Linda-3) What is your role in Mass Challenge?
I mentor teams competing in Boston’s MassChallenge accelerator. My role is to advise the startup founders, during their 4-month residency in Boston, on issues of strategic importance to their development and success as businesses or nonprofit organizations. I also assist other teams from time to time with introductions to relevant resources or other ad-hoc requests for advice.
Linda-4) What teams did you mentor (names, where are they from, etc) and how did you assist them?
The teams with which I am working most closely are
Estrenón, from Guadalajara, Mexico.
World Tech Makers, from Bogotá, Colombia.
Union Capital Boston, from Boston, MA.
Camp Casco, from Brookline, MA and Becket, MA
With my international teams, my role has included helping founders finesse their pitches for U.S. audiences. Communicating what makes these teams’ solutions so innovative and effective requires educating the audiences on the contextual and cultural complexities these entrepreneurs are confronting through their ventures. Similarly, startups based abroad may need to adapt some of their operational practices or adopt new cost structures to bring their services to the U.S. My U.S. teams are both in an earlier stage of development, and we are exploring models for monetizing their services. For them, the ability to diversify their income streams and reduce their reliance on grant funding will be crucial to their success in this competition and to their longevity. I am thrilled to be working with all four of these teams. They create tremendous social value. Plus, they teach me as much as – if not more than – I assist them.
Linda-5) Anything else you want to add?
I am always looking to meet other geeks, zealots, or enthusiasts in the areas of energy efficiency, alternative energy, decision sciences, big data, shared value/collaborative problem solving, solid waste reduction/recycling/composting, WASH, and social innovation.
Impact of Christine on Linda:
You can Introduce yourself to Christine and chat with her on Linkedin: linkedin.com/in/christinejauregui.