A visit to StartupBootcamp and Startup Village in Amsterdam

It was a great experience being in Amsterdam to explore the StartupBootCamp facility. I would like to share my experience that I had along with my colleagues.

Our first day started at the StartupBootCamp office. We were guided by the Program Manager of StartupBootCamp and the first workshop that we attended was David Beckett’s effective pitching techniques.

The key take-away from David Beckett’s session:

  1. Study the audience and understand what they seek to hear from you
  2. Never start doing your presentation rather think it out by writing first
  3. Make key points and derive a storyline
  4. Create slides from the storyline that you created
  5. Practice out the pitch in front of small groups and get feedback

The session was engaging and we interacted with a lot of startup’ers who were present in StartupBootCamp. We got a chance to pitch our product and got their feedback.

Day Two started out with a workshop on ‘Agile at Scale’ which was a research paper that was published by Harvard Business Review. It was highly contagious and we got to know what is important while practicing agile and how it can be scaled at different areas of the organization.

Key take-away from ‘Agile at Scale’:

  1. Agile is a mindset, not just a methodology
  2. The agile mindset involves deep change
  3. Agile is a strategic requirement, not a tactical option
  4. Agile thrives in an open culture, not a closed one
  5. The transformation of management is part of larger societal change

Check out the Harvard Business Review article on ‘Agile at Scale’ here https://hbr.org/2018/05/agile-at-scale

The day followed by a visit to the Startup Village at Science Park. We were awestruck by the ambiance they have set using the shipping containers. The University of Amsterdam (UvA), the City of Amsterdam and the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) collectively own the property. The Startup Village was not only exceptional in the architecture but also has historic grounds. It was the first place where a website was created and tested for NIKHEF which is the Dutch National Institute for Subatomic Physics that performs research in particle physics and astroparticle physics. It was also the place where internet connectivity was tested and signed during the initial era of the Internet.

We also had the experience to interact and listen to the pitches that were done at Startup Village. The session was organized by a startup called Moneyou which is an app to organize your free to spend money. We came to know the idea behind Moneyou and their traction which was well presented by its Head of Business Menno van Leeuwen.

Overall, we had a fantastic experience to carry home.