Phouc Do, co-founder of 1001Mentors answered a few questions for us after launching 1001mentors.com just days after Startup Weekend Seattle EDU.
Startup Weekend: Why did you attend Startup Weekend Seattle EDU?
Phuoc Do: We’ve heard about Startup Weekend and wanted to try the experience. We decided to attend when one other friend asked us to join. I took this event as an opportunity to learn and explore other areas. We learned a lot about the challenges and opportunities in this space after the weekend.
SW: How did you come up with 1001 Mentors?
PD: We wanted to be prepared before coming to the weekend. So we spent time brainstorming together. My partner and I have been working on our startup for a few months. We would like to be able to brainstorm our ideas with domain experts. My personal contacts often don’t know the area that we want to explore. We recognize the importance of mentorship in building a successful product.
SW: How does 1001 Mentors make mentorship better?
PD: We believe in order to make the most out of mentorship, we need to find the right mentor for mentee. So we designed our solution around expertise. Mentor offers the areas he/she are most knowledgable about. 1001 Mentors will then enable mentees to quickly find mentors who have the desired expertise. The system will save mentees a significant amount of time navigating through their network of personal contacts.
SW: How did Startup Weekend Seattle EDU become a launch pad for 1001 Mentors?
PD: Once we decided to work on the idea, we realized the event is a great platform for us to launch. We have incredibly energetic startup teams and many mentors at the event. We started our marketing effort to
recruit mentors on Saturday morning. The responses were overwhelmingly positive. We signed up more than one hundred mentors at the event.
After the weekend, we continued to invest our effort and launched a fully functional site. Many users have begun to reach out to mentors for help with their products, ideas, and questions. Several users told us they are using the site to form team for the upcoming Startup Weekend Seattle at the end of November. 1001 Mentors allows them to reach programmers, designers, bizdev, marketing managers. Those are the key ingredients for building successful products.
SW: Tell us a little bit about the 1001Mentors team.
PD: Our current team includes Phuoc Do and Sang Do. We are passionate about 1001 Mentors. We first want to make it useful for the Seattle startup community. In the future, we hope it will become a valuable resource for those who want to seek for mentorship in any area.