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Boost Me Entrepreneurs have each other’s back

20 december 2018

Testimonial by Annelies Wybo – Adviseur at Kessels & Smit, the learning company

Recently I had the privilege to go to Stockholm with the entrepreneurs of the BoostMe Program* of Netwerk Ondernemen. During a 2,5-day International GrowthCamp the goal was to discover what international – and maybe Swedish – scaling could bring to their companies.

What was this International GrowthCamp about?

The entrepreneurs got answers to many questions:

    *How to set up a crowdfunding campaign? -> conversation with Fundedbyme
    *How to get ready for investors and an investors round? –> talk by WhaleShark AB
    *The stock market, an investment opportunity closer than we can imagine? -> We were welcomed Nasdaq Nordic
    *How to create an awesome team & organizational culture? -> Hyper Island introduced us into their way of working.

    Next to discussing, listening and having meetings with Swedish companies our Belgian entrepreneurs were challenged to hit the stage for the ‘Most Promising Entrepreneur’-challenge. They pitched against more than 10 Swedish scale-up companies at the Google Digitalakademin. Belgium nailed it and went home with the trophy !

    Some of my main take-aways out of this Swedish business journey?

    1 – Do not try to sell in Sweden

    “In Sweden, don’t try to sell. Invest in building relationships” explained Max Lundgren of FIT. The Swedish culture is built on trust. And so is the business scene. This means that building a relationships is key and trying to sell fast and furiously is really not appreciated. And it all starts with the little stuff: being on time (or even too early), leaving a thank you message after a nice meeting and especially being transparent on what’s really going on in your company.

    2 – The sparkle when talking about your team, is gold

    Sven Estwall, partner of FNT Ventures, investment company for fintech companies, told us what he thinks is crucial when he meets company founders. For Sven it’s also about the story the entrepreneur tells: “If something happens when the founders talk about their team, it changes everything. For growing companies, timing is key, but the team is the most important successfactor.”

    3 – Scaling up is not a soft road

    When listening and working with the 12 Boost Me entrepreneurs there is one simple conclusion: it is never a walk in the park. Guiding a company towards growth, equals suffering and hard, hard work. The ‘lows’ are severe and the ‘highs’ require humility, cool-bloodedness and perseverance to profit from them. And as Marshall Goldsmith famously said, “What got you here won’t get you there.” is so true for them.

    But as these 12 show constant (personal) growth mindset, endless curiosity to learn and huge passion for their businesses, they are ready to thrive. And on top of that, they have each other’s back.

    Curious bout the next Boost Me Program?

    The Boost Me program is the accelerator for (inter)national growth. In just 4 months’ time, both you (founder) and your company will be prepared for ‘the next level’. Immerse yourself in this intensive process. And remember: a solid ambition is a must.

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