Six years ago, fuelled by the knowledge of the changing workforce, the experience of running community startup events and the desire to make business creation a career path that is AS respected and supported as the traditional 9-5 working path, we started Australia’s first startup accelerator program for high school students.
Since then we have gone on to run loads of successful programs, workshops and activities around business creation, ideation and creativity and dozens of strong partnerships with community organisations. It’s been a fun, sometimes frustrating but always rewarding labour of love for us as we have searched for a repeatable and scalable format for delivering the hands on experience based learning that we strive to deliver and teens thrive under.
Our mission from day one was to ‘inspire a million young minds to think differently about their approach to working life’. We envisioned facilitators in schools and community spaces all over the world running our curriculum and creating a tribe of teenage business owners designing their own future and creating economic impact in the cities and towns that they were growing up in.
We also mapped out a series of ‘moonshot’ ideas – big goals that we would love to achieve ‘one day’ but had no way of mapping out the where, when or how…yet. One of these moonshots was to find a method to allow young people to connect and form teams to create businesses, communities and movements across continents, countries and cities. To allow the momentum that comes from inspiration to fuel collaboration that crosses borders and creates powerful working relationships between young entrepreneurs and changemakers.
Last month, over 50 young people aged between 12 and 17 years old were in attendance at our Startup Express – Build a Business in 4 Days workshop series as part of Mindvalley University. (If you haven’t heard about MVU before you can read more about it here). The 4 day entrepreneurial journey allowed these teens from 20 different countries to share big ideas and tackle real world problems in order to create Humanity Plus business concepts with the help and support of some of the incredible speakers and facilitators that were also presenting at MVU stepping in as business mentors.
As we facilitated the final session and the teens were pitching their ideas ‘shark tank’ style to a panel of judges, time suddenly slowed down. The microphone passed from one teen to another and the diverse accents from cities all over the world sharing their vision for businesses that had the potential to make an incredible impact on humanity rang out crystal clear above the huge crowd that had gathered to watch. WE HAD GLIMPSED A MOONSHOT – here were those international teen collaborations we had envisioned brought together in a way we had never imagined!
Setting big goals is such an important part of staying motivated and setting a path for your business. Do you set moonshot goals? Have you ever achieved one?