Time Required: 3.5–4hours
Materials Required: Name tags, 1 pagers on companies, note cards, pens, timer
Space Required: Room with smaller tables with seating for 5–6 people per table.
The Mock Board Room is an opportunity for entrepreneurs to get advice and support from a wide range of investors and mentors in a format that is more in-depth than a traditional demo day. There are a few ways to use this format, so please feel free to adapt this to fit your program.
Cohort companies are paired with each other so that they can listen to their partner provide their pitch and give feedback. You want to have 3–4 mentors and investors for each pair of cohort companies to participate.
The general format is as follows:
Mentors and investors are instructed to NOT provide their names, backgrounds, or organisational affiliations until the end of the conversation. This is done so that the entrepreneur and mentors have a chance to share their business plan and be more candid about the challenges they are facing.
One of the entrepreneurs has 5 minutes to share the overview of the company and end with a challenge they are facing (that is NOT raising money) with the mentors and their peer. The mentors (and peer company) then have 30 minutes to work with the entrepreneur sharing their feedback, asking questions, and providing their best thinking on how to overcome the challenge. After the 30 minutes are up, the group then has 5 minutes to introduce themselves, share their backgrounds, and exchange business cards.
There is a 10 minute break while the entrepreneurs rotate to a new group of mentors.
Once at the second table of mentors, the entrepreneur who did not present in the first round has a chance to go through the process. They share their company and challenge for 5 minutes, then get 30 minutes of support and end with 5 minutes of sharing backgrounds and introductions.
Each round with break should take about 50 minutes.
Ideally you plan for 4 total rounds so that each entrepreneur gets to present twice, and in allowing for a small time buffer, this ends up taking 3.5 hours.
It is very helpful to end with a happy hour or meal following this process to give the entrepreneurs and mentors an opportunity to follow up with each other and dive into additional conversations.
We hope the webinar series has sparked your interest in Frontier Incubators program.