A total of 13 companies have joined the new batch 2 of the Microsoft accelerator. I thought I’d follow up on my promise to keep the conversation open about what I learned from working with very early stage entrepreneurs after my experiences with the first batch.
1. The biggest ask from the companies of us is our time, which we have the least of. Most of the companies have mentioned that they have very little time with us compared to what they thought they’d get. I know this for a fact since the last batch I’d spend a lot more time with the companies on product, go-to-market, etc.
2. Its amazing to see progress when there’s a lot of peer pressure. One of our companies is very nascent – less than 5 weeks ago, they started working on their idea. Last week I was pretty hard on them not having a demo to show, instead having PPT slides. This week they “wowed” the crowd with a killer feature. Just one feature, but I’d absolutely use their product just for that one feature.
3. A lot of what I believe we are helping with us product direction, go to market and customer development, but this time am spending equal time on entrepreneur development. Coaching many of the folks on hiring, building a high performance team and keeping spirits high during periods of not-so-visible progress is what I am spending time on in this batch.