The following is a submission from Beyond Boundaries participant Robyn Simpson of Catapult Design Studios.
Beyond Boundaries has been a great education opportunity for me, helping to round out my knowledge as a CEO and founder, in particular aimed at the strengths and challenges of a woman founder. The course has helped to distill my vision for the company, to get the laser focus needed for success. In support of this, the curriculum is very relevant to all aspects of starting up and running my company, and mentors are all knowledgeable, professional and engaging.
This course has forced me to face the value of the business to investors. Being the primary investor in the company, this helped me to discard activities that are not directly adding to the business and focus on those that would bring Catapult to revenue to fund future growth and success. The weekly content helped bring timelines into focus, highlighting days that did not meaningfully bring the company towards its goals.
The mentorship and networking have been valuable and insightful – both in tangible strategic introductions and also meeting and creating relationships with other like-minded women for the intangible support and sharing. I found the breakout rooms helpful in introducing myself over and over, giving me the practise of presenting myself. I also found it useful discussing various topics in the breakout rooms and hearing feedback and reflections from others that have different industry and life experiences.
The sales course was also vital to our current successes – in learning to lean into the customer’s problem to fully understand and learn it, before proposing our solutions. I’ve found that it’s has built more solid relationships and partnerships with our potential customers that will serve Catapult, current customers and future customers in evolving our product to better serve the market.
Beyond Boundaries has also helped me to pay attention to parts of the business that I had been neglecting due to lack of knowledge or understanding, for example moving past Excel into an accounting system, and introducing me to valuable tools like HubSpot. It’s so easy to put aside the harder or unknown activities and this course helped me in holding myself accountable for these areas.
Most of all, the encouragement is uplifting. I love the quote from one of our mentors – “Do what you can with what you have.”
Robyn Simpson, Founder & CEO
Catapult Design Studios