Lena Gaede

Boost innovative thinking in your company: how your brain comes up with new ideas – and how you can train it!

What does every business need to be successful? Great ideas! And where do ideas come from? Your brain! Because your mind is capable of something unique: being creative. This ability is the root and the driving force of every startup or agile business. Today the innovative strength of companies is a major success factor – and therefore their employees or rather their creative brains are the most valuable assets. To improve this creative power let us go to the birthplace of innovation: how does the brain come up with new ideas and how can you train it to do so?

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Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Insider tips for accelerators, incubators & VCs – 7 questions to know if a startup invest will be successful

There you are, listening to a startup pitch, considering to give them money. A lot of money. The main question in your head: will this startup be successful? Before you invest, you want to be as sure as possible this company will thrive. Therefore, you should spot those crucial points that will tell you about the startup’s prospects of success. But how to get to the key facts? We share some effective questions for accelerators, incubators and VCs to screen a startup – and for startups to prepare themselves for them. Let the interviews begin!

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Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Motivation hacks for business: 5 bullet-proof tips to boost your motivation!

Yes we can! Just do it! When you are sitting at your desk without traction, this is what Barack Obama and Shia LaBeouf would probably tell you. To boost your motivation, you can either play their videos in an infinite loop in your office – or become your own motivation master! Because tackling big challenges and pushing through laborious projects can be easy if you know the right motivation hacks. Read on for 5 bullet-proof motivation tips every entrepreneur should know!

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Filiz Sarah Gärtner

7 tips for the perfect startup pitch – put the icing on the cake of your pitch and convince every investor!

The fact that you are reading this shows it: you know the importance of a good pitch! In the world of digital startups, it can easily be the difference between millions of dollars and not a single one. But you might also know: there are as many tips on perfect startup pitches as people who once did one. We want to help you find out the right ingredients for your pitch to convince every investor. Read on for the most crucial tips for your cake base plus those small but very important things that put the icing on the cake of your pitch!

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Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Your working environment can boost productivity and creativity! Lessons from Google and Facebook

First they revolutionized the way we work, now they change the spaces we work in. Leading tech companies like Google, Facebook or Amazon completely transform our work life at the Their working environments are urban legends: something between a theme park and incubator for digital pioneers. Either way it sounds like a lot of fun! Which is great, as the happiness of employees is proven to increase productivity by 31% and creativity by a factor of three. Enough reasons to further investigate the perfect office surrounding. What does the perfect working environment look like?

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SUN

The Network of Success – 7 Tips to forge a strong business network for your startup

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A strong and dynamic network is the secret of many successful companies. Whether it is an enterprise, a mid-sized company or a startup, an extensive network assists with recruiting, client acquisition and – in the best case – funding.

One is not born as a networker; instead it is more some sort of an inner attitude, which enables a person to forge numerous new contacts. If you lack the attitude, you don’t have to be worried, like most other business-skills, you just need the right strategy and insides. Take the following tips by heart and harvest the advantages of an efficient business network:

1. Don’t let extraverts intimidate you
Extraverts go to an event and comeback with a stack of business cards and 3 coffee chats scheduled for next week. Don’t let them intimidate you. It is okay you only made one contact.

2. Showing your face matters
When you go to events and could not speak with anyone, you may feel like going to events are time consuming, torturous, and useless. But remember, showing your face matters. Just give yourself these simple goals and feel good about it.

3. Choose your game
There are gazillions of startup related events happening everyday all over Europe. You can’t attend them all – impossible. Only choose the ones you are really interested in. If you are a business person, don’t auto-mute technical events. For example, if you are interested in the Analytics space, you might want to attend Data Science meetup. Yes, the majority of attendees will be developers. Yes, you will be likely to see a slide with lines of code that you can’t understand; but there is much more you can gain. Even simply knowing those technology exist gives you a better understanding of the market. If someone asks you “why are you here?” just tell them “I am interested in this subject and simply want to educate myself”. As easy as pie! More…

Filiz Sarah Gärtner

Design thinking or human-centered design? Both! How to combine the benefits of the two approaches

Are you on team design thinking or team human-centered design? Actually you don’t need to choose! Even though both approaches are treated as two different methods of working, they have a lot in common and can be reconciled. And both have their benefits for your innovation process! So why not combine them and get the best of two worlds for your work? Have a look at the two approaches – where they differ and where they go hand in hand.

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But first things first! Let’s do a short recap of what design thinking and human-centered design is all about. The basic idea of design thinking is that interdisciplinary teams can create outstanding innovations. It is a solution-focused method used to solve complex problems by profiting from different expert perspectives. The focus is less on the detailed elaboration of ideas, but rather on the extensive experimentation and drawing up of big ideas. For the human-centered design approach the ultimate goal is to drive a customer focus deep within a corporation. This includes a culture open for sharing knowledge and collaboration between all departments within and outside the company. As a result, you get a product that resonates with the user and exceeds his needs.

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Filiz Sarah Gärtner

How can startups and corporates successfully collaborate? Best practices with business incubators, accelerators and partnerships

Many reasons why startups and corporates seek collaboration are clear: startups benefit from funding, expertise as well as from a business and sales network, while large corporates profit from startups’ innovative power, operational speed and creativity.  A large percentage of corporates stated that they require startups to enable innovation for their business. In an equal collaboration, the vital effect of startups for the innovation process of big companies meets the need of startups for a powerful patron. But when new and established businesses come together, they most likely face challenges like a culture clash or the struggle of control and independence. However, equal and successful collaboration is possible! Find out how with the best practices in incubations, accelerations and partnerships.

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