The Program

TechStars Blog

24th April 2014

A Techstars Associate’s Journey

On August 1st, I left the hotel in Dallas for Austin around 10:00am and my stomach was in knots. I had applied to a job posting to be a Techstars Associate, and the position started just six days later. When I arrived, my interview consisted of questions about my passions, understanding of Techstars, the role, and how I could contribute to the teams. At the end of the interview they offered me the role and I was beyond ecstatic.

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Left to right: Fosbury Co-Founder Martijn De Kuijper and myself

However, to join Techstars, I had to quit my high paying consulting job with one day’s notice and uproot my life to move to Austin over the weekend. It is no doubt the best decision I’ve ever made. During the program, I spent over 90% of my time with the teams doing whatever I could to help them grow. With no pre-set role, my experience evolved organically as I helped each team where it was needed. I conducted market research, helped write pitches, created go-to-market strategies, and spent three months working tirelessly alongside people who became my best friends.

In addition to my role helping the teams, I was privileged to gain the benefits of being part of the Techstars network. Founders, CEOs and VCs would give talks about the personal and professional struggles of running a company. Happy hours and FounderCon introduced me to the fastest growing startups from other Techstars cities around the country, and I felt equipped with the connections to reach almost any individual I needed.

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Left to right: Lucas Tieleman (Fosbury), myself, Ori Steele (ProtoExchange)

Meanwhile, I had to think of what would come after the program. I began interviewing around Austin, but was thrilled when my favorite team in the program, Fosbury, asked me to join them. Besides being interested in their product and the mobile marketing space, I developed a deep admiration for the founders’ passion, intellect, and ambition. I worked with Lucas, Willem, and Martijn day in and day out, learning how to run a business and not to take myself too seriously.

I am happier than I’ve ever been and now run marketing and operations out of Fosbury’s US office with a team that has grown to six.

None of this would have been possible without the Associate role at Techstars, and I cannot recommend highly enough getting involved however possible.

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There’s more than one way to get into a Techstars program, and you don’t need to have a startup to apply. We’re looking for developers and designers (Hackstars) and business-focused Associates to join us for upcoming programs:

  • Techstars in Austin (runs Jun 9th – Sep 5th)
  • Techstars in Los Angeles (runs Jun 30th – Oct 14th)
  • Techstars in Boulder (runs Jul 15th – Nov 10th)
  • Techstars in Seattle (runs Aug 11th – Nov 14th)

Learn more and apply to be a Hackstar here and an Associate here.