We Sat Down With Ankit, Founder of NZ Tech Startup Ecosystem Facebook Group

We Sat Down With Ankit, Founder of NZ Tech Startup Ecosystem Facebook Group

It's no secret that the NZ Tech Startup Ecosystem Facebook Group is the go-to place for Kiwi startups. With 8000 members and counting, it's a great place to ask for help or tool recommendations, or hear the views of others in our ecosystem.

Recently, and controversially, the founder Ankit Sehgal posted the group for sale on TradeMe. Many conversations followed, so we decided to sit down with Ankit and find out the pages history, what he's up to now, and what he's going to do with the page.

Have a watch:

 
 

Our Digital Marketing Deep Dive Workshop Is Back!

Our Digital Marketing Deep Dive Workshop Is Back!

A highly effective digital marketing strategy is essential to the growth of your startup.

 

Our Digital Marketing Deep Dive is designed to help you develop one, fast. This popular event is back for the second year running, and is a unique opportunity to learn from world-class digital marketers in New Zealand.

 

Details:

Date: Friday 16th to Sunday 18th June, 2017
Location: GridAKL, 101 Pakenham Street, Auckland
Price: $599 (*50% subsidy available, see below)

 

Speakers:

GROWTH HACKING

Mark Hayes, Author, 'Growth Hackers Guide to the Galaxy'

Mark is CMO at specialist marketing consultancy Rocketshp, founded one of the world's first growth hacking agencies Growth Devil, and is author of internationally renowned ‘The Growth Hacker’s Guide To The Galaxy.’ Mark will cover the in's & out's of growth hacking, and how to implement growth hacking ideas into your company.

CONTENT MARKETING

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Carl Thompson, Co-founder Bronami & TradeGecko

After co-founding the successful inventory management platform TradeGecko, Carl has gone on to found Bronami and Momentum Marketing. He's a content evangalist, and will be teaching the specifics for good content marketing and how to create value-adding content that works.

SOCIAL STRATEGIES

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Tina Moore, Head of Social, NZME

Tina is Head of Social Media at NZME, previously co-founded social media training company The Classroom, co-founded communications agency Media Jam, and was Editor and General Manager at REMIX MAGAZINE for seven years. She'll be teaching the technical side of social marketing. Learn how to setup, track and learn from your social campaigns.

 

DIGITAL ANALYTICS

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Isikeli RaicebeAnalytics Specialist

Isikeli is a Digital Analytics Specialist and founder, and has spent 10+ years designing and implimenting digital analytics strategies and frameworks across multiple verticals including Financial Services, Retail, Telecommunications and Consultancy in New Zealand and Australia. He is a certified expert in multiple analytics platforms. Isikeli will be teaching how to build a meaningful digital analytics strategy and what tools you should be using. 

BRAND STRATEGY

Natalie Robinson, Founder, Mum's Garage

Natalie is founder of Mum’s Garage, one of Auckland’s largest startup communities. She has also built multiple entrepreneurial programmes and worked with over 100 aspiring entrepreneurs. 

Natalie will be teaching the fundamentals of building a meaningful brand, creating value and understanding your customers so you stand out.

AGILE MARKETING

Yi Wei, Head of Growth, TradeGecko

Yi is Head of Growth at TradeGecko, and has worked for the likes of Microsoft and IBM. He’ll take us through the new developing concept of Agile Marketing, and how to make it work within your startup.

 
My experience of the Digital Marketing Weekend in 2016 was amazing! From each speaker, I learnt many valuable strategies I can apply to my business. As well as ways to boost my business’s brand awareness and create value adding content.

I thoroughly enjoyed the weekend and the people I met were great. I would definitely recommend this weekend event to others wanting to learn more about digital marketing and growth hacking.
— Jennifer Buckler - Cofounder of The Misprint Co.

Who Should Come Along?

1. Startups and young companies with a scaleable product, looking for fast growth

2. Marketers working inside companies

3. People working on an idea who are pre-execution (the principles learned will fast-track your idea)

4. Owners of small and medium-sized businesses

5. Anyone wanting to apply the latest growth hacking techniques to their day jobs

 

You can qualify for a 50% subsidy from NZTE under their Regional Business Partner Network, if you meet the eligibility criteria. Apply for the Capability Voucher Scheme here. Please get in touch with Natalie (hello@mumsgarage.com) if you have any questions or need help working this out.


 

Want More Info?

If you'd like more information, or want to find out if the Deep Dive is a good fit for you, please leave your details below and we'll get in touch as soon as possible.

