Okay, this summer I took a minimal step towards preparing myself for the entrepreneurship course at KTH during this fall: I decided to listen to a Swedish podcast about entrepreneurship.
This was a motivational factor for me, it got me going and discussions at the dinner table, at the barbeque and at the beach got more intense and ideas started to sprout. This was not always greeted with enthusiasm; therefore I chose to mix my energy and thoughts about entrepreneurship with exercise, both in the way of cycling and running. But I always included this podcast-series.
I would like to share the essence of these podcasts, because they are rather lengthy and the hostesses often wander off in their thoughts. The fact that these podcasts are in Swedish makes in inaccessible for some of the foreign students taking this course and so it seemed like a valid idea to grab the good stuff and write about it. For those who would rather listen to it themselves can find the link below:
I would like to start with sharing a paraphrased quote from this podcast, which is the first thing that comes to mind when I hear the word ‘entrepreneurship’:
‘Entrepreneurship is not only working with something which you wish would exist, but also, that you want to work with.’
I believe that this quote is especially important to the students participating in this course, and the projects that we are about to embark on – what is missing in your life, can you build a business around that and do you want to work in that business or industry?
Back to the podcast, hosted by two women has found their calling. Sophia, one of these women, works with a startup that books complete vacations; this includes flights, transfers and hotel. What is special about this business is that it is heavily reliant on information: you can specify what type of weather or temperature you desire, how your budget looks like and such – and this serves as a basis for recommended locations and hotels that would match your wants and needs. Of course there is also the possibility to just brows through different destinations.
One obvious question for Sophia and her startup is where to start and where to focus: how will her clientele book their flights, will they come with pre booked tickets and will they need complementary information – perhaps guidance is what will be the most demanding and at the same time the least profitable?
In this episode Sophia has received feedback from a number of Facebook groups where she has sought feedback on her idea (this is also an important note for when we wish to seek feedback on our own ideas!). At first glance there is inconsistency in the feedback. Instead of going into detail, let me just state that the inconsistency is priceless and provides Sophia with a new split to analyze her company, the direction they are taking and how the clienteles psyche work.
With this feedback in her baggage, and after discussions with her business advisor, she decides to change direction of her project – she pivots.
Now this is a word that we are going to hear, and use and get quite sick of from time to time. This is self-explanatory in the context, because it is to turn around your/its own axis. And that is just that: to turn around and change direction.
Okay, so this is something we need to embrace, and use to its full potential. Because, like it or not, the question of pivoting is something we need to ask ourselves whenever there is the slightest bump in the road. And hopefully, just hopefully, we can tweak our idea, to pivot our business, in order for it to align with something we want to work with and not simply something that we would wish to see in our lives.
I’ll follow up with further posts about the issues, laughs and breakthroughs presented in this podcast as the course continues, hope this has been of some value!