The time to apply for the award-winning SheStarts program is drawing to a close.
Want to give it a go? What’s holding you back?
The SheStarts program, run by BlueChili, is a life-changing opportunity for female tech entrepreneurs all around the country.
The first group of female tech founder turned their ideas into fully-fledged businesses in 2017.
And every one of those female tech founders started with one simple step: throwing their hat in the ring.
I know, I know, there are a bunch of reasons why this is hard.
That’s why we’re going through them step by step so you can conquer your inner demons and take the plunge.
1. What if I fail?
This is the big one, so let’s start here.
Failure is big, scary and mean, and entry into the program isn’t a guarantee that you’ll succeed.
But you will be given the best possible shot at succeeding because there’ll be an amazing support crew around you every step of the way.
You’ll also gain insight and wisdom from a cracking line-up of mentors and advisors that you wouldn’t normally get a chance to interact with.
Even if your idea doesn’t end up changing the world (and there’s no shame in that whatsoever), you’ll gain a wealth of insight and wisdom others would kill for!
2. But I don’t have any coding or startup experience
One of the myths about tech startups is that they’re founded by dudes in hoodies sitting in a corner looking at lines of code.
Startups are founded by all sorts of people from all walks of life. Coding experience is great, but it’s a skill you can add with external expertise or a technical co-founder.
What’s way more important is the vision, passion and drive to make your idea a reality, no matter what sort of roadblocks are in your way.
3. I’d love to, but I have a little one (or ones!) to take care of
Maybe some offices out there aren’t great places to have kids running around, but this is BlueChilli we’re talking about.
Their offices are a kid-friendly zone, as they’re all about making sure that you have the best possible shot at inclusion whether you have a child to take care of or not.
The point of the program is to give women from all walks of life the opportunity to carve out a future in the tech entrepreneur world.
True story: One of the tech founders in the 2017 group almost pulled out of the program because she had a baby to take care of, but SheStarts director Nicola Hazell wasn’t having any of that.
4. There are so many smart people out there, I wouldn’t have a chance
So you’ve looked at the 2017 cohort of founders and thought ‘OMG they’re utterly amazing! I wouldn’t have a chance of measuring up against them!’
While they are indeed amazing, you probably are too.
You’re suffering from something known as ‘imposter syndrome’, something we all suffer from time to time where we assume everybody around us is totally amazing and we’re a total fraud.
But that’s very rarely the case. We’re all human – each with our own talents and quirks.
5. I don’t want to give away my idea!
And fair enough, too, but that’s not what this program is designed to do.
The way it works is that they take a 5 percent stake in exchange for $25,000 in seed funding, and then another 10 percent down the line in exchange for all the wonderful mentorship and expertise they’re going to throw your way.
That way you still keep control of your business, but BlueChilli has an equal stake in making sure your business is a success!
Don’t let your inner demons hold you back – take a shot at something that could change your life.
To find out more about the program, and hopefully apply (go for it!), click here.
Applications for the 2018 SheStarts program are open until midday on 6 November.