Success is a delivery not the time spent -TopMonks pushing startups towards success

Who are TopMonks?

“We are your software development partners, experienced with both startup and corporate environment. We make startups a success by taking care of their technical execution. In exchange for equity.”

Jan Lopusek, net-worker @ TopMonks startup studio helped us understand their credo and values and how TopMonks works with startups for mutual success.

TopMonks is a Best accelerator and incubator programme category Finalist at CESAwards 2018

“What is your credo? Like what is the heart and soul of your accelerator?”

Because we are a free company that aims for decentralisation and supports freedom and creativity at work, we have crafted an extensive set of rules, or better said guidelines for each member.

导 Learn or die. Teach or die. Only learning and teaching brains flourish.

灵 Have an entrepreneurial mind. Spin-offs of our former team members are welcome.

勇 Be brave. Provide a sincere feedback regardless of the circumstances.

自由 Your freedom can’t affect the freedom of others.

看板 Success is a delivery not the time spent. Don’t wait to be asked for your next task, find it yourself.

改善 Life is a constant change. Embrace it.

无国界 Our company is a living organism interconnected with our partners, customers, and community. There are no borders.

共享 Give and you shall receive.

怪事 Weirdness, non-conformity is welcome.

“What excites you the most about your work, and what is that single moment in your past that you are most proud of?”

There are many inspiring moments, from successes, we are proud of having a global company in a portfolio, which we were developing from scratch called PricefX. Another regional success is hiring portal Techloop. When you see these projects raising millions of dollars, these are definitely moments of appreciation.

But we don’t live from past successes. Life is a constant change and what really drives us is the day to day creativity of every entrepreneur we came across. We always learn new things mutually, we learn about new segments and niche innovations that no one thought about and than follow and observe pure moments of creativity when prototyping or building first MVPs. As angel investors, we really enjoy when new companies are being born.

“…and fails? We all have them, but what were your most spectacular ones? Of course only the ones you wish to share”

For example, we delivered one MVP 4 months later because we mismanaged our resources and our developers had to work on 2 projects simultaneously. Or it took us too long to realize that one partner is not really capable of delivering the project that he pitched us and we ended cooperation three months after the start. We should have seen it in first weeks.

“We all know entrepreneurship is a difficult road to take, especially in the world of startups; are there any mantras, hobbies or routines that you use to keep your mind and body healthy?”

That is quite a subjective approach, so I will tell my personal mantras. My brother used to tell me, that: “If it would be an easy thing to do, then anybody could be doing it…” I think of this in the hard times. My father used to say that: “everything is related to everything.” I keep this in mind to understand the broad horizons of every human action. On top of this, I am very affiliated to the company values. They provide me freedom and teach responsibility to grow.

In general level, lot of Monks are very sporty, we have yoga classes in the office and our company culture serves the needs of our healthy lifestyle.

“Dealing with more early-stage startups, what do you see as the biggest challenge for them?”

In this stage it’s the Market entry. So you’ve validated the idea, how do you convert your validation into commercial success?

“Running an accelerator, what is the most important thing to have? What makes an accelerator successful and loved/ needed?”

Chamath Palihapitiya, CEO of Social Capital said: “Everybody is bullshitting” (in VC) in other words, there is no pattern recognition for eventual successes. He is the first that tries to implement a data-driven investment by introducing Capital as a Service. When you are an angel investor, there’s typically no data to catch up on. So the decision making, how to identify key qualities in people and project is really the key in a startup studio. And to be loved? We can’t get more loved, so come and meet us for some insights :) Oh yes, and needed… This is a long-term commitment with results on the way.

“Who are you most excited about in your local startup ecosystem and why?”

I really think highly about the Credo Ventures. It’s a healthy combination of really smart people with great characters doing an amazing job in the VC investment I like Opero coworking and I’m looking forward to what new HubHub will bring to the market. And obviously, Cedric Maloux from Startupyard is a real hustler. He is basically the cornerstone of the ecosystem in Czech republic.

“In your opinion what are the single best and the single worst things running a startup from Central Europe?”

Worst thing — a location that influences minds. It’s hard to find real sales oriented globally thinking people. With something real. The closed borders and size of the market really influence how people think about projects. There are very few big IPOs.

Best thing — we are close to Berlin. No, I’m joking. Czech and Slovaks although are typically not the founders, leaders, and faces of the big companies, but the technical knowledge of the people here is really outstanding. Go to any top tech company in the worlds and I’m sure you will find plenty of them. So the technical level of people in these countries is on high level.