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Founder Chats: Zanda & Kyle From TinySkinScribbles

Founder Chats: Zanda & Kyle From TinySkinScribbles

We recently chatted with the founders of TinySkinScribbles, Zanda & Kyle, who have just gone through our latest CO.STARTERS cohort.


Q. Tell us about TinySkinScribbles?

TinySkinScribbles creates temporary tattoos from original hand-drawn designs that are unique and fun.

Our mission is to provide people with a way to express themselves to the world or privately without permanently marking their bodies. We also wish to give everyone the chance to be inspired or inspire others in an artistic and powerful manner.

 
 

We see people being able to change their tattoo whenever they please to match their mood, state of mind, or even their outfit! We want to help them be whoever they want to be and enhance their way of being.
 

Q. What has your journey been so far?

The idea was conceived when researching fashion trends in Europe and America. People in these areas of the world see temporary tattoos as trendy and fashionable and are often made by artists, designers and fashion houses.

 
 

We wanted to bring these ideas and values to New Zealand but with a distinct Kiwi angle. They would be designed in NZ for a NZ market and celebrate our national values of nature, adventure and creativity. We started sketching and painting designs in 2016 and began selling to friends and family and were soon at creative markets selling our wares.

In 2017 our online store went live as we doubled down on our brand and building a community with our target audience.
 

Q. Who are your target customers?

People looking for a unique way to express themselves. Also people looking to inspire themselves or others.

These will predominantly be young people between the ages 18-30 who like music, festivals, fashion, travel and adventure. We see these people as confident, artistic, free-spirited trend setters and fashion leaders.

We are also targeting those people who like the idea of real tattoos but are turned off by the permanence or just want to see how it looks and feels before committing to the real thing.

 
 

Children are also a conscious target market or more particularly - their parents. Recently we have found interest with companies and promoters wishing to reach a wider audience.
 

Q. What are your next steps, and goals for the future?

Besides the goal to inspire more and more people, our plan is to add more equipment to our studio which will allow us to create custom tattoos. It means people who have their own idea or artwork that they would like to wear could come to us and print it as a tattoo. This would open up the market of creating personalised tattoos or even the idea of giving a unique and personal gift to friends, colleagues or loved-ones.

 
 

We are also thinking about creating a subscription model where people would receive a monthly delivery of our latest designs and others of their choice. We are always working on new ideas and are open to feedback and collaboration with our community.


Buy TinySkinScribbles here.

And check out more on social media:

Facebook

Instagram

Website

Our Recommended Techweek Events For Startups

Our Recommended Techweek Events For Startups

With Techweek'17 fast approaching (6-14 May), we've pulled out our top picks for startups.

You can check out the entire Techweek programme here:


RAISING MONEY:

  • Amplify and Collision, Investors & Entrepreneurs (Free) - Auckland
  • Demystifying the Series A & B Investment Decision ($50) - Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch
  • Dojo Dragons (Free) - Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch (info coming soon)
  • Zino Ventures Startup Challenge (Free) - Auckland
     

GOING GLOBAL:

MARKETING & SALES SPECIFIC:

KNOWLEDGE, CONNECTIONS AND INSPIRATION:

  • EPIC True Stories | From Idea To Global Innovation (Free) - Christchurch
  • From Idea To Market | Maximising Value From Innovation (IP) (Free) - Auckland, Wellington
  • Hardware Meetup AKL | Aerospace ($10) - Auckland
  • Know The SaaS In Your Backyard (Free) - Wellington
  • Level Two, Deep Tech After Hours ($10) - Auckland
  • Startup Grind Auckland ($10) - Auckland
  • Write Your Own App (Free) - Auckland


CONVERSATIONS AND OPPORTUNITIES TO SHAPE THE FUTURE:

Check out the full Techweek programme here.
 

I WANT GROWTH - Our Techweek Event

I WANT GROWTH - Our Techweek Event

We've teamed up with Momentum Marketing to kick off 'I WANT GROWTH'  during Techweek'17.

This is an event designed to help founders learn strategies and tools to acquire customers fast.

The fast past, execution focused session will run as 4 x 10min talks + 5mins Q&A, delivered by some of the best hacker and hustlers we know. 

Held at GridAKL cafe space, Monday 8 May, 5:30-8pm.

Tickets cost $10 covering food and drink. 

