The versatile nature of the Startup Weekend

11/04/2019 | By Denislav Ivanov

This post originally appeared on

Startup Weekend Sheffield is back in November! The 15th edition!!! Of the event in Sheffield will take place in the newest incubator in Sheffield – Kollider, on the 22 to 24 November and our goal is simple – we want to create the best environment for a weekend for the attendants to create the best startups they can.

The Startup Weekend celebrates entrepreneurship and thus is viewed by the public as an event solely focused on targeting people that want to be founders, just like Hackathons are mostly targeting computer programmers and Sales Competitions - business students and Salespeople.

This is profoundly wrong. What’s special about the Startup Weekend is its versatility and how it can be an experience that brings benefits to wide range of sectors and people of many professional occupations. Here is how the Startup Weekend can be of value for you besides the simple ‘create a business in 55 hours’:

  1. Future founders – the group that can probably benefit the most from a Startup Weekend. People that want to start their own businesses can often fall in the trap of the infinite amount of resources out there and get confused – what should they do exactly? The structure of the startup weekend has been proven to be a natural way of developing your business from scratch – pitch, create a prototype, validate, grow. And all of that – in 55 hours!
  2. Founders – many people that have started their own business take that as the last stop, as if learning is not valuable after that. We believe that even people that have gone through the different stages of building their startups can benefit enormously by going through the process again, may be finding mistakes that they did and having the chance to correct them. It is also an opportunity to face similar challenges that you have with your own business and have the opportunity to seek opinions from different people at the event – thus finding a solution faster and cheaper. Learning should never stop.
  3. Employees – so what you have an established career as an engineer? A different environment could be a great way to find a new motivation and try to solve a problem you don’t have the opportunity to solve in your regular job. Whether you work in marketing, HR, software development or as a bartender, sales assistant or secretary, the Startup Weekend is a great way to escape the daily routine of your job and dive deep into the fascinating world startup.
  4. Academics – buried in 1000-page long books, academics can forget to pay attention to the changing landscape of business around them and the Startup Weekend gives them the opportunity to learn new and practical solutions which they can implement in their teaching session after. It is also a good way to stimulate your students – they are more likely to spend a weekend building a business if their teacher is willing to do the same!
  5. – no matter what you want to do in life, learning how to build a business is a valuable skill. The intensity of the weekend and the pace you have to work with within 55 hours is unknown to laid-back students who most of the time leave everything for the last week. Well here you don’t have one week – you have two days, so the need for action can empower everyone to work harder and I believe this can be of huge benefit for students.

No matter of one’s background, we believe that the Startup Weekend’s versatility can prove beneficial to everyone. Sheffield’s Startup Ecosystem is not limited to the startups and incubators and should be expanded to universities, their enterprise entities, large enterprises across the city and public organizations supporting the new businesses, giving a chance to more people and teams to benefit from one another. And the Startup Weekend can be the cornerstone of this cooperative culture!