#BacktoSchool: Now is the time to kickstart your business idea

#BacktoSchool: Now is the time to kickstart your business idea

Entrepreneur’s Toolkit Workshops Fall Intensive Program is a hands-on, 15-week entrepreneurship program designed for early-stage entrepreneurs who are committed to exploring the potential of the business ideas they are working on. Applications are now open for the program, which begins this September. Guest blogger and Entrepreneur’s Toolkit Workshops participant Eugene Chun describes his experience and how the Workshops helped him develop his business.

When I started out as a developer and new entrepreneur, I thought that as long as there was a good idea in play it would be easy to get a business off the ground. Apparently this isn’t the case.

Some time ago, I founded teachassist, a tool designed by and for teachers to assist them in their assessment of students. It’s been years now and I’ve since learned that there is a lot of work involved in attempting to turn an idea into a full-fledged, self-sustaining business—and there’s a lot of “busy”-ness involved as well. For years I’ve been floating around aimlessly, trying this and that, listening to various people’s opinions and just waiting for the right time to get things moving, hoping that something would present itself.

‪Over the years, teachassist continued to evolve and received more and more interest, but it still wasn’t really getting anywhere. I needed a kick-start of some sort. I needed to refocus.‬

Attending MaRS’ Entrepreneur’s Toolkit Workshops really helped me to gain a new perspective on things. The workshops helped me to lift off the blanket that was hiding the many aspects of beginning a startup that had never been presented to me in a way that I could understand. The most important part of this experience was meeting with fellow entrepreneurs and being able to bounce ideas off of one another.

Sure, I had previously spoken with educators about teachassist and how it could help them, but the first set of workshops really helped me to realize the importance of generating a value proposition that would clearly and succinctly describe what it is that teachassist does. Creating a value proposition really helped me to focus on the direction I needed to take to move the company forward. The process also helped me to clearly outline some of the boundaries and margins that define what teachassist does and what it should be doing—and it also helped me to identify what it shouldn’t be doing.

The process in itself has been quite rewarding. Being able to work with like-minded people in diverse areas really encouraged me to continue to focus on what teachassist is doing and how it can make a change in this world.

As a whole, the Entrepreneur’s Toolkit Workshops really unified all of the various aspects of what is required to successfully launch a product and, even more so, made me aware of what to look out for. It’s been quite a kick-start and has rejuvenated me to pave the path ahead.

My next steps are to keep pressing on, steady and directed, by promoting and generating more interest in teachassist’s offerings and by continuing to evolve the product to be in line with the ever-evolving connected world that we live in.

If you are interested in developing your business idea and taking your startup to the next level, submit your application for the Fall Intensive Program by September 2.