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"No talk, All Action. Launch a Startup in 54 Hours." So reads the tagline on the Startup Weekend website. On October 10 – 12, 2014, potential entrepreneurs in the Raleigh, North Carolina, area will have an opportunity to participate in an intense weekend event that brings together those developers, designers, marketers, and business enthusiasts. Over the course of the weekend the participants will pitch their ideas, form teams and work to launch a startup business. CT is proud to be a premium sponsor for this event.
Most business conferences follow a classroom model—the participants listen to a variety of speakers, with some opportunities for networking interspersed. These conferences can be inspiring and educational, but may not provide actual experience in building a company from the ground up. A Startup Weekend turns the traditional conference model on its head. The focus is on hand-on learning, participating and networking, with only a few presentations from business leaders interspersed. On the first night, the participants pitch their ideas to a group, the participants vote to determine the top ideas and teams are formed around those top ideas. During Saturday, the teams create their business model, validate their market assumptions, design (and perhaps build) a prototype and prepare to present their concept in front of local entrepreneurial leaders. Presentations of the team’s projects cap the final evening. Throughout the entire weekend, there are ample opportunities to learn from mentors, engage with others who share your passions and enlarge your network within the entrepreneurial community.
While the upcoming Triangle Start-up Weekend isn’t the first such program in the Raleigh-Durham area, this event is one of the first designed to bring more women into the entrepreneurial fold. Traditionally, the number of men attending these events—and starting businesses in general—has greatly outnumbered the number of women. As we noted in a recent blog, even though businesses with women founders or leadership fare better than those that are male-dominated, the number of women founders is still disproportionately low.
The Triangle Startup Weekend organizers are determined to change these percentages. Although the Raleigh startup weekend is not a "woman-only" event, the organizers are aiming to have 50 percent participation from woman, far in excess of the usual attendance. The organizers believe that fostering collaboration, learning from each other, recognizing differences, and leveraging the unique perspectives of both men and woman will lead to more powerful and community-changing startup ventures.
CT is looking forward to sharing in the energy, enthusiasm and creativity of the participants as they pitch design and deliver their business concepts. We will be on hand to share our company’s expertise and answer questions participants have regarding forming a business. Fora complete description of the weekend and to register, go to Triangle Startup Weekend Women. We hope you are able to attend in person so that you’ll get the full benefit of the team-building, mentoring, and networking.