The Founder Perspective of the JSF Experience

Jun 19, 2020

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In early June, Jumpstart Foundry welcomed 16 portfolio companies into their 2020 cohort. The founders of the 16 portfolio companies participated in two days of onboarding with Jumpstart and one-on-one meetings with mentors.

On Thursday, June 16th, Gabe Laurence, Jumpstart’s Investment Analyst, hosted a webinar with three of Jumpstart’s newest founders from the 2020 cohort. The founders had the opportunity to share information about their companies and then candidly discussed their experience of onboarding as a new Jumpstart company. The founders that joined Gabe included Farhan Chaudry, Co-Founder of HelloPatients, Alex Harb, Founder and CEO of Lena, and Andrew Suggs, CEO of LiveChair.

 

Topics covered in the Webinar:

  • Each Founder’s background and story

  • Each startup’s story and future plans

  • Jumpstart application process

  • Virtual onboarding from a Founder’s perspective

  • Q&A between the Founders  

Highlights from the Webinar

The JSF Application Process

When discussing the JSF application experience, all three panelists drew attention to the smoothness of the process. Part of the application includes a video recording of the team answering interview questions. All three founders in the Webinar thoroughly appreciated the ability to pre-record their answers in this process.

“We could really put our best foot forward and really develop what we wanted to say,” noted Alex Harb, CEO of Lena.

Farhan Chaudry, Co-Founder of HelloPatients, explained how the application process also helped HelloPatients internally, “The questions were really relevant, it made us question each other, and answered some of the unanswered questions that we did not think about before.”

The JSF Onboarding Experience

For these three founders, the onboarding experience seemed to go as well as the application process.

“I’ve been flabbergasted,” said Andrew Suggs, CEO of LiveChair, “What’s displayed on the [JSF] website has manifested into tangible results.”

Alex, Farhan, and Andrew all discussed a productive session they had with Eller Mallchok, Managing Director of Jumpstart Foundry, that helped the founders narrow-in on their target customers. Additionally, the founders discussed their biggest takeaways from several of their one-on-one meetings with Jumpstart’s mentors. Andrew talked about the conversation he had with Marcus Whitney, CEO and Founder of Health:Further, and Farhan honed in on how the one-on-ones helped HelloPatients explain their product efficiently in a 90-120 second pitch. “By the last call, we really had it figured out,” Farhan reflected.

Peer-to Peer Advice and Guidance

At the end of the webinar, Gabe gave the founders the opportunity to ask each other questions, illustrating the type of collaboration that Jumpstart encourages between its portfolio companies.

At this point, Alex and Andrew noted that they actually had a call scheduled for the following day to bounce industry-specific ideas off of each other. Again, reflecting the manifestation of tangible results. During the open questions, Andrew asked the other two founders how they approached the development of their revenue model; Alex asked the others to share one or two critical traits that they felt were universal when bringing on a new team member; and Farhan asked for insight into conflict resolution when two co-founders have disagreeing ideas. All three founders were eager to share their thoughts and provide help to their fellow cohort members.

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