 

Founder Chats: Cameron Stewart From Parametric Furniture

Founder Chats: Cameron Stewart From Parametric Furniture

We recently chatted with founder Cameron Stewart, who has just gone through our latest CO.STARTERS cohort with his early-stage company Parametric Furniture.


Q. Cameron, what does your company do?

Parametric Furniture scours the internet for the best and most innovative parametric furniture designs, then makes them in partnership with the designer using highly automated manufacturing techniques. We then send the product to the customer flat-packed, so they get to put together their new furniture themselves. We offer high-quality products for renters and home-owners at very competitive rates.
 

Q. What can we currently purchase?

We have three products live on the site, which we can manufacture right now (chairs, a small folding table, and a desk), and a fourth which will be up soon (the below bed). I've got some great designs in the 'to-do' list. Follow us on Facebook to be updated!

 
The Trestle Nomadic Bed Frame designed by Craig Stover - coming soon!

The Trestle Nomadic Bed Frame designed by Craig Stover - coming soon!

 

Q. Wait, what's parametric furniture exactly?

Well, according to Wikipedia it's this: "Parametric design is a paradigm in design where the relationship between elements is used to manipulate and inform the design of complex geometries and structures. It's a process based on algorithmic thinking that enables the expression of parameters and rules that, together, define, encode and clarify the relationship between design intent and design response."
 

Q. How does your company work for furniture designers?

People can design a piece of parametric furniture, and list it on our site. They then get a cut of every item sold. If you aren't a designer but have a great idea, no worries. We can design this with your help and start manufacturing it.
 

Q. Who are your target customers?

I am targeting a segment of the market that is somewhere between DIY and IKEA.

The products are low cost because they are flat-packed and customer assembled. The product is also not sanded or finished to a fine level, but the quality of the materials is very high.

Unlike DIY, the manufacturing technique used means that most of the hard work that requires powertools and a large working space is done. It is also done far more accurately and faster than any craftsman could produce which gives a very high-value low-cost product.

The P9 Chair designed by Alejandro Palandjoglou

The P9 Chair designed by Alejandro Palandjoglou

It's important to make this distinction of where the product sits amongst alternatives because it helps to define the intended target market. They are most likely to be young professionals with some manual capabilities that value unique products and derive pleasure from building/constructing things.
 

Q. What has your journey been so far?

My entrepreneurial journey started seriously when I moved to Auckland from Australia and was looking to furnish my rental. I was really surprised by the lack of an active second-hand furniture market (there is quite a healthy one in Melbourne).

It was really going to cost a lot of money to buy something that was both portable and good-looking. I felt that I could do better and build something of quality and worth lugging around.

I have been exposed to advanced manufacturing techniques at a commercial level professionally through my work as a civil engineer, and I have been a member of many hacker/maker spaces around the place - HSBNE in Brisbane and most importantly in the Santiago Makerspace in Chile.

I was in Chile for a sabbatical year and had the opportunity to join the Santiago Makerspace and do some exploratory learning. I did some courses in Parametric Design with a Mexican architecture collective called Chido Studio. They use parametric design processes with software like Rhino and Grasshopper to produce incredibly striking and complex forms.

I also gained some exposure to 3D printing and laser cutting which were important tools in the makerspace. This opened up the world of digital manufacturing to which I am still very much a beginner.

More recently I have been inspired by my sister who is a more serious furniture designer currently working for Freedom furniture. We have had some discussions about projects she was working on and it got me thinking about furniture and the interior environment as an interesting place to try and problem-solve.
 

Q. What made you start the CO.STARTERS programme for your idea?

In Auckland I had been going to the odd Android conference at GridAKL. I mucked up the date one day and accidentally gate-crashed an event from Mum's Garage. Natalie trapped me in her pipeline tractor beam and I was signed up for a course she was running at the time by the end of it.

At this particular course I had to define and communicate my business idea, which helped consolidate some of my thoughts and made me really claim the idea as my own. This helped it to become a reality in my head.

6 months or so went by where I was really busy at work but hadn't developed the idea at all. I got an email out of the blue from Natalie (I must have fallen into another list) and she told me about the  program. I signed up straight away. CO.STARTERS has really helped me because it has helped me maintain focus and keep working towards the goal even though the time and energy I have for my business idea is scarce.
 

Q. What are your next steps, and goals for the future?

I want to make some serious sales to really start to refine the product and test the market robustly. The next operational stage is to get a CNC machine. I am flying to Brisbane in late April to inspect a machine to import to New Zealand. This will allow me to drop my unit cost and do more experimentation. I want to setup a proper working space and start to do some events at markets to speak to more customers and make some sales. I am hoping to add more items in the $50-$100 dollar space that people will buy on impulse. Future goals would be to set up workshops in other cities, i.e Wellington and East Coast Australia. I'd also like to make the products customisable from your browser.
 

