Perfecting pitch: Final push at the R9 Accelerator

Two weeks left! Less now, actually. And then we stand up in front of an audience of 200+ and pitch our blood sweat and tears from the past three months.

Actually, my team mate Tui will be pitching, and I will be sitting in the audience blissfully glad that it isn’t me on stage, hoping that the chief execs in the ‘dragon's den’ panel don’t ask too many impossible questions. (I’m totally prepared to yell out answers from the cheap seats if I have to.)

As you can imagine, the pace here has been picking up. This week alone my team has presented to ministers, chief executives, and deputy commissioners. We have prepared materials for proposals, presentations, trade shows, prototyping, selling to customers, and engaging government and industry bodies. I even started planning a pilot. It’s been mad!

Funnily enough, I’m not that stressed. Busy but not stressed. I found the midpoint of the programme the hardest, when I was feeling immense pressure for not having produced anything tangible from all of our research and interviews.  

Since then: Progress! Hooray! Let me tell you about it.

We have an idea! A solution concept that will help builders save time, engage their teams, increase their peace of mind and connect them with the info they need to run their businesses.  

It will bring together private and public sector needs and delivers value to both.

I would tell you more, but then I would have to kill you.

Let's just say that I’m excited. And while we still have work to do around how the concept will translate into real life, the potential for something really cool is there.  

This is what we will present on demo day - a solution concept, market fit, with a plan and an ask for the next stages.

Teams have progressed at different rates. We have a concept but don’t yet have a product. Some teams have more than us, and some have less. And some teams have fallen off along the way.  

I’m having a lot of fun, and have laughed a lot more recently than I have in ages. The people on this journey with me are pretty amazing, and have managed to achieve some great things.

I really enjoy having so much autonomy over this project. I also appreciate the different experiences and knowledge from my teammates clashing and meshing with my own.

I’ve discovered that midday massages are a great way to get a new perspective. And that brainstorming with your old colleagues once and awhile is a useful way to ground yourself and boost your productivity.

That’s it for now. The next time you hear from me I will be on the other side, and we will have passed through the looking glass into the great beyond. Wish us luck!

But know that whatever happens, it’s been worth it. Mad, exhausting, exhilarating and worth it.