IDEAS ARE EASY. EXECUTION IS HARD
Nothing can describe the energy around great startup teams that have an unfair advantage of resources, refining their concepts into disruptive companies.
The deepest level of commitment. Deep dive with the founders each week and help them grow.
Help train our founders to be able to accomplish any goal or task both personally and in business.
Be a resource to our founders if they have very specific questions in certain areas of your expertise.
Sometimes our founders just need a door opened or an intro. Open your networks up to them.
The heart of our program is our mentors. Each team will have 1 (maybe 2) and will meet with them weekly at our "deep dive" meetings (preferably at Seed Sumo). We let the mentoring relationships happen on their own early on in the program and never force anything.
We look for mentors to have a wide range of knowledge and experience running a startup. The main purpose of a mentor is to "invest time into the startup to make them the best version of themselves." Get intimate with the companies product, business model, customers, etc. One on one meetings, phone calls, emails and Skype calls are typical.
There is a difference in a mentor and a coach in our opinion. While mentors and advisors are helping with specific directions and strategies, coaches focus strictly on performance and results. They push you and hold you accountable. They motivate you and fire you up.
At Seed Sumo, we have the privilege of having a world-class fitness facility so our coaching goes beyond just business, but we help our founders with other goals like (health and fitness).
One of the most important parts of a high quality accelerator program is the ability to help founders get over hurdles quickly and avoid pitfalls. Our startups have specific questions they need answers to and it is our job to put them in front of the right people at the right time. This is where our advisors come in.
We know that in order to get a deep network of advisors we need to make sure and expedite the time it takes from the advisor. We make sure our startups have very specific questions and we pair them with very specific advisors. We use an app called "TwoCents" for this process which has worked extremely well for us.
Connections are everything in business, we all know that. One of the simplest ways to help Seed Sumo out is to open your networks up. TwoCents is used for this process as well and completely streamlines the intro process. You link your LinkedIn to TwoCents and your connections are now searchable by our founders (and vice versa).
If they see someone that think will be able to help them out, they simply request an intro from you. If accepted, an email is auto-generated to the person (from you with the founders Ccd) introducing them.
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frequently asked questions
What makes Seed Sumo different?
Our 5 founders, our staff of 9 interns, our fund partners that have an interest in the teams being successful, and our Facility that these founders get to work in that includes one of the fastest growing consumer brands in the United States.
What obligations will I have as a mentor?
None, besides what you tell us you are going to commit to. There is no fee to be a mentor. However, if we feel that you are only here for your next deal and are not adding value as a mentor in any way whatsoever, you might not be asked to be a mentor again.
Will Seed Sumo pay for travel expenses should I be asked to mentor in person?
This is on a case by case basis. If we feel that it is imperative that you meet with the startup in person, we are more than happy to make those arrangements. Active investors travel expenses are always covered.
Where are you located? Why?
Our large campus is located in Bryan/College Station, TX near Texas A&M University. This is 1 hour from Austin and Houston and 2 hours from Dallas. We also have a satellite office in downtown New York that we use for certain parts of our accelerator program.
Will I be under contract?
No. However, most information you will be discussing with each startup is confidential, but you already know that :) There is no cost to being a mentor.
Who are the founders?
Doss Cunningham, Manish Patel, Bryan Bulte, and DJ Monteilh. We have recently added another member to our founding team in Steve Tinkle.