I am finalizing my time with the Founder Institute and preparing for graduation! The Founder Institute has been an amazing learning experience. Even without starting a company, the education received is well worth the time and effort.

I have made tremendous progress and gained a lot of confidence through this program. I have experience in developing products, but not in bringing a product to market. I went from having too many scattered ideas into planning a solid project as well as the ability to pitch my project; this is something I have not experienced before and have gained a lot of valuable information.

A great benefit to the Founder Institute is having access to a network of mentors and like-minded entrepreneurs that are a pleasure to work with. The program is not perfect, some aspect seem artificial, and some things won’t apply to you specific situation, however, it gives you a great overview and hands-on experience for those wishing to start their own company. It also brings you into contact with mentors and other experts to give you advice on how to do things properly. The working groups make certain that you are on the correct path, that your branding and marketing will meet the appropriate audience, and that your funding strategy is sound. They also help you develop your pitch, build a board of directors, and acquire funding. None of this would be readily available without the Founder Institute.

The biggest challenge of the program is the tight deadlines. It was sometimes difficult to keep up with assignment deadlines, family obligations, professional activities, as well as my racing. The weekly pace is fast, which is beneficial as it prevents you from sitting on ideas for too long, you are forced to move forward at a steady pace. I’m the kind of person who could spend months ensuring the brand, the website, the logo is perfect, to the point that it becomes difficult to accomplish the end goal. The Founder Institute puts you in the mindset of making meaningful progress toward the goal even if everything’s not perfect, you then work towards improving the weak points.

I definitely know much more today than I did 3 months ago. I’m excited to keep putting into action what I’ve learned.

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