Equity free funding to any founder in the world willing to test a hypothesis and share the results publicly

This sprint is inspired by the Google Design Sprint, Adobe KickBox and of course leanstartup. The steps below are intentionally thorough since we are literally giving away $500 to ANYONE who completes them. If you will be at SXSW comment below and we will invite you to our $10,000 giveaway event:)

For the last 3 years we have given founders, who are otherwise being ignored by the traditional funding apparatus, access to money and mentoring.

We are scaling that program as we continue to learn. If you complete the steps below, you can simply take up to $500 from the fund without asking. In addition to the automatic, equity free funding, you get instant access to world class mentoring and you qualify for an additional $10,000 for 1% of your startup.

The only catch is that you need to use the money on your product and you need to attach a metric to the use of funds. You cannot just use it for free pizza:)

If you are willing to start with a problem hypothesis, and share it publicly, keep reading.

Ask me why leanstartup is a roller coaster!

Running experiments and sharing them with the world is not as easy as it sounds for most startups. And the money is not huge. But we are not taking any equity. So if we give you $5,000 to run an experiment in a week, that’s like $250,00 for the year— not nothing:)

“Entrepreneurs are willing to work 80 hours a week to avoid working 40 hours a week.”

Lori Greiner

And the great poet Bruce Springsteen once said,

“The door is open but the ride ain’t free.” -The boss

The door is open but the ride ain’t free. Bruce Springsteen said it first, but it comes to life with our program. You get the resources if are willing to solve problems and test hypotheses. Sounds easier than our metrics suggest it is.

Complete the following steps.

  • Active work time = 2–3 days (mostly talking to customers and setting up the experiment). Step 3 can be ATTEMPTED within 5 minutes of step 1, therefore you must at least add SOMETHING to trello the same 24 hour period of accepting the challenge. Step 3 4 5 and 6 can also be done in under an hour and we have endless mentors standing by to help you. Steps 7 8 and 9 take a bit of work.
  • Passive work time/cycle time, no more than 2 weeks (you have 30 days from your tweet to post the blog and get paid).
  • Here’s an example of someone who did it right! This is how we know YOU can do it! Way to go @adrianlaurenzi (and way to make hiking more accessible!)
  1. Accept the challenge with a public tweet! (we are measuring EVERYTHING, yes we want the growth hack, but we also want to see the delta between who signs up for “free money” vs who completes the tasks below)
  2. Do a segmentation session with our special mentor. (click GET, and upvote if appropriate — it is an augmented intelligence mentor after all:) The session itself will take 3 minutes and you do not have to sign in to anything.
  3. Add a card with your hypothesis to column 1 of our trello board of hypotheses ask Steven Sherman Jesse Roy-Cote Adam McGarity Boris Grinkot or Boone Bergsma or anyone you see in column 4, for help. This step requires 5 minutes of “figuring it out”, if you are not familiar with trello. So does life, especially startup life. When we have 100 or more hypotheses to manage per week, we may consider building something custom that has a better UI for this purpose. Until then… it’s Trello. (or as of 12/7 you can fill this out instead of steps 3,4,5) Watch this 5 minute video before you post! We will test you to see if you watched it before you get funded. You need to click this link to join the board!!!! (thanks Lyndon Johnson for showing us how literal our instructions need to be for this to scale, seriously)
  4. In the TITLE of the card put “MY NAME IS, MY TWITTER IS AND I HEARD that the door is open but the ride ain’t free”.
  5. In the DESCRIPTION of the same Trello card (not the BODY, sorry Fierce Geek), put “I BELIEVE this number of this segment will take this action by this date because…” Only ONE SEGMENT per card and only one card at a time Boone Bergsma. The “because” must be based on a SPECIFIC learning from the last 30 days. (See column 4 for examples of people who have been funded and read their stories here. See column 2 for mentors who can help you — comment right on their card or figure it out — if you make an attempt at least, someone will get in touch with you once your trello card is submitted to check in
  6. Here IS AN EXAMPLE OF A GOOD TRELLO CARD). Here is another one, how long did it take you to get here @mok_stephen IF you get to this point we will start piling on the mentors.
  7. Do 3 interviews with the segment described to the mentor, report the interviews here. (the mentor bot will direct you to another document, but use the one above — ask Mejo Kuriachan or Steven Sherman if you need help). Check in with Adam Berk at this point, or just post a link to your trello card as a comment to this blog. Breathe.
  8. RUN THE EXPERIMENT (if you need help, comment below, or if you are not ready to run the experiment you can do 25 interviews instead of 3 to fulfill this step and get paid — you must submit them in the same place as the other 3 — ask eske about this option)
  9. Write about your experiment here on Medium and add it to our publication (You must follow the instructions below for the post, and your post must include a link to your NEXT trello experiment)
  10. Leave at least one comment on one card in column 3. You got to column 4, help someone else get there.
  11. Get one of your mentors to contribute $1 to this fund (yup, we are getting aggressive with this experiment now as of 11/27/2017). As soon as your new trello card is submitted with your blog and your $1 mentor added to your card you get the money, just ask Batukhan Taluy. If you do not have a mentor, find one on twitter or LinkedIn with hashtag #leanstartup #mentor. The $1 must come from someone NEW to our community so Rene Bastijans does not count:) Or you can have them add one slide to this deck.


