As a service provider in the tech industry, we are innately driven to help and serve others. For us, this means helping product leaders achieve the product visions they believe in.
We jump at any opportunity to personally connect with founders. We don’t take vulnerable conversations, shared laughs or deeper connections for granted.
Without fail, we put the founder first.
So earlier this month, we partnered with Tech:NYC and WeWork to offer startup founders digital product feedback and advice at the inaugural Tech:NYC Founder House.
What is the Tech:NYC Founder House?
Together, Tech:NYC and WeWork provided office space, curated programming and exclusive access to experts for a group of 25 entrepreneurs. This event connected founders with investors and partners, empowering them to seek advice and form relationships. Additionally, Founder House helped founders gain valuable insights and build meaningful connections with other founders.
Geared towards early-stage founders, Tech:NYC Founder House served underrepresented entrepreneurs building products in emerging fields like AI, climate tech, blockchain and more.
“Our first Founder House was a tremendous success,” said Director of Partnerships, Octavius Moore. “The founders connected with industry partners, as well as each other. Coordinating curated — and spontaneous — connections is what Founder House is all about.”
How is Innovatemap supporting Founder House?
We met with founders at the event to learn about their companies, understand challenges they face and offer product expertise. Because of our vast and varied experience working with digital product companies, we offer a unique perspective to help solve problems facing founders.
But offering our expertise goes beyond diagnosing design flaws or messaging issues. It’s never our goal to simply give feedback. When we meet with founders, our priority is to listen and to learn.
“Sometimes a conversation with a third party is all a founder needs to get out of a rut,” explained, Meghan Pfeifer, Principal Product Marketer and Brand Strategist. “It’s my privilege to act as a sounding board. It helps me to stay sharp so that I can serve founders to the best of my ability.”
What did we learn?
We talked about building a seamless onboarding experience with Castleigh Johnson from MyHomePathway. We discussed what makes your product usable with Su Sanni from Dollaride. And we learned about the value of consumer insights from Laura Rocha at Dathic and Jake Lynch from Fig.
No matter what they’re building, we noticed these shared traits and challenges among the group.
Founders are impressive.
These entrepreneurs are building companies that will truly impact the way we live. They are trailblazers, disrupters and game-changers in the tech industry. In a time where the speed of innovation is faster than ever, these founders are shaping the future.
“It’s incredibly impressive to see how founders take on so much and deal with so many unknowns,” said Meghan.
More research can make you more effective.
It’s critical for early-stage founders to gather user research before building the product, but the research shouldn’t end when the product goes live.
“It’s just as important to gather research on the buyer side,” explained Ashley. “Treating sales conversations like buyer-research meetings will increase your effectiveness and identify ways to improve your product.”
Scaling your company is not simple.
Contrary to what LinkedIn revenue leaders claim, it’s extremely challenging to grow your company. It requires time and resources that founders struggle to find.
“What gets your company from one to ten is not what gets you from ten to 100, “ said Meghan. “Scaling your company will require the same effort as founding it.”
What is the impact of Founder House on the NYC startup ecosystem?
Tech:NYC is committed to building the future of tech in New York, especially with partners like Innovatemap. With plans to continue Founder House later this fall, Tech:NYC hopes to use this event as a launchpad to scale the founder experience.
“We hope that Founder House creates a flywheel effect that sets founders up to become anchors of New York tech in the future,” said Octavius.
Partnering with Tech:NYC solidifies our mission in New York City. When we expanded our footprint to the Big Apple, we knew there were countless opportunities for us to make an impact. But to do this, we had to establish relationships and build trust.
Thanks to partners like Tech:NYC, we’ve connected with founders from around the world looking to make their mark on the New York Tech startup scene.
“I hope people see as helpful and kind,” said Ashley. “And most of all, I hope people know they can reach out when they need us.”
Because after all, we’re here to help.