Read'n'Code - Flaviu Simihaian's Blog

5 Lessons Learned at Startup Weekend

This last weekend, Charlotte Startup Weekend happened.

24 pitches, 5 chosen, 48 hours => 5 kickass products:

tagseats - lets you tag seats next to your friends for an event

talkible - connects person in need to expert over the phone

letterjacket - get high school sports scores real-time

hwyhero - find restaurant and weather coming up when driving

projectionmarket - determine stuff before it happens with crowdsourcing

won. I was fortunate to be a part of this great team.

Lessons Learned:

1. Teams of 8 don’t have to suck.

We had 4 business-oriented teammates and 4 code-oriented ones. Everyone helped out in a cohesive manner and felt as one. I’ve never seen that before.

2 days is enough to validate an idea. Not if you read hackernews, of course.

3. ninja developers can’t hurt.

We had awesome developers, but other teams did too. I think we kept developers focused on each task to be, as one admitted, “the most productive they’ve ever been.”

4. Be a nice asshole.

Sure, you want all team members to pitch in. But you need to make a call between good and bad wireframes, designs, and CSS. They’ll learn.

5. Marketing/Business fluff matters.

Researching competitors, strategies, consumer perception, and refining the pitch may sound worthless to you, but it’s the car paint of your product. Would you buy a rusty brown ferrari?

Since you’re still reading this, you clearly have enough time to go sign up at

We’ll ship a Havarti cheese wheel to the first 100 early adopters.


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