I just finished a whirlwind trip over the past three weeks. While it was a whirlwind in terms of travel, time zone changes, modes of transportation, and accommodations it was in terms of learning as well for me.
I had the opportunity to learn from my mentors/gurus and from customers and some renowned subject matter experts.
I would like to share some great learnings and takeaways here for all so that you could benefit from them as well.
Part 1: Blue Cypress Leadership summit
Elastik Teams is part of the Blue cypress family of companies. Blue Cypress truly lives up to their mission statement ‘WE HELP ENTREPRENEURS UNLOCK GROWTH’.
The leadership Summit was hosted at the beautiful Park City, Utah. The summit’s agenda was a series of sessions which I would say is an absolute gold mine for start-up founders. We had sessions on ‘Ownership thinking’, ‘How to close deals? ‘, ‘Budgeting workshop’, ‘Negotiations workshop’, ‘Sleep and longevity’ and ‘Building a winning culture’.
These are the finest topics by far that I have gotten to experience in a single leadership event.
My key takeaway from the ownership thinking session was that if we save $100/month by a cost reduction because of improved efficiency, it is equivalent to a $6000 ACV at a 20% margin. Isn’t that simple yet mind-blowing?
The session on Deal closure embedded the statement ‘Time kills all deals’ in every attendee.
The Negotiations workshop was conducted like a game with role play and 6 different groups ended up with 6 different results despite the problem statement being the same. There was immense learning in understanding what’s a true win-win deal.
Part 2: Learnings from my mentors
My mentors have been my bosses in my professional career and have always given great advice to help me grow. And the cool thing is they are open to help and provide guidance anytime when I have reached out. I missed out on reaching out and meeting a few of them. However, meeting some of them in person during this trip has been enriching.
On this trip, I learnt…
..about the advantage of participating in/sponsoring events when me and my Co-founder were a little sceptical of the same after a couple of events that kicked off our marketing journey.
..the power of good relevant content for the customer and to have the discipline to share it regularly.
..about struggles that they have had with recruiting talent and how they have overcome it.
..about their experience in onboarding teams and setting up their organizations to scale.
.. how and when to invest in the business as we grow and some abstract science as well to support those decisions
.. how to pitch to customers and more importantly what not to do.
I learnt a lot from my Co-founder, Ben as well. I learnt how to have a conversation with customers and yet cover all the points on your agenda. I have not been good at it and have always had a bulleted list, which is not the best for conversations and relationships. I certainly am far from mastering this skill but am committed to giving it my best shot.
Part 3: Digital Now 2022 conference hosted by Sidecar
The theme of the Digital Now 2022 conference was AI and Web 3.
Rolling out the content of these contemporary and at the same time, futuristic topics to an industry vertical, which is not the front runner in the early adoption of new tech seemed to me like an insurmountable task.
However, the structure of the content as it progressed from summary to basics to advanced and eventually to a prescription for implementation for the industry was very well thought through. And the speakers and their sessions were brilliant. The Q&A sessions helped allay the fears and mitigate the concerns of the participants considerably. There was a constant encouragement to embrace the new tech by starting small and more importantly as one of the keynote speakers said, ‘Be sceptical but at the same time be a visionary’.
I had amazing conversations with leaders in the Associations and Non-Profits industry and other Companies’ founders and got great insights both personal and professional. Although I was the only one attending from a different country, they had very warm conversations with me over dinners and Happy hours 🙂
At Elastik Teams, our culture is all about ‘Learn and Grow’ and I am thankful to all those who have contributed to my learning on this trip.