The article What history teaches us about startup incubators by Om Malik may be very old, but it’s well worth reading if you or one of your cohorts is considering applying for entrance into an incubator or accelerator. At the top of the first page it references the original article by Andrew Clay Shafer which is well worth reading as well.
But for those of you following this blog because of your interest in mentoring the two mentions mentoring gets are worthwhile nuggets in the mine of incubator articles.
The paid professionals are now called mentors. This is certainly true and for the entrepreneur there’s the risk that these paid mentors are biased, a subject I wrote about earlier. The bigger issue is what happens when the bird leaves the nest? The need for mentoring will be as strong or stronger than when inside the incubator. But the access to mentors stops.
Watch this space for a solution to this problem!
The other nugget relates to the value of mentoring:
Mentoring and the hands-on approach is what is going to help the companies which are being incubated get to market faster,” says (Jeff) Levy.
These are two of the major benefits of an incubator. Speed is of the essence in startups. But there are downsides to being in an incubator as well. Be sure to read both articles if you are deciding whether or not to apply for entrance into an incubator. And don’t forget to check the comments on these blog posts. Often more informative than the original articles! And I’ll be posting soon about how startup formalize their decision making process.