At The CoWrks Foundry, we back exceptional teams who are building market transforming companies.
FORMIDABLE FOUNDING TEAMS
Above all, we look for strong teams – formed of not more than three capable, driven and self-aware individuals. What will truly set your team apart from the competition is clarity of purpose and a singular vision. We want dreamers, with a touch of realism. We place a huge emphasis on discovering the mettle of our founders. We don’t want people who settle, who take the obvious route.
We want individuals who can exhibit the following traits:
We are looking for teams that are humble. We believe that people are more than just workhorses. We see them for the unique combination of talents and drive that they inherently possess. We look at them as carriers of great ideas and immense potential. And this informs the way we treat them. This is a quality that we are very particular about because this rare trait also affects the way an entrepreneur will build their business. A humble founder can comfortably step back, and open their eyes to fresh perspectives and opinions from subordinates, investors and customers. They are driven by impact, not by their ego. While wit is great, we are averse to cocky behavior. Teams that operate with underlying compassion and kindness inevitably, see greater longevity and their businesses tell a better, stronger story.
Teams that are brave and persistent in their pursuit of company-building are an ideal fit. We want to see a passion that is unquenchable. We’re seeking founders that are determined, who ask the right questions, and untiringly dig deep for answers to problems. We want confident entrepreneurs who will stop at nothing to get the results they need. They aren’t afraid to break their stereotypes, notions, ideas and the status quo, because they have the resilience to build it up far stronger than it was before.
We’re looking for founders with a wild imagination. Intelligence is great, but without imagination, ideation and problem solving may be too linear for our liking. In a changing, unpredictable world, coming up with quick yet, brilliant ideas is a uncommon skill. Working with huge doses of imagination allows a founder to keep an open mind, leading to greater flexibility and adaptability, which is a great recipe for success. The understanding that there are multiple different ways to approach and solve for a problem, can open up a world of infinite, unexplored possibilities.
We want to work with resourceful teams, who can accomplish great things with very little. Founders who can exhibit frugality are impressive candidates for our program. These are the people whose first instinct is to fix what is broken, rather than throw it out. They are also more likely to have a better sense of value as they assess possible scenarios and outcomes. A sense of thriftiness also forces discipline and focus and encourages creative problem solving with economical use of resources.
In order to get a solid business off the ground, we need founders who are teachable. We can’t work effectively with know-it-alls. We need founders with a sense of self-awareness, who play to their strengths and will ask for the support they need to overcome their shortcomings. We provide mentorship unlike any other accelerator program in the market and to get the most out of it, entrepreneurs will need to willingly dedicate significant amounts of time and effort toward acquiring the expertise that they need to drive a company. Founders that take feedback well and adapt quickly will benefit the most.
If you’ve read our manifesto, you’ll know we aren’t looking for rule-followers. We don’t want people who play by the book or color inside the lines. We want people who are fearless, who can overstep the boundaries, push their limits, and a mischievous sense of rebellion. This is not to be confused with arrogance. We want their values and integrity to be unquestionable.
IDEA — INNOVATIVE AND DISRUPTIVE
We are looking for novel ideas in a growing or disruptive sector that are born from intensive research and insight. We will work with teams that can demonstrate a deep understanding of their industry. Founding teams must have clearly identified a pressing need, devised an innovative solution, with little or no substitutes. We’re looking for products that have already been developed, with the potential for rapid scalability — the product must be extendable into a distinct brand or company. We’d also like to see quantifiable market results and responses to the product.
In order to really take your product to the next level, you will need to possess the skills required to grow your team with real, valuable hires. This is a difficult skill to master, but entirely worth it, since the cost of a poor hires can negatively impact morale and time spent, leading to suboptimal outcomes.
PRODUCT- MARKET FIT
An integral aspect that we focus on is product-market fit. What is vital to a product’s success is its ability to address the pain point of customers. The product should offer customers a compelling solution, turning them into advocates. What impresses us more than inspiration is measurable market insight. Founders must exhibit a deep understanding of the market and articulate their market research, experiments, iterations and findings in their quest to develop a solid product.
We’re looking for products that have already been developed, with the potential for rapid scalability — the product must be extendable into a distinct brand or company. Startups should have dedicated a significant amount of time and research to identifying a large, viable and growing market and validate the need and prospects for their product in said market. Having comprehensive market knowledge will inform decisions on pricing, pacing sales, evaluating scalability, and so much more. Founders who have created a simple product with a focused, singular value proposition will be able to draw target customers who are willing to pay a premium. When you are able to create the perfect product-market fit, it resonates with customers who receive value, spread the word, and cause your usage to grow organically.