Joy Fairbanks shares an article that offers a few key tips for ventures to improve their pitch.
15 minutes are so over.
Founders, you have thirty seconds to explain why the venture you work on day and night is worth someone’s attention. You are innovative, your technology sizzles, and you have a talented team. You even have traction. You get so excited that you dive right into the technology. Time’s up. You didn’t clearly identify a problem, you didn’t mention how your solution is different than the competition, and you didn’t get a chance to explain who and how many would care enough to pay for this solution. The listener has no idea whether 12 people would pay for this or 12 million. Try again.
Let us be clear about one thing. It does not matter whether you have 30 seconds or 15 minutes in the spotlight. The person you are addressing will only have a mental pocket of about 30 seconds to capture the key elements of your venture. Your goal is to enable this person to convince others to get you what you want: money, customers, or strategic partners.
What is likely to get someone’s attention regardless of what industry they are in? Answer: An opportunity to make stacks of cash because a whole bunch of people have an unmet need for which you have a scalable solution. Please go on. Your prey is curious and is bound to know someone that can help you. What do you say next not to ruin the mojo you have created?
Talk about how your solution is unlike or better than competitive alternatives by features of customer choice. Very cool! Next tell your engaged listener about the stage of your company and your competitive positioning as a team. Done? Nope.
Tell the listener what you seek. Is it money, customer introductions, partnerships? If it is money, summarize how you have raised funds so far, what you have done with these funds, and how you will deploy new funds. Fundraising is based on milestones. Show them.
Key points include:
- The 30-second gate
Giving your solution insight and edge
Clarifying the ask
Read the full article, 30 Seconds of Fame: A Guide for Founders, on FairbanksVentureAdvisors.com.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Daniel Behr. Daniel is an entrepreneurial leader skilled at developing and implementing growth and innovation strategies. He brings a unique combination of experiences in strategy consulting, startups, business development and the commercialization of new technologies in the life and physical sciences. Daniel seeks to help leadership teams figure out “where to play” and “how to win”. He is based in the Boston area.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Paul Harrington with Pathfinder Consulting Group. Prior to launching Pathfinder Consulting Group LLC, Paul spent ~9 years with McKinsey & Company, where he was a Partner based in Washington D.C. Within the firm’s Global Public and Social Sector Practice, Paul led the Go to Market (GTM) team, which spanned 23 countries.
Prior to McKinsey, Paul held roles General Dynamics Information Technology, Johnson & Johnson, Ariba (now part of SAP) and Andersen Consulting (now Accenture), and is a former U.S. Army officer. Paul has particular expertise in Public Sector Go to Market strategy and operating models, as both an advisor and practitioner.
Paul lives in Northern Virginia (near Washington, D.C.) with his wife and son. Paul is happy to collaborate on any topics related to Public Sector and/or GTM.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Taoufik El Khazzani. Tao spent 2 years within the Operations practice at McKinsey working within the telecom, hi-tech and automotive sectors. Following this first consulting experience, he joined Vivendi to lead trend forecast and strategy projects in the telecom and media space.
He then decided to add another expertise focusing on the luxury and fashion industries : after a M.S. at Institut Français de la Mode (IFM), he has managed strategy and business development for various brands, large and small. He is always excited to collaborate on projects linked to creative industries
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Tomás Elewaut with Hopen – Management Consulting. Tomás spent seven years at McKinsey & Co., leading projects in South America, and has been running his own consulting firm focused on strategy, organization and business development since 2012.
Before starting his own consulting practice, he was founder and business development manager of and important agribusiness operation that raised capital from US institutional investors and the IFC (International Finance Corporation). Prior to McKinsey, he worked for the Techint Group and Banco Galicia. Tomás has particular expertise in strategy and general management advise, as well as board organization, as he currently serves in the board of a renowned nonprofit hospital.
He lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina with his wife and three undergrad school age children. Tomás is happy to collaborate on projects involving strategy, organization, business development and general management advise.
Aneta Key shares a concise post that explains the purpose and benefits of her company’s GrowthKey programs.
One way to increase the leadership capacity of your organization is to invest in the development of your people and build organizational capabilities. The GrowthKey Programs help you do just that.
