Live From #swbtr: An Interview with Startup Coach Stafford Kendall


At Startup Weekend, the entire building process, from start to finish, is a hands-on, interactive experience, bringing people face to face with their problem-solving abilities. There is no shortage of creativity, but to go from a creative idea to a successful product, you need know-how. To help them with that process,  a group of well-versed and well-tested startup coaches work with the participants, providing advice and insights into what it takes to build a successful startup at Startup Weekend.

In an interview with startup coach, Stafford Kendall, a local Baton Rouge entrepreneur and co-owner of Covalent Logic, she offers tips and insights on startups, teams, and the importance of seizing the day:

How did you get involved with Startup Weekend?

Stafford is not new to the startup coaching arena, before getting involved with Startup Weekend in Baton Rouge, she participated in the StartUpBus as a coach, and later joined other Startup buses, even doing a European tour for startups.

She answered, “You are able to build businesses over a few days. It’s an amazing experience. It teaches you all the fundamentals in a quick and dirty way. I don’t like to relax, I don’t want want to just sit on the beach. I need to accomplish things. Startup weekend is a way to accomplish things.”

What advice would you give a participant of Startup Weekend?

Do not try to make the best decision, try to make all of the decisions because the people who win have made it all the way through the process. Your team will argue, but it is about making it to the end. Make the decision, commit and move on. Agree to put a pin in it and discuss it in the future.

What value does Startup Weekend offer its participants?

You learn how quickly you can do things that you typically spend a lot of time on. The beautiful thing is, I have created names in 12 minutes and logos in 20 minutes. Typically, you spend so much time on those things in real business that you don’t even realize that that’s not the most important part. It teaches you to seize the day. Also, there’s no time for anybody to bullshit anyone else, you see someone under stress, you see how someone actually works, not how they pretend to act, but deep in their soul how they really are. It is really revealing.

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