Dave is a highly ranked mentor for Techstars, Flat6Labs, 500 Startups, and Founder Institute. He has mentored for accelerator programs from Brazil to Moldova, Budapest to Singapore. Dave has a wide experience in mentoring multinational teams and individuals, offering a range of practical and efficient workshops and programs.
This program is designed for founders that are currently working a day job and looking to validate their idea before leaving their day jobs. It’s also for founders that are considering fundraising and are looking for a framework to become Venture Ready.
Opportunity Hub or OHUB is based in Atlanta GA was founded by my friend Rodney Sampson. In 2013, Sampson co-founded Opportunity Hub as a follow-up to the highly successful Kingonomics’ book release and large-scale conferences in Atlanta, GA, and Washington, DC.
Today, as Executive Chairman & CEO of Opportunity Hub, Sampson is focused on scaling its suite of collaborative and interconnected technology products, programs, initiatives, and funds globally in partnership with major foundations, corporations, tech startups, venture funds, municipalities, colleges, and universities.
The four-month programs are delivered on Saturdays in a 5-hour format vs. the three hours, weeknight format of the six-month program. This program requires the participants to complete the customer development and research in a compressed time frame.
Dave started as a Techstars mentor in Seattle WA in 2013. In 2021 he was named an All-Star Mentor. In 2015, Dave was part of the sale of UP Global (Startup Weekend + Startup America) to Techstars. He transitioned all of the programs, including Startup Next, Startup Week, Startup Digest and of course Startup Weekend to Techstars Community Programs.
Bootcamp programs use the same content from 6 Month Startup and is designed for startup accelerator programs to filter final candidate companies. The program is either three or four days and with the option of the financial modeling workshop including the most common revenue models for startups from Venture Ready Models.
Dave Parker is the Board Chair of the Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA) Startup Programs. These programs and efforts are part of a 10-year plan to level up the Seattle Startup Founders.
The Trajectory Series is based on Dave Parker’s book, Trajectory: Startup—Ideation to Product/Market Fit. Dave is a 5-time founder, having sold three and closed two of those companies. He was also COO/SVP of Programs and People at UP Global, the merged parent company of Startup Weekend + Startup America. The non-profit delivered 1265 events in 120 countries with 74,000 attendees before selling to Techstars.
Parker has also delivered these seminars and programs globally through:
Global Accelerator Network
Flat6 Labs- Bahrain, Cairo, Abu Dhabi, Saudi, Tunis, Beirut
Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA)
Equitable Innovation Accelerator
Korean Innovation Center (KIC)
He has also worked with OHUB based in Atlanta, GA to provide a cultural context for the programming for underrepresented founders.
With the WTIA, the programming is currently scheduled to expand from the Seattle market to Washington statewide via a federal Build to Scale by the US Economic Development Administration.
The curriculum is designed for adult learners but can be repurposed to support college students (over a semester or quarter timeline) and corporate innovators.
Each program has a set of deliverables. This work isn’t “homework” but is designed to get the attendee to do the work to launch their startup. Many founders will learn the frameworks and pivot to a new idea if they realize the idea is late to market or that they can’t make money with the idea.
For entrepreneurs that have multiple ideas and want to prioritize and test before leaving their day jobs. This foundational framework is designed to help founders become familiar with startup language and the basics of what makes a good idea (e.g. makes money).
What makes a good startup idea? The 11 frameworks for what makes a good startup idea.
Market Research/Competitive Analysis
Customer Development Interviews. What questions to ask, how to ask, and how to capture the data for future use.
Usually delivered over two sessions with a month in-between – time is required to go to the research and initial (20) customer development interviews and do the work.
Ideation Bootcamp Deliverables
Draft value proposition
Ideal customer profile target
25 customer development interviews
Feedback on go/no-go decision and why
Startup—Ideation to Product/Market Fit
For teams and startup founders that have narrowed down their idea based on interview data. Have a product in the MVP stage or ready to launch. Also used as a three or four-day bootcamp to narrow the field of applicants for startup accelerators. It also happens as a five-month, monthly program for adult learners. For students, it can be done as two sessions/week to a quarter/semester timeline.
Seminars are designed to be 60 minutes, workshops are two hours. There are 25 deliverables in these sessions. The work is consistent with the work required to launch a startup. This isn’t academic, it’s their business and livelihood at stake. The faster the work is completed, the closer the teams will be to revenue or pivoting to another idea using the frameworks they have learned. A successful outcome is also killing a bad idea fast and moving to a better idea.
Venture Ready Scorecard – how investors will judge your idea/startup and why you should too!
Telling your story in 11/13 slides
Research and competitive analysis
Customer development data
Awkward co-founder discussions
How startups make money.
Marketing and sales
14 revenue models used in tech startups
Pricing and metrics that matter
Building a prototype (MVP)
Traction and product/market fit (it’s math)
Product and company roadmap
When, Why, and How to Pivot
Pitch Reviews (varies based on number of teams in the cohort)
Ideation to Product/Market Fit Deliverables
Track your Venture Ready Score Before/After
What can you do over the next 90 days to improve
In Google Slides, PPTX, or Keynote: Start drafting your 11 slides
Tagline on intro slide
List your research sources and thought leaders, bloggers in your industry
Competition – in a Google Sheet, list
Competitors, capital raised, links to pricing
Keyword research from competitors
Market – outline your TAM, SAM, SOM (hint: it’s a number in currency)
What’s your Launch Addressable Market? First 10, 100, 1000 customers
Write is your pre-mortem – if you were to fail, why would you fail
Draft your value proposition
Outline your existing and required Customer Development questions
Have your awkward co-founder discussion
Document equity splits or changes
Pick your primary and secondary revenue models from the list of 14 – note why on your doc (competitor, market acceptance, etc)
Pricing model – user, tiered, usage, etc. Pick a launch price
Identify pricing committee members
Schedule pricing committee
Identify your initial key metrics
Average revenue (contract/user)
Time to Close
Identify Sales Model, Direct, web direct, channel
Business development plan and owner
Identify key partners
Outline your go-to-market strategy
30/60/90 day plans
Define what PMF look like for you?
What are the early indicators?
What tests can you run to create product/market pull?
Update your pitch deck
When will you decide to pivot
Company Road map
Quarterly planning (Supporting Slide)
Fundraising Plan (Supporting Slide)
Draft your one to two page executive summary
Write your Introduction email
Build out yoru Investor Target list on Google Sheets or CRM (HubSpot)
Fundraising activities goals (Supporting Slide)
Presentations per week
Investor Due Diligence checklist (Supporting Slide)
Program Feedback Poll and survey
Complete your pitch deck slides
Scaleup—Product/Market Fit to Exit
This program is designed to dig deeper for companies that have already launched and are beginning to think about how they scale with limited resources past the founder team.
Seminars are designed to be 60 minutes, workshops are two hours. For the WTIA Cohort program, the goal is to help founders navigate the local market ecosystem in six months vs 18-24 months.
Milestone #1—Product/Market Fit, what’s the math
Designing product market pull tests
Startup Pricing Workshop
First Revenue Hire and Sales motion
Financial modeling Workshop
Fundraising as an Enterprise Sales Process
Scaling your team
Building a Great Startup Culture
Prepping for Exit—understanding why buyers buy companies.