Ever wanted to cooperate with a startup? For being sucessfully in it, we recommend having a roadmap in order to start with an effective approach.
Define how startup engagement might create value for your company. How will it tie into an existing or new strategic imperative? Input from both inside and outside the company is extremely valuable at this stage.
Detail who will be responsible for startup engagement. Will there be a clear point of contact that startups can easily discover? These individuals need permission to be “out of the building” participating in the startup ecosystem. Bonus points if some have startup or venture capital experience.
Test and learn from various tactics for startup engagement, such as mentoring at universities or accelerators; hosting hackathons or “speed dating” events; making investments directly in startups, etc. Risks here: being focused solely on startups near your HQ, and lack of focus on stage or type of startup that best serves the strategy.
Craft ways to connect startups with your company’s business units or functions. How will you set up pilot tests or bigger commercial roll-outs? What new procedures or agreements can help accelerate these collaborations?
- Assessing Progress
Now’s the time to make the case for the organization to continue, or expand, it’s startup engagement activity. What data points best communicate the value you are creating? Circling back, how should you refine your strategy, tactics and processes going forward?