GrowthKey blended learning approach
The GrowthKey professional development programs develop critical strategic, problem-solving, and interpersonal capabilities to elevate the confidence and performance of leaders, high performers groomed for cross-functional assignments, up-and-comers, partners, project managers, and consultants.
The programs may mesh one or more of these elements depending on your unique needs:
Synchronous (virtual or in-person) “intensives” to galvanize learning — A core element that kick-starts learning. Custom content is developed based on client objectives and needs assessment for learners (e.g., High Potentials, Team Leaders, Project Managers, new hires). Durations last from multi-day “boot camp” formats to half-a-day “deep-dive” formats.
Key points include:
- The comprehensive global program
- The targeted local program
Read the full post, GrowthKey — Blended learning model for custom corporate training programs, on the Aedeapartners.com.
Amanda Setili shares a few practices designed to help you excel at both long-term and short-term thinking.
Every one of us knows well the constant tug-of-war between long and short-term thinking. You want to lose weight, but you also deeply desire that double chocolate cake. You want to put a new roof on your house, but you also have your heart set on a restorative summer vacation.
Long-term big thinking is the foundation of all major accomplishments. From the interstate highway system to the automobile manufacturing plants that populated it, such accomplishments are the result of decision makers’ choice to invest—sometimes painfully–now to create impact across many decades. But they also are the result of countless individuals working one day at a time.
So—as you already know—the trick is to excel at both short as well as long-term thinking, each in its place. But that is harder to do than it sounds. Here are a few practices I’ve found helpful:
Key points include:
- Incent short-term behaviors that have long-term benefits
- Work on both fronts at once
- Progress of all sizes
Read the full article, Navigating the Constant Tension Between Long and Short-Term Thinking, on LinkedIn.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Alun Thomas with Thema. Alun was with McKinsey’s London office from 1991-95. He joined the Firm as an experienced hire, having designed bits of Aero engines and run a battery factory on the edge of the Sahara desert. After consulting and profit responsible leadership in blue-chips, Alun focussed on helping early stage disruptive B2B businesses. Alun has returned to his roots in West Wales and is particularly interested in initiatives that contribute to the decarbonisation agenda and to the Welsh economy generally.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Nigel Dews with GNG Partners in Growth. Nigel has experience in technology, finance, media, telecommunications, energy, FMCG and venture capital. This experience has spanned executive, board and consulting roles in both public and private companies. Nigel began his career as an Economist at the Reserve Bank of Australia before joining McKinsey & Company and working in Sydney, New York and London offices. Nigel has held leadership roles in many growth companies including as CEO of Fairfax Digital, 3 Mobile, Vodafone Australia, Message Media Group and UK based start up, Hue.
More recently, Nigel was a Partner and Director at Port Jackson Partners, a leading Australian boutique strategy firm founded by ex-McKinsey Partners. Nigel is also an Operating Partner with OneVentures, a leading Australian technology and healthcare venture capital firm with over A$500mil under management. Nigel and his business partner Graham Bougen established GNG Partners in Growth in late 2020 and are happy to collaborate on growth strategy consulting. We are based in Sydney and happy to work across Australia and New Zealand.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Christoph Traxler with Dr. Traxler Consulting. Chris has more than 15 years experience as an executive board member within Centrotec, a European group of companies active in many fields including medical technology/ in-vitro-diagnostics, precision engineering, HVAC, solar and plastics technology. Centrotec has 600m revenues, is publicly listed at the Frankfurt stock exchange, but majority-owned by a family, so Chris also knows the world of a family office.
Before Centrotec Chris spent four years at McKinsey as associate and engagement manager, with an industry focus on banks and utilities, and a functional focus on corporate finance & strategy. Projects he has worked on range from M&A via restructuring to risk management, usually with some analytical problem at its core.
Chris has studied theoretical physics and mathematics obtained his Ph.D. (in German “Dr.”) at Giessen university. His love of science and technology remained unchanged throughout his management career, in his free time he likes to look into new trends such as deep learning, 3D printing or smart home.
During his studies, he was advising a finance portal on financial derivatives calculations.