Q. How can we help you?

If someone wants something in particular, please hit me up. Also, i'll be looking for more designers to partner with, and i'll need to find a developer in the future to help me set up true customisable options for the customer.


You can check out Cameron's business below, and follow them on Facebook here:

Our Comprehensive Guide To Market Validation

Our Comprehensive Guide To Market Validation

Market validation is one of the most important steps when trying to build a business, but it's something that most people don't do well, or don't do at all. We're created a comprehensive guide for aspiring entrepreneurs and startups.

Q&A Ahead Of The China NZ Innovation And Entrepreneurship Forum

Q&A Ahead Of The China NZ Innovation And Entrepreneurship Forum

The NZ China Entrepreneurship and Innovation Forum is coming up this weekend, so we sat down with organisers Kevin and Xilu to chat about our mission at Mum's Garage, and how people can kick-off their entrepreneurial journey.

 

Kevin: Tell us a bit about your background: Have you always known that you wanted to start your business one day and what was the trigger?

Natalie: I was from Kerikeri, which is a small town up in Northland, and I grew up on a farm up there. When I got to the end of school, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, so I defaulted to moving to Auckland and studied Biomedical Science. I enjoyed science in school, so I sort of fell into that bucket. After studying for a year I quickly realised that Bio-Med wasn’t for me, so I switched to commerce, majoring in marketing and finance. I became really interested in starting my own business because I enjoyed the overall process of creating something. You get to implement every element of a business, whereas when you’re working in one, you are just like a cog in a wheel.

I had loads of business ideas, but found it difficult to implement them. I also didn’t have much confidence, didn’t have any experience in business, didn’t know anyone who owned their own business, and so I wasn’t able to turn those ideas into something more while I was in uni. I got to the end of my degree and decided I’d better get a proper job, so I joined the BNZ Finance Graduate program. I was in corporate banking for 4 years, and during that time I still had a tonne of ideas, but nothing I executed on.

The original trigger for Mum’s Garage really came from the experiences I had during a leadership programme I did, where I spent a week with 100 other young professionals who also cared about creating change in the world. This gave me the opportunity to get outside of my normal routine and think about things from a different perspective. I thought about whether I wanted to be doing what I was doing for the rest of my life, or even in 5 years time. I realised no, definitely not.

I then spent a year reflecting on myself and what I really cared about, and learnt more about entrepreneurship as well. As I learnt about entrepreneurship and started spending more time around people that were starting businesses or already had their own, I realised no one really knew what they were doing in the early stages. Entrepreneurship is all about learning how to start a business and developing new skills, and shifting your mindset so you can turn an idea into something. Understanding that really frustrated me, because I had spent 8 years studying a degree and doing a job I didn’t enjoy at all, because I’d never had the opportunity to learn how to execute on my ideas. During that time, I was surrounded by people in the same situation. The inspiration behind Mum’s Garage was the frustration around that. 
 

Xilu: Why did you choose Mum’s Garage as the name of your company?

Natalie: Because it started in my mum’s garage - I started running workshops in the garage. When I quit my job, I was working on a couple of tech ideas, so as I was learning how I could get those off the ground, I learnt about the process to start a business. The other business ideas kind of dropped away, and Mum’s Garage just grew. We haven’t changed it yet.
 

Xilu: People say you need great ideas, not just good ones, in order to start a business venture. Looking back, what made you think that Mum’s Garage was an idea worth pursuing?

Natalie: That’s a really good question. People don’t need to start off with great ideas, because I don’t meet many founders that run with the first idea they have. Starting a business is about figuring out what the great parts are about your idea. Everyone’s idea morphs and changes from what they started out as.

You don’t need a great idea, you need to go through the process of turning an idea into a great business. You need the right thinking, the right principles, and a lot of persistence.

What’s really important about the early stages of a great idea, is finding out what you really care about and what you are passionate about. Also, what you are good at. For me, Mum’s Garage was a great idea because I am passionate about creating and enabling people to turn their idea into something. 
 

Xilu: Do you then suggest there are no “bad ideas”, you just need to edit them into good ones?

Natalie: People definitely come up with some bad ideas, but building a business is a lot more about the person behind the ideas as it is the actual idea itself. People’s ideas get better the more they learn about starting businesses.

