By: Varsha Nekkanti

 

Throughout the four weeks of the LaunchX entrepreneurship program, we had the opportunity to meet with entrepreneurs, industry specialists, and experienced business professionals to discuss company progress and get feedback on our prototype/idea. Bippy’s mock board panel consisted of Alec Lai, the CEO and Founder of Project R, and Ashley Evans, former Director of Product Marketing for the School by Design in the Greater Boston Area. With their specialized knowledge in the industry of education, our mentors were able to provide our team with immense guidance and feedback that was essential to the growth of Bippy.

 

During our first mock board meeting, we pitched the initial problem statement our team had chosen to work on, which was the stress that high school students face. However, after receiving feedback from our two mentors, our team took a step back and decided to reevaluate our idea. By the time the second mock board meeting came around, we had completely changed our problem statement to be the issue of ADHD, conducted primary market research with a different target audience, and were beginning to start the process of prototyping for the product idea we devised. Our mentors were very receptive and welcoming toward our choice to pivot. Additionally, they were able to provide us with immense guidance on where we could test our prototype and how we could contact more potential customers to understand the features they would want in an ideal product.

 

From our experience working with an extremely helpful team of mentors and receiving feedback from interns and staff members at LaunchX, we were able to identify a clear mission for our company under which all our tasks have aligned. Regardless of the members that make up your team, having mentors for your startup is crucial to the process of developing your idea and prototype. After all, experience with entrepreneurship can only come from doing it–not reading about it in a textbook.

 

Overall, Team Bippy is pleased to say that our LaunchX mentor, Alec Lai, has joined our team as a mentor/advisor. We are thrilled to have an individual with so much excitement and expertise in both the realm of startups and the industry of education on our team. We can’t wait to see the things we will be able to accomplish under Alec’s guidance!