Chris lives in Fulda, Germany, which is a very central location between Frankfurt, Wurzburg, Kassel, Giessen and Erfurt.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Shailendra Gupta with SG Consulting. Dr. Shailendra Gupta is an alum of McKinsey & Company, and has 25 years of experience in executive roles at large as well as pre-IPO technology companies. He specializes in Strategy, Business Development and Operations where he has a significant track record of achievement. Shailendra has an MBA from Wharton and a PhD from the University of Maryland in Mechanical Engineering. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife and two teenage children.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Steve Rooks. Steve Rooks has spent the last 25 years driving value creation across many different industries as a private equity portfolio advisor to TorQuest Partners, AMP Capital, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan (OTPP), Sun Capital and TPG Capital, an executive at Avaya and Bell Canada, and a management consultant at Bain & Company. His most recent PE portfolio efforts were for TorQuest Partners and AMP Capital to lead value creation in their respective North American portfolios, for Ontario Teachers to drive a Lean/ Operational Excellence transformation at an marine container terminal operator, and for Sun Capital to drive a merger consolidation of the Canadian operations for a folding carton manufacturer.
At Avaya, Steve was the GM for the $3.8B Enterprise Segment and a major alliance with HP. Steve joined Avaya from TPG Capital (one of Avaya’s owners), where he worked for several years with management teams to drive value creation and turnarounds across a range of TPG’s portfolio companies globally, including rapid $85+ million increases in EBITDA at a coal power and mine business, a medical device manufacturer, and a casino and hospitality business. Prior to joining TPG, Steve drove a $250 million transformation of customer experience at Bell Canada across all channels.
Steve joined Bell Canada after working for 8 years at Bain & Company, a leading management consulting firm, helping to drive change across many different industries and on the full range of topline and bottomline business challenges. He began his career as an engineer in IBM’s manufacturing division.
Steve holds a BASc (Honours) in Mechanical Engineering from University of Toronto, an MASc (Honours) in Mechanical & Electrical Engineering from University of Toronto and an MBA from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, where he was an Arjay Miller Scholar. Steve also holds 3 patents in applied image processing.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome Mika Malin. Mika has broad experience in line management and business development roles, as a senior executive and as a management consultant. He’s tackled complex board level as well as factory floor level business problems as a consultant at the BCG, in a boutique consulting firm and as an independent consultant.
Mika has a track record of successfully leading businesses and people with a P&L responsibility, as well as planning and executing strategy and M&A transactions in a publicly listed media company as a member of the corporate leadership team. He’s sharpened his marketing and sales skills in world-class fast moving consumer goods companies, in both local and international roles.
MBA from Harvard Business School has provided him with a solid foundation for strategic thinking, an analytical mindset to problem solving and a structured approach towards business issues.
Mika is analytical but action-oriented, he believes in concrete strategy and brilliant execution, he like to structure complex issues into actionable concepts, he take challenges seriously but want to have fun in the team.
Mika lives in Helsinki with his wife and daughter. In his spare time he runs the Harvard Club of Finland as the President of a non-profit organization of 120 members, and what ever spare time he has left, he spends in the hockey rink or on the golf course.
Mika’s geographic focus is in the Nordics and Europe, but will be happy to discuss relevant opportunities beyond these regions as well.
Umbrex is pleased to welcome George Nahra with GZN Consulting. George spent four years in the Chicago office of McKinsey, in the retail and sales & marketing practices, serving predominantly retailers and other consumer-facing clients.
After leaving McKinsey, he spent several years as a Senior Management Associate at Bridgewater Associates. He then returned to retail, re-joining Abercrombie & Fitch (where he started his career several years earlier) and building the company’s first Strategic Planning function.
He then move to Chico’s FAS, a women’s apparel/accessories retailer with three principal brands: Chico’s, White House I Black Market, and Soma. At Chico’s FAS, George led Strategy, Business Development, and International.
George has been an independent consultant twice – once between working for Abercrombie and Chico’s, and most recently since roughly December 2019. He serves retailers across a wide range of topics.
George lives in Fort Myers, FL, with his wife and dog. He’d be happy to collaborate on any retail projects