The advent of the internet has provided a level of access to information that is largely unprecedented in the history of the world. People are using that newfound access to incite explosive growth in many areas of the global experience, but the effect of the information age is perhaps felt strongest in the world of business. As entrepreneurs use the information and connectivity afforded by the internet to launch their own business ideas, the global economy is seeing a boom in the number of startups created each year. However, although there are many resources to be found for any new business owner, there is still much to be gained by seeking out the experience of those who have walked the path themselves. One person filling this need is Glen Wakeman, a former executive and someone who has extensive experience in the world of startups.
Through his company, Launchpad Holdings, Glen Wakeman works to empower early-stage entrepreneurs with the tools they need to achieve success. To attain these ends, he employs the use of software that asks a set of questions intended to incite reflection on the core principles of a business plan. These questions are based on Wakeman’s five-step methodology, which he developed while consulting with a wide variety of entrepreneurs. Through that work, he noticed that many of the same problems kept cropping up in unrelated business plans across entirely different industries. This led him to base his methodology on foundational elements of how a business functions, irrespective of the product or service it offers.
The five components of Glen Wakeman’s methodology are marketing, operations, talent, financials, and risk management. These five areas, when analyzed together, allow professionals to develop a cohesive strategy that will help optimize the chances of the business getting funded.
The marketing component revolves around questions designed to illuminate the benefits of the proposed product. In this phase, entrepreneurs are prompted to consider what they offer to a potential customer or why a customer might select them to fulfill their needs. This is also referred to as the “what and why” section.
The operations component is the portion of the process where business owners are asked to consider topics related to the execution of their plan. In this component, logistical considerations are addressed and ultimately the entrepreneur is prompted to figure out exactly how they will deliver on the promise of their product. Correspondingly, this is also referred to as the “how” section.
The talent component of the methodology asks entrepreneurs to honestly evaluate their abilities along with the abilities of their team members. Though they may have a solid grasp of the steps needed to execute their vision, they may lack the ability to complete those steps. This portion of the process is key in highlighting whether or not a business owner may need to partner with additional team members in order to carry out their plan.
The financial component is wholly focused on cash flow, eschewing more complicated accounting practices. Questions here prompt a business owner to consider how much cash they currently have at their disposal and how much cash their venture will cost in the beginning. By using this straightforward analysis, the practice of evaluating their company’s financials becomes more easily grasped than might otherwise be the case.
The final component of the methodology is risk management. In this portion, entrepreneurs are asked to analyze their plan for flaws. While the presence of flaws is not unusual, any flaws identified as fatal must be addressed before the plan can be considered sound enough to seek funding with the highest probability of success. In this way, entrepreneurs can hope to minimize their risk of failure.
About the Methodology’s Creator
Glen Wakeman’s approach to business is rooted in a long and varied career at businesses and corporations of all levels. A large portion of his experience stems from his twenty-year career.(https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20180423006068/en/Glen-Wakeman-Reveals-Launchpads-Benefits-Mentoring-Early-Stage).
In addition to his experience at his old job, Wakeman went on to found Launchpad Holdings which is a startup in its own right. His goal in creating the company was to share his lifetime of business experience with a new generation of entrepreneurially-minded professionals. To that same end, he also maintains a blog providing insights into trends in emerging markets, global affairs, and the world of finance.
Launchpad also has a focus on its own future growth and seeks to use the same methods it espouses in order to scale its operation up and reach an even larger community of entrepreneurs. One future goal of the company is to reach a point where it can set aside a portion of its profits to be used towards angel investing for entrepreneurs in need of financial assistance. This effort is characteristic of Wakeman’s insistence on sharing the benefits of his experience with others.
As our world becomes increasingly interconnected, worldwide innovation and commerce are reaching all-time highs. Though many entrepreneurs existing in this fast-paced environment seek to attain all of their information through static sources, the wealth of experience afforded by someone like Glen Wakeman and his methodology can be invaluable (Entrepreneur.com). If past trends are any indication, his ideas will continue to gain further adoption as more and more fledgling business owners seek his help. For a man whose focus is on helping others reach for their dreams, and for the entrepreneurs who benefit, the future is bright indeed.