Tales From the Startup Readiness Workshop

VT KnowledgeWorks Startup Readiness Workshop

Even in the early grogginesss of 8AM consciousness Jim Flowers seemed vibrant and alert as I entered the Startup Readiness Workshop. We were sitting in the Lakeview room of 2200 Kraft Drive, home of VT KnowledgeWorks. Just now it was also the home of a happy spread of Panera bagels, croissants, doughnuts, and coffee.

He struck up a conversation with us as we waited for everyone to arrive, and as soon as the last person was seated he was off into the world of the entrepreneur. Jim detailed all the qualities needed to be a successful entrepreneur, including the possession of just enough mysterious Moxie to keep a project moving forward.

He touched on Five Powerful Habits used by good managers, Four Fundamental Factors that govern startup success, all of the Moxie secrets, and the Strategic Essence of every successful business.

As if this weren’t enough, I found myself taking mental notes on Jim’s presentation style itself. A business pitch to investors is one of the more challenging sales pitches a person could make. You must own that pitch and practice it like a musician practices scales, so that like a musician you can improvise on that pitch and phrase it to suit the audience. Jim’s animated interaction with his audience certainly had all the ease of long practice.

I feel poised after the Startup Readiness Workshop, bolstered by the basics of entrepreneurship and ready to spring forward into the next great idea. In fact I’m personally looking forward to the 2014 Tech Entrepreneurship Conference and Pitch Contest. The contest represents a great chance to observe pitches and feedback before I make my own pitch to investors. If you’re interested, apply here by October 10.

The next Startup Readiness Workshop will be hosted on Virginia Tech campus, and is gloriously free to all Virginia Tech Students, Staff, and Faculty. And in case you aren’t an early bird you may be pleased to hear that this one runs from noon to 4PM. Best of all, lunch will be provided.


This post is a first-hand account of the Startup Readiness Workshop written by Laurel Sindewald, freelance writer and researcher for Rural System, Inc. and Handshake Media, Inc., and site manager for Inside VT KnowledgeWorks.

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT KnowledgeWorks encourages and enables creative entrepreneurship world-wide, through innovative curriculum, local business resource centers, and a global network of cooperating regions, all focused on three essential contributors to success: clear understanding of fundamental business principles; access to timely, relevant information; and meaningful personal and corporate relationships. It is a subsidiary of the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, supported by the continuing confidence and enthusiasm of its clients, sponsors and friends, both corporate and individual. Its world headquarters are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Allegheny Logistics Group, Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, Bloomfield Partners, LLC, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Hodges, Jones & Mabry, P.C., Hutchison Law Group, Interactive Achievement, Inc., Latimer Intellectual Property Law, LLC, Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Phoenix Packaging Operations, Rackspace, Shentel, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union First Market Bank, Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

Speak Your Mind