Today, we celebrated five years since the first session of Pitch Practice. The first 3 sessions were called “Startup BP”, a lousy baseball analogy for startups “pitching” to others for practice. Since session number 4, we’ve met almost every week for 5 years. Along the way, we’ve helped startups like TenRocket, Qoins, VINWiki, and others hone their message, learn their audience, and have a slightly better chance at winning. That’s what it’s all about: helping entrepreneurs, one by one, have a slightly better chance at success, because 90+% of all startups fail.
A huge part of how we’ve done things at every session of Pitch Practice is based on Simon Sinek’s TED Talk, “Start with Why”. Our why, which was not clear from the beginning, is to help entrepreneurs articulate their message better. Why do we do that? Because, all other things being equal, the entrepreneur who can articulate their value better will win every time.
I needed help when I created Pitch Practice, and that’s why I created it. To get help. Now we do it to help other entrepreneurs who need help. We are winning by helping others win.
The Fruits of Labor
It’s funny how really limited our view of future possibilities is. I started Pitch Practice to get help. The results of five years of leading the meetup have included a podcast, a book, hundreds of blog posts, meeting thousands of people, and personal branding value that I could never have come up with in my wildest dreams. And those are just the benefits to me.
We’ve heard more than 2,700 pitches. Many of those are pitches from people who are returning a 2nd, 3rd, or 4th time to practice. But I have dug through the archives and I estimate that more than 1,000 entrepreneurs have pitched. Every one of those entrepreneurs got help, in one form or another, from people they didn’t know (aka ‘objective feedback’), and took at least one turn standing in front of other people and saying the words that should articulate their value.
To anyone and everyone who has ever attended, participated in, pitched, read a blog post summary, listened to the podcast, read the book, or otherwise supported this meetup, thank you. Pitch Practice would not exist without you and without the fantastic team at Atlanta Tech Village.
My message to you, aside from a huge thanks, is to go out and create something new that can help you win by helping other people win. Use your gift. Give away your gift. There are tremendous benefits to your attitude and your health from giving, and not just giving money. Giving away your time and talents is of far greater value. Anyone can make and give money, but we all have exactly the same amount of time to give. And, your talents are unique to you and only you. You and you only can give them away. For you to give them away for the sole purpose of helping others is truly the embodiment of the mantra “Pay it forward.” You are winning by helping other people win using your gifts.
Thank you. Now go create something new to help someone else.