Graham Bell, co-founder of Next Aero, Generator alum, 2018 cohort. Pitching to a packed room at Demo Day.

Please don’t apply to Monash’s Generator accelerator program

Because I will gently, supportively push you to accelerate

I’m a startup accelerator junkie. I’m currently mentoring founders as Entrepreneur-in-Residence for the Remarkable program, and later this year I’ll play a similar role for the tech startup accelerator at Monash University, The Generator. In a recent interview, I talk about why I love startup accelerator programs and how that has influenced my startup investment work.

But if you apply for a place in The Generator, get ready. Because if you are accepted, I’ll work with you to explore the many ways we might accelerate the progress of your startup, and of you as a founder. You might need to learn some new skills. You might need to challenge some of the assumptions you’ve been basing your startup on. You might need to stop dreaming and start doing.

Which really is a shame because the other benefits of being in Monash University’s accelerator program run by The Generator are rather awesome.

The Generator’s new coworking space has a neon sign that says “The Generator”, and also a green wall ;-)

Some other accelerators might offer you sweet cash money but take a piece of your startup in return. Or they might want to take part of that money back to cover the expenses of the program. But at The Generator, the $10,000 per team is for you to use to accelerate the progress of your startup, no strings attached.

Some other accelerator programs are long — six months or more — and force you into mandatory talks, lectures, fireside chats and mentor speed dates that you just don’t need. At The Generator, we’ve pared our program back to just the essentials — an eight-week program including just what you need to truly accelerate your progress. A masterclass per week, pitch practice and a weekly one-on-one with me. I mean, you can also come to the accelerator dinners where we bring in the industry’s best from our alumni and the broader startup community to share the valuable lessons they’ve learned. But only if you want to.

Some accelerators might offer you coworking space to work from; a place to focus on your startup, away from distractions and surrounded by other startup entrepreneurs you can learn from, a place to bring visitors, a place to make your startup’s home, and say, “here is our startup, it is a thing!”. But some of those accelerators will want to charge you for that space. The Generator’s gorgeous, architecturally-designed, fully-equipped startup space is part of the deal, and it’s free for you to call home.

The co-working space at The Generator has been completed during the pandemic lockdown, so you’ll be the first to work in it!

I mean, it’s not like The Accelerator doesn’t work. Notable alumni include Ally Assist, NextAero, Mindset Health, Tixel, Merry People and Additive Assurance. So the team’s been doing something right.

And we certainly have some talented startup industry professionals lending their time to help you. From an experienced program team, the entrepreneurs-in-residence, and the big network of mentors we can draw upon for specialist experience and advice. Maybe you’ll meet your future investors here, or maybe it’ll be the cofounder you’ve always hoped for, or that critical first team member you’ll need to hire. After all, accelerators attract talent like bees to a flower bed.

All you need to be successful in applying to The Generator’s Accelerator Program is to be one of the best teams to apply, so really, by not applying, you’ll be doing other startups a favour.

Or, you could look at it this way — there’s no risk in applying! You don’t have to accept if you’re offered a place.

Really, I get it. Maybe you’d rather amble along at your own pace, you often meet experienced tech startup professionals at your kitchen table, you have no need of $10,000, and you’d rather not be challenged by me to give your best, once a week, for eight weeks. I totally get it.

(We look forward to seeing your application! Get it in before Sunday August 2nd.)

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