Week 2 – Entrepreneurship

The trip is getting more interesting and exiting despite the fact that I started to miss my home and my beloved ones.

Week 2 was dedicated to Entrepreneurship and I believe it was a perfect inspiration for those dreaming of creating own business. Who knows, may be one day I will apply this knowledge in my home country – Belarus, when I get back there. I have definitely been inspired by the guest speakers and their business ideas.

We have met with a number of successful and talented entrepreneurs: Ziv Navoth, CEO and founder of Paragraph, a company that created a mobile app that provides people with opportunity to discover and experience the world’s best short stories; Antonio Evans, CEO of SocialDraft and friendsEat.com; Bojan Angelov, a founder of Two lines and a dot LLC, specialised on service innovation and design, organisational culture, and innovation management. They have all provided us with great lessons on how to succeed if you want to be an entrepreneur. You definitely have to be persistent as there will be failures on your way and it is not about the number of times you fall but it is about the number of times you get back up until you reach a success. There is no answer to all questions, but only a path. If you have an idea, try it. Just do it if you’re passionate about something. Be open and willing to change. Be honest with yourself to be able to understand what you are good at and concentrate on it.

We also did a number of company visits. The founder of WeHostels told us his story of how he came to the US without even proper knowledge of English and was able to reach out to business people, pitch his idea and raise capital for the business development. Today WeHostels is a popular travel app for young people that helps them to book affordable accommodation around the world in an easy manner. The BrooklynResearch, another visited company, was unique in a certain way because it was the only one that was specialised on brining innovative tangible products, unlike most of the others that work with technology innovations, and mobile applications.

Most of all I liked the business model of WeWork company. In fact the core business is renting out offices. But the way they managed to add value to this business gives you a different perspective on the real estate business. WeWork positions itself as a community for creators and provides very nicely organised rental spaces for start-ups, it also provides networking opportunities and other valuable services. Do What You Love is a slogan, and indeed, in such a collaborative community entrepreneurs can better focus their energies on growing their businesses. I’d like to bring this idea to Belarus.



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