Bad ideas can become good ideas if the right thinking is applied and the idea is developed into something based on what customers want and the feedback from your market. A lot of people are halted by thinking that you need a great idea before you can go forward, but that’s really limiting, because the only way you can find out if something is a good idea is by going ahead and trying to get it off the ground, and learning what you need to do differently.
 

Xilu: What are some lessons you would share with your high school/university self now since you’re older and wiser?

Natalie: I didn’t know what I wanted to do, and I didn’t really do what I loved until I started Mum’s garage.

 
The very early days of Mum's Garage - an event held in my mum's garage!

The very early days of Mum's Garage - an event held in my mum's garage!

 

Most of the things I spent my time on during university, were what other people told me what I should do. People, such as your family and friends, can have your best interest at heart; they encourage you to do things they wish they’d done, or things that they think will give you greater value in life, but a lot of us are conditioned to go into a corporate job.

So I would question whether the things I did were because I enjoyed it, or because other people told me I should do it. The first part of entrepreneurship is becoming conscious about your behaviour, and the path you are on, and whether you’ve chosen it or whether someone else chose it.

The earlier you start, the better, because it takes a while to rediscover what you are truly passionate about and what you really want to be great at. If you can start doing the things you love in high school or university, then that’s really great because you get a head start. University is a great place for you to learn about what you care about, because there are so many opportunities and you are surrounded by so many different people.

Take time to figure out what you care about, and what really fascinates you about the world, and surround yourself by people who care about the same things as you. Be comfortable in that exploration stage. 
 

Xilu: After quitting your corporate banking job, did you have any doubts about starting your own business when you encountered setbacks?

Natalie: No, I have never looked back. I was lucky that I learnt a lot about mindset and techniques for keeping in a good state of mind from the people I learnt business from.

I never had a really “dark” setback, and even if I had I wouldn’t go back into that environment. I wasn’t in any way passionate about corporate banking, and it didn’t match my skills and wasn’t the best place I could add value. If it all went horribly wrong, I wouldn’t go back to that, I would do something else. 
 

Xilu: I totally understand that, because when I graduated from university, I had a lot of doubt about what I was doing, because after I graduated I worked for a PR agency for 5 years, and I was doing copywriting every day and that’s not something I’m very passionate about. And I have been questioning quite a lot, so you inspire me a lot.

Natalie: To just keep questioning is great, and there are 2 things that really help when you are at the “questioning” stage. One is writing and journaling down your thoughts. It’s really good because it makes you become more conscious about what you enjoy.

And meditation is also really good as well, and helps when you need to work long and hard hours. It gives you the opportunity to take a break from your constant thoughts. Meditation gives you a deeper level of consciousness. When you are thinking like that, it empowers you and allows you to think more rationally about what you are doing and how you want to change.
 

Xilu: I will definitely take it as a good suggestion and give a good think about it.

Xilu: In a world where everyone is not suited to be entrepreneurs, what kind of people coming through your consultancy, and you immediately know, that he or she would be successful in what they pursue.

Natalie: Most people are not suited to be entrepreneurs because we are conditioned to be employees. In much of our upbringing, we are taught to fit into a system where we are told to follow others. In school, you follow rules; in university, you are taught how you can operate within a business.

Most people don’t have the skills/mindset to be an entrepreneur right off the bat. That’s why Mum’s Garage exists - we are here to teach people the skills/mindset. The people that excite me most, and the ones who I think will be successful, might not have the skills or mindset at that point in time when they first come to mum’s garage. It’s more about the idea they have, where it came from, and if they are truly passionate about their idea(s). If they are truly passionate, they will put in the work in gaining the new skills to get them off the ground.

They also have the experience that gives them different viewpoints for solving problems. We always talk about startups as as a problem to solve. If someone has experienced something and that gives them a different view on the world, then that’s really exciting.
 

Xilu: What is a great team in your dictionary?

Natalie: Building a really great team is a hard part of starting a business, but the thing that makes a great team is when you’re brought together under a common objective  – the vision for your company. Held together by common values, you care about the same thing. That’s what creates the unification of a team, but at the same time every individual is different in terms of their strengths and the way they think. 

People often get in a team with someone that’s similar to them, because they get on very well, but to have a great team, you need to have different strengths. One team member can be great at certain things, and another team member makes up for any weaknesses by being great at other things. Have a system which allows a person to do what they are good at. 

