With ‘The Mission’, we want to give young changemakers the opportunity to develop their own solutions from first-draft ideas into market-ready business models. For our innovation programs, we are always looking for entrepreneurial minds who wantto challenge the status quo, and team players who take responsibility for their actions. During the onboarding week, we always preach that our talents themselves are in the driver’s seat for their entrepreneurial journey with us,and we are happy to see that they actively use our network. In fact, they do not only benefit from the direct access to our corporate partners and business experts but also from each other: a group of 20 talents from all over the worldwith different academic and professional backgrounds. To unleash this benefit, Ferdinand Zemella – one of our talents – organized a sparring session series to bring the teams together and help each other out.
Ferdinand: “Everyone has experienced setbacks, conflict situations or to not achieve goals – these frustrating events drain one's energy and desire to continue. Every time I experience one of these situations, I journal and try to reflect on the situation and learn from it. One of the tools that I have acquired is to look at the situation from different perspectives. I ask myself questions such as "How didthe other person feel about the situation?"; "How would Albert Einstein try to solve this problem?"; "How would an independent third person assess this situation?". Over time I have used this tool more and more and tried to give myself feedback on my own ideas. However, it is difficult, even if you try to take a different perspective, you keep your own paradigm to a certain extent and thus distort the objective perception. That's where the idea of the sparring session came from! At Futury, different talents come together withvarious exciting backgrounds. Leveraging these backgrounds while putting on someone else's "glasses" can add incredible value for everyone to improve our ideas and performances.
Under the motto of “The Investor Pitch”, our teams held their first sparring session on Wednesday last week to challenge each other’s ideas and prepare for such an important milestone. Each team prepared a three-minute pitch, including their problem statement and solution, and faced a seven-minute question round from a demanding (and rigorous) jury. Taking the roles of investors, bankers, and corporate venture capital investors, our talents took turns to bombard the speaker with questions.
The investors focused on the growth potential (and potential risks) of the ideas with the aim to invest inpromising startups. The bankers, on the other hand, are risk averse and rather want to seal a safe deal at a good interest rate while helping the startup to apply for different subsidies supported by the government. The corporate venture capital investors, lastly, consider ideas that complement andadvance the current business with strong financial returns.
Prior to the session, Ferdinand shared his knowledge about how to prime your body for a mental high performance. To overcome nervousness, he recommended our talents to get rid of negative thoughts, do something playful and breathe consciously to active the parasympathetic nervous system. Setting the scene with a mental game and a role play, he lifted the spirit, and his belly-breathing-exercise allowed our talents to calm down before the pitch-storm.
Our teams’ pitches were well prepared and during the question round, our speakers were challenged intensely to prepare them for ‘the real event’. Being on stage was agitating and our talents’ rhetoric and repartee improved quickly with every question asked – we can really look forward to the next milestone pitch.
At the beginning of our program, our teams focused on the collaboration with our corporate partners but this first sparring session shows how important it is to work together with fellow talents – after all, these five teams are one big group with the shared aim to disrupt the energy sector. Are you curious about their ideas? Tune in for the livestream of our Interim Pitch next week!
As always, stay tuned and stay healthy,