Winning Is Good and Just the Start

This post was written by Village Advisor, Charlie Paparelli.

“We won the startup competition!” exclaimed the entrepreneur.

“Out of one hundred other startups, we were chosen by the judges to be #1,” he went on.

There is no denying this is a great accomplishment. Winning a startup competition requires being the best at:

  1. Identifying a real market problem
  2. Applying a great solution
  3. Describing the financial opportunity

And all of this must be presented in a cohesive and compelling five- to ten-minute presentation. In this short time, the winner must capture the judges’ interests and lead them to the conclusion, “This is going to be big!”

It is also the coming out of the entrepreneur.

The entrepreneur is judged on:

  • Relevant market experience
  • Communication skills
  • Leadership capability

These are all necessary for the entrepreneur to successfully lead this new business.

Winning a startup competition does check a lot of the right boxes of potential success. But even more important, the winner gains valuable exposure to the financial community and potential employees, thus expanding the entrepreneur’s relevant network. This is the real value.

All good, but the startup is still not a business. And this is the goal, to become a sustainable business.

The ultimate judge of this startup competition winner is the customer. The entrepreneur continues to win when the customer buys. That’s it. It is all that counts.

Startup winners are decided in the marketplace.

The day in and day out competition that never ends.

A startup competition is an event. Building a great business is a continuous, long-term process of making more and more people’s lives better and having them pay you because you do it. 

This is winning.

Be a winner.