If you think you need help, ask Boone Bergsma — if you tell us to “look I am done give me money” and you do not follow the format, we reserve the right to pay you less than $500. You must post the blog in under 30 days. You can change your hypothesis if you must, but you can only have one card in column 4 at a time and the 30 days does not reset. You must go through the FULL process every time you change an approved card.

  1. PARAGRAPH 1 “My name is {insert name here and feel free to link to your current landing page or personal brand}. The individuals who helped me run this experiment are {link to the mentors who helped you — link directly to their mentor card on trello OR their landing page for their experiment} The link to my specific hypothesis on trello is.”
  2. PARAGRAPH 1.5 (Copy and paste the following = I am part of an experimental incubator that gives startups and entrepreneurs funding in exchange for testing and sharing leanstartup hypotheses).
  3. PARAGRAPH 2 This section will provide a quantifiable comparison of your prediction vs the results. This sections is mainly for mentors to get a snapshot.
  4. I THOUGHT that 5% of 1000 of this specific segment would do this — [this comes DIRECTLY FROM YOUR HYPOTHESIS word for word cut and paste it from trello, do not link to it we want to read it]
  5. ACTUALLY 3% of 500 people did this. In total, I have had conversations with THIS NUMBER OF PEOPLE who match the segment targeted in this experiment. [NO COMMENTARY HERE — this should be black and white which is why we ask for such specific predictions in the first place…]
  6. PARAGRAPH 3 COMMENTARY — take the MOST SURPRISING or MOST WRONG metric — and explain why you BELIEVE this happened… this can be positive or negative. Maybe 90% of 1000 people did something, THAT’S GOOD… but really it’s bad because of how far off you were. Before you try and scale, you need to know WHY. Maybe only 1% converted, maybe you only got 50 views… pick apart ONE SINGLE VARIABLE THAT WAS MOST WRONG.
  7. PARAGRAPH 4 BONUS COMMENTARY explain the rest of the variables…
  8. If your last experiment had negative results… restate your problem and customer statements here.
  9. PARAGRAPH 5 NEXT STEP… post it in the blog itself, and provide a LINK to the next experiment in trello. How does the funding factor in to that as well as your learning. The link to the next experiment in Trello is the single most important line in this blog. How does the articulation of your NEXT EXPERIMENT (and how you will spend our money) depend upon the learnings of your last experiment and your talks with mentors and customers so far)
  10. Comment on THIS POST that you are reading now with a link to your blog and a recommendation to the next entrepreneur taking the challenge!

(OPTIONAL, but make sure it is included if it did not come through above)

  1. The humans (who did you interview — why them)
  2. Your interpretation of the results — what you learned, they why

Your SECOND TRELLO CARD is the completion of the sprint

(we are still testing this new dynamic of the program, anyone AFTER Batukhan Taluy will be required to complete this step to receive the funds, he will be paid out no matter what

  1. My twitter handle is X please pay me, this is my second hypothesis and it is based on learnings
  2. I believe it will take this money money to prove that this customer will take this action by this date because
  3. Link to your blog post on medium
  4. Link to second mentor session
  5. Make sure the mentor who contributed at least $1 is on your card or ask Boone Bergsma how to do that)
  6. Ethereum address (if you do not have an account or wallet, we will do our best but the $500us might come in terms of Google adwords we pay or development costs etc)

Where is this money coming from?

The money is coming from the first ever fund based entirely on crowdfunding and blockchain on the way in and the way out.

Our thesis is that if we fund everyone, but in smaller batches (inspired by adobe kickbox) we can do a better job of TEACHING entrepreneurship and might actually DISCOVER some founders as a side.

WE ARE REALLY EXCITED FOR SOMETHING MAGICAL… after we raise the full fund, ANYONE WHO DOES the above will get funded automatically. They will press a button and will open the ETHEREUM FAUCET — they will get up to 10 ethereum coins (currently $1700us) AUTOMATICALLY. No angel or vc will be judging you or your idea, just your process!

Thanks for your help with this John Sechrest Craig Elias Fiodor Tonti Rene Bastijans Joshua Schukman

I believe 10 people will take our money and complete the challenge in the next 30 days.

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