I have a good friend who as a background in health science. She shared an analogy for a business that I think it really fitting, and that is that an organisation operates like a human body. The vision, culture, shared values and systems hold the business together. Then you have individuals or departments which each have their own function, like you have the organs in your body. They work best when they’ve got their own distinct functions, but need the common objective and strong connections and pathways (communication) that keeps them all working with the same purpose. 
 

Xilu: How do you like your team at Mum’s Garage?

Natalie: I have an awesome team. There’s 3 of us now, one full time and one part time. They’re great at the things I’m not good at. Elyse, who’s head of Marketing and Product, is excellent at executing on new ideas and keeping structure so we’re delivering on things well. Patrick is the third person in the team, and only works part time. He’s working on improving our operational processes and strategy, so we can automate more tasks and make the “machine run smoother”.

We all care a lot about helping more people to bring their ideas to life and build companies that will have a material positive impact on the world. We also share a similar core set of values which helps us to work together.
 

Kevin: Why do you think this forum is worth coming? 

Natalie: I think it’s great for graduates or students who are interested in entrepreneurship. I think it’s really good to get an understanding on how you can go from having a great idea, to actually starting something. In my session, I will try share as much value as possible on how you can transition out of a job and how you can take those first steps. It will also be good to hear about other people’s stories.

Often, you don’t get to hear about the early part of their stories, so it’s a cool opportunity to hear about that. Also it’s a great opportunity to connect with people who are also interested in entrepreneurship as well. Finding a new community of like-minded people is really important. And, it’s an awesome opportunity to find out about opportunities in China. The more you know about where the world is moving, the better equipped you are to make good decisions for your startup. There are definitely a lot of opportunities for startups in China.
 

Xilu: Is there any advice you want to give students or graduates? Do you encourage them to at least pursue their career step by step in the first stage, and get a general idea of what they want to do in the future? Or do you suggest that they should go with what you are passionate about right after graduation?

Natalie: One piece of advice which influenced my path was when someone said if you want to start a business, go and learn how to start a business on someone else’s pay cheque. Get paid to learn about starting a business, and that was part of the reason why I joined the bank. But in all honesty, there were very few skills I carried over from being part of an existing business that I could apply to starting a new business, apart from personal maturity. I became more mature and learnt more about existing business management, but starting a business is very different from working in an existing business.

If you want to start a business, my advice is, choose an idea which is a real problem to solve, and find a community to help you bring that idea to life. Or, find an early stage startup where you can potentially work in. You’ll be able to see the early stages of starting a business, which is beneficial because you can see any mistakes or what they have done well, then apply those learnings to your future business.

Or work in a job in an area you truly love – then you can identify opportunities and problems that exist in that area. If you have experience and expertise in an area you are passionate about, it’s a good breeding ground for great ideas. 
 

Sam: What other skillsets do you think someone should acquire at the university stage if they wish to start their business after they graduate?

Natalie: It depends on the person and what they want to do. Firstly, do something that really interests you. Finding an idea you are really passionate about or a problem you are passionate about solving is a great place to start. If you don’t know your passion, then there are a couple of areas which are most beneficial for teaching practical skills. They are anything to do with human behaviour, as business is much about your ability to influence human behaviour. Something like psychology or design is great as it gets people thinking about solving problems with products.

Secondly, physics principles are great because they teach you how to solve problems based on fundamental truths. That is really valuable because you break things down into their core variables, which feeds into the early steps of starting up a business. Thirdly, think about the way in which the world is going. So something like computer science, software development, or artificial intelligence. But to be honest, it doesn’t really matter. I researched what other successful founders have studied and it varies so much from arts, engineering, science, etc.  There’s no one way, so do something that interests you the most.
 

Xilu: Actually, one of the entrepreneurs he used to work as the CEO of google in China and now he has his own startup business, his name is Li Kaifu. During an interview, he believes in 10 years artificial intelligence will replace 50% of human jobs but that’s why he’s investing a lot into creation, helping people to build stuff. You’re doing something similar which is really great, because robots can’t build their own business.

Natalie: Yes, I agree. The implications of artificial intelligence are potentially quite scary so you need to be new creating value, otherwise the jobs you do will be done by robots.
 

Xilu: So perhaps if you kept working in corporate banking, you will be replaced by robots as well.

Natalie: A founder I spoke to recently put it like this - "often people say it’s risky to start a business, but staying in a job that’s going to be replaced in the next 10 years, or working in a job you do not enjoy, seems to be a bigger risk than starting your own business."