Week 6

Our sixth week into the VB18 Programme saw us continue our side-by-side lectures with the ideasinc.veni group.

This week, our lessons focused on the topic of the “Value Proposition Design” and its corresponding “Business Model Canvas”, lectured by acclaimed BWG Academy Founder SJ Lim, who himself had many rich years of experience under his belt in the areas of Strategic Business Development, and had made numerous active contributions to the entrepreneurship ecosystem and landscape in years past and present. With BWG’s immense expertise in the areas of customizing and tailoring holistic learning journeys focused on entrepreneurship development, we sat tight for an eclectic consultative-catalytic lecture, and SJ sure didn’t disappoint.

The Canvas is a useful tool to sketch the pains of the customer and the gains (pain reliever) of your product.

Briefly, the Value Proposition Design focuses on the customer as its core — understanding the customer’s pains and what our product provides in terms of gains to the customer. Keep asking better questions; dig a little bit deeper. What does our customer really aspire to do that they cannot do now?

Using this canvas made us think differently about our customers and what we could offer to them. What’s more, done well, our customers will think differently about why they hired us to fulfill their needs in the first place. For a more detailed walkthrough about the Value Proposition Design, as well as an excellent example of Tesla’s Canvas sketch, do take a read here.

The constant banter and active questions-and-answers made SJ’s lectures thoroughly engaging and immersive. Timely opportunities for us participants to practice our newly-minted skills also added to the atmosphere of learning and self-enrichment.

An in-class exercise of pitching a business model of nail salons, drones and scarecrows to respective target customer segments. Participants used what they had just learned in order to make the most effective and engaging pitch possible.
Team OMG Coating — Hansen & Vanessa — having a lively Zoom discussion with their mentor, Yuanzhe.

For the second half of the week, the teams continued to meet up with their mentors and leaders as well as each other to continue the grind. For example, Team OMG Coating — Hansen and Vanessa — met up with their mentor Yuanzhe on Zoom, and also made time to brainstorm in person at NTUitive’s co-sharing space, The Nest.

Throughout the week, other teams also made their way to The Nest — sort of like the de facto place of our VB18’s commune. It was heartening to bear witness to each other’s intense discussions from anything ranging from group dynamics, conflicting visions, financial models and considerations about the future of our projects.

Joshua & Adriel having an inter-team discussion about customer segmentation.

All-in-all, perhaps an apt word to describe the week would be “Challenges”, as many of us were forced to face our teething problems head on.

I would mentally plan to embark on multiple topics and end up scrapping it, because it felt as though I wasn’t being authentic. I realised that being as raw and real as I could was important to me. — Adriel

Whilst the research and surveying portions of our work ever continues, the need for concrete action plans moving forward weighed heavily on our minds.

After going through 6 weeks of the venture builder program and having researched extensively on entrepreneurship education, I come to realize that entrepreneurship is not just a personal aspiration, but an essential survival toolkit to navigate through my future. — Dickson

Once again, every week came with its own set of self-growth and self-actualization opportunities… and also time to relax!

A small group of us once again made it a point to find time to chill out in spite of all the lessons, mentor meet-ups and group discussions abound. This time around, we visited a fellow venture builder’s residence and had a fruitful afternoon of basketball, food and overall jollity and chatter.

Until next week, this is VB18 signing off!

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From the Venture Builders of NTUitive, the Innovation and Enterprise Company of NTU — https://www.ntuitive.sg