Startup Coach (Entrepreneur in Residence)
Are you passionate about entrepreneurship and supporting founders? Do you consider yourself an advocate for the startup ecosystem? Do you have a background in business and technology? Do you enjoy being challenged and continuously learning? Do you want to contribute to the success stories of tech companies in Atlantic Canada?
By helping entrepreneurs build high-value technology companies through our virtual accelerator, Propel aims to build great founders and be a catalyst to establish Atlantic Canada as a leading startup ecosystem for technology.
As a result of the success of our virtual accelerator, we have an immediate opening for a full-time contract Coaching role, with an opportunity for extension. Like our accelerator, we are a virtual team based throughout Atlantic Canada.
The Startup Coach is an advocate for the founders with whom they work. The Startup Coach draws on their unique expertise and experience in starting ventures to help founders apply "Lean Startup" principles, and other innovative methodologies, to validate their assumptions and their business model through multiple iterations of customer discovery.
We believe coaching is foundational to the founder's entrepreneurial journey. We leverage this emphasis on coaching and combine it with the proven methodologies and world-class content with which we work. The role of the Startup Coach is therefore to build trust and confidence with founders, to hold them accountable to making meaningful and measurable progress in their business during the accelerator program, and to offer guidance and connections to potential customers, investors and mentors where appropriate. The Startup Coach works with founders to identify measurable goals and hypotheses, and to turn these into actions and learning. They help to create the building blocks for a viable venture with growth potential by translating the problem the startup is solving into a product customers want to buy.
As a thought leader for innovation and entrepreneurship, the Startup Coach collaborates with other organizations in the startup ecosystem including community resources, mentor networks, and corporate enterprises.
Propel is a virtual, pan-Atlantic organization. All staff, including Startup Coaches, work remotely from their home offices based in Atlantic Canada.
In this role, you will work closely with the entire Propel team.
Key outcomes of the Startup Coach role:
- Coach startup founders, using the tools and methodologies including the Leanstack framework (www.leanstack.com), to validate problem/solution fit.
- Help founders apply "Lean Startup" principles and methodologies and customer-centric activities in order to bridge the technology they're building with the needs of potential buyers.
- Use the Propel framework and tools to continually evaluate founder progress and coach towards achievement of objectives and key results.
- Hold founders accountable for their progress, including having tough-love conversations where needed.
- Coach founders, using the tools and methodologies available, to develop a repeatable, scalable sales process and validate a path to product/market fit.
- Assist founders in applying the Growth X (www.growthx.com) Market Acceleration Program (MXP) methodology in their venture
- Identify effective growth strategies and prepare companies for growth and scale
- Hold founders accountable to their objectives and key results, and have tough-love conversations when needed.
- Ensure founders are conducting customer-focused validation plans and sprints
- Aid founders in creating a culture of disciplined experimentation
- Assist founders with creating a business case for investment
- Help companies pivot/iterate as needed to establish the path towards product/market fit
- Support founders in building a repeatable sales process
- Assist founders in sourcing relevant mentors who can help them with challenges as they arise.
- Be an advocate for Propel within the Startup ecosystem, and identify opportunities to deepen partnerships with other stakeholders, and work towards a common Atlantic-wide goal.
- Coach and educate founders about opportunities for funding early stage ventures, including the expectations of the angel and venture capital investment market.
- Be responsible for the delivery and ongoing improvement of the program, in order to keep Propel's virtual accelerator at the forefront of accelerator processes in Canada
- Work collaboratively with the other Startup Coaches to create a seamless entrepreneurial experience.
- Design, organize, and participate in fireside chats with guest speakers recognized as experts in their field.
- Identify opportunities for new content to be added to Propel's online learning platform.
- Recruit potential companies from within Atlantic Canada for admission into Propel's accelerator.
- Participate in community-based events and lead recruitment workshops to drive application demand for our three stages of programming.
- Leverage community partners and networks for applicant referrals to the program.
- Previous experience as a startup founder is highly desirable.
- Previous coaching, leadership and/or team management experience
- Bachelor's degree in Computer Science, Engineering, Science, or Business considered an asset.
- A minimum of five years of professional experience since graduating from post-secondary education.
- Fundamental understanding of IT software development processes and techniques is desirable.
- Fundamental understanding or experience and process of fundraising desirable
- Bilingualism (French and English), both written and spoken, considered an asset.
- Based in Atlantic Canada.
- Creativity/innovation - generates new approaches to problems
- Enthusiasm - exhibits passion and excitement in their work. Has a "can-do" attitude
- Coaching - holds the founders accountable, and doesn't hold back on objectively analyzing and critiquing another person's work, providing feedback in a constructive manner
- Organization and planning - focuses on key priorities using the Objectives and Key Results (OKR) framework
- Analytical - is able to structure and process qualitative or quantitative data and draw insightful conclusions from it
- Persistence - demonstrates tenacity and willingness to go the distance to get something done
- Proactivity - self-starter, acts without being told what to do. Brings new ideas to Propel and to cohort companies
- Flexibility/adaptability - adjusts quickly to changing priorities and conditions. Copes effectively with complexity and change
- Strong work ethic - possesses a willingness to work hard, sometimes long hours, to get the job done.
Propel's team thrives in a high-performance environment and adjusts quickly to keep up with trends and new technology in the startup world. If the following core values resonate with you, there is a strong possibility that you will excel in our organization:
- Radical Curiosity - constructive insight is expected and sought
- Collective Ambition - we are driven by the greater good
- We are Scrappy - relentless and unapologetic in the pursuit of value creation
In addition to our core values, here are the cultural competencies we seek from our team members:
- Honesty/integrity - does not cut corners ethically. Earns trust and maintains confidences. Does what is right, not just what is politically expedient. Speaks plainly and truthfully.
- Teamwork - reaches out to peers and cooperates with senior business leaders in Propel's network to further an overall collaborative working relationship.
- Coachable - often solicits feedback and is open to constructive criticism and ideas of others.
- Assertiveness - moves quickly and is able to take a stand without being overly abrasive.
- Accountability - lives up to verbal and written agreements, regardless of personal cost.
- Personal/professional development - embodies continuous personal development as a coach and mentor.