we spoke with experts Michelle Mannering, Hackathon Queen and founder; Alan Jones, startup founder coach and angel investor; and Tracie Thompson, CEO of HackHunter on how to find your perfect co-founder.

Virtual Event Recording

About: Watch the webinar recording below to learn more about Michelle, Alan and Tracie’s experiences with co-founders, as well as an audience Q&A.

Timestamps

2:16 – Introductions
8:05 – Do you need a co-founder?
13:10 – Diversity
16:50 – Panel’s experiences finding a co-founder
21:19 – When should you think about finding a co-founder?
29:00 – How to ‘test’ a co-founder practically?
36:20 – How to protect yourself and your business in case a co-founder relationship doesn’t work out?
40:40 – Q&A

Connect with Michelle Mannering

Connect with Alan Jones

Connect with Tracie Thompson

Startup Success Series: Managing Co-Founder Relations in Times of Stress

About: In a previous edition of the Startup Success Series, we covered managing your relationship with your co-founder through times of stress.

Watch the webinar and access the resources here!

Reading Resources

About: A collection of reading resources and blogs on finding a co-founder.

The Startup Success Series is designed to provide insight and education on the topics that matter most to the founder community right now.

Each week Startup Victoria hosts a 1-hour webinar for the community, focussing on a specific topic. There’s only so much we can squeeze into 60 minutes, so following each webinar you can access further resources in our Startup Success Series articles.

The Startup Success Series is supported by LaunchVic.

LaunchVic is Victoria’s startup development agency. LaunchVic invests in organisations and projects that empower entrepreneurs to scale innovative companies and deliver new industry benefits to the Victorian economy.

If you’re not seeing the success you had hoped for with your business, should you wind down your startup? It can be incredibly difficult to know when it’s time to kill your startup, and on top of that even harder to do so gracefully. For many early-stage founders, their startup is a labour of love – it can be as difficult emotionally as it can be logistically.

That’s why for this edition of the Startup Success Series, we spoke with expert panellists Ronen Heine, founder & CEO of LUNA and Dean Sperroni, founder of Suped Pty Ltd & ex-CEO of Vent on winding down your startup.

Virtual Event Recording

About: Watch the webinar recording below to learn more about Ronen and Dean’s experiences working with and winding down startups respectively, including their advice and answers to audience Q&A’s. Startup Vic CEO Judy Anderson moderates.

Timestamps

3:07 – Introductions
11:49 – Ronen’s experience helping startups wind down
17:00 – Dean’s lived experience of winding down a startup
21:00 – Culture of failure in startups
28:12 – The logistics of winding down a company
35:10 – Dean’s experience communicating with investors through winding down
40:14 – What can you do after winding down your startup?
43:05 – Q&A

Reading Resources

About: We’ve collated a list of online articles and resources on winding down your startup for further reading.

Connect with the Panelists

The Startup Success Series is designed to provide insight and education on the topics that matter most to the founder community right now.

Each week Startup Victoria hosts a 1-hour webinar for the community, focussing on a specific topic. There’s only so much we can squeeze into 60 minutes, so following each webinar you can access further resources in our Startup Success Series articles.

The Startup Success Series is supported by LaunchVic.

LaunchVic is Victoria’s startup development agency. LaunchVic invests in organisations and projects that empower entrepreneurs to scale innovative companies and deliver new industry benefits to the Victorian economy.

During the last 10 editions of the Startup Success Series, we have sat down with experts from all corners of the ecosystem to discuss topics like cash-flow, mental health, investment and more (you can re-watch all editions here). What we haven’t yet done is speak to a founder specifically about their journey – the highs and lows; the strategies used and the lessons learned from inception to execution.

That’s why for this edition of the Startup Success Series, we’re sitting down with Gautum Mishra, CEO and founder of inkl to discuss his founder journey and everything he has learnt in the last 6 years. inkl is a news subscription service that aims to be the ‘Spotify for news’, providing an ad-free, trustworthy source for your information from over 100 sources around the world.

Virtual Event Recording

About: Watch the webinar recording below to learn more about Gautum, inkl and insighs into the 6 year journey to get to where they are now. Startup Vic Director of Programs and Partnerships Poppy Trewhella joins as moderator.

Timestamps:

1:10 – Introduction
7:58 – What inkl looks like today
12:24 – Leaving stability
18:18 – Distinguishing good advice from bad advice
20:17 – How did you initially fund inkl?
28:26 – Asking for feedback
29:25 – Learning about the customer through experimentation
38:53 – How have things changed in the wake of COVID-19?
43:00 – The future of inkl
44:50 – Where did the name come from?
45:26 – Audience Q&A

inkl

About: inkl is currently available on the Apple App Store and Google Play. They have a free trial available – make sure you try it here!

Duct Tape

About: Late last year, we collaborated with Victoria University to bring you Duct Tape.

Duct Tape is a publication that explores the mindset of founders, with the aim to connect readers to the human side of the founder experience. The 1st edition is available via the website and can be downloaded for free here.

Square Peg Founder Stories

About: Square Peg Founder Stories is a weekly show about what it’s really like to build a technology startup. Hosted by Imogen Baxter and Square Peg. Listen here!

The Startup Success Series is designed to provide insight and education on the topics that matter most to the founder community right now.

Each week Startup Victoria hosts a 1-hour webinar for the community, focussing on a specific topic. There’s only so much we can squeeze into 60 minutes, so following each webinar you can access further resources in our Startup Success Series articles.

The Startup Success Series is supported by LaunchVic.

LaunchVic is Victoria’s startup development agency. LaunchVic invests in organisations and projects that empower entrepreneurs to scale innovative companies and deliver new industry benefits to the Victorian economy.

There has been a lot of discussion amongst the Startup Vic founder community in recent weeks about how to properly value a pre-revenue startup. Investment can be difficult to come by as we continue to adjust and get used to the ‘new normal’. Having a strong and accurate pre-revenue value estimate is more important than ever.

A pre-revenue valuation can be more of a negotiation art than science, particularly in the earlier stage of a startup’s existence where so much has to be estimated to come to a figure. Founders typically want a high valuation while investors want a low one to increase their potential return on investment, and finding the right estimate between the two is a crucial part of any startup journey.

Virtual Event Recording

About: Watch the webinar recording below for insights into managing co-founder relationships from 3 successful, local founders. Expert panellists include; Jackie Vullinghs, Investment Manager at AirTreeDominic Dirupo, Principal at Alphastation Communications and Adam Milgrom, Venture Partner at Giant Leap Fund, with Startup Victoria CEO, Judy Anderson moderating.

Timestamps:

3:11 – Introductions
7:07 – What is pre-revenue and pre-revenue startup valuation?
19:48 – Typical guidelines on pre-revenue startup valuation for founders
29:30 – What are the most common components that go into a valuation, and how do you put a dollar value on your startup?
33:09 – Common discussion tips for founders
41:27 – Audience Q&A

AirTree Open Source VC

AirTree is committed to being the Open Source VC – check out their medium page for a huge collection of varied content surrounding venture capitalism and investment. Read here!

LUNA’s Slides on Investment

Many of the links, tools and resources Adam mentions are included in these slides from LUNA’s Investment 101 webinar – take a look here:

Further Reading

We’ve collated blogs and websites that tackle pre-revenue valuation. There is a huge variety available by simply searching the term – here are some of the ones we found that were most interesting: