Jon Bradford is one of the most prolific names in the startup world. The current managing director of TechStars London, he's created/co-founded/developed some of the most influential and successful accelerators in the world.
Arguably one of the most knowledgeable people about business and the startup scene in Europe, Jon saw venture capital as “writing expensive lottery tickets” and saw more promise in the accelerator scene.
For the uninitiated; a startup accelerator is a a scheme in which startup teams are given mentorship and guidance over a set period of time, at the end of which the startup team present themselves to investors. Due to the involvement of mentors, accelerators are considered less risky as the startups are given a definite direction.
Jon's role is to help startups get investment and turn an idea into a viable business platform and is therefore designed to give solid, practical business advice. Incredibly 90 per cent of startups that get picked up by the TechStars program get funded, and that's largely due to their rigorous selection process.
Because so much time is spent on iterating these startups to make them the best they can be before they step in front of investors, TechStars need to know that they're getting the cream of the crop. In an interview with SeriousStartups Jon revealed that his killer question is this: “Tell me something impressive about you”
We Europeans aren't the best at bragging and Jon finds that the question reveals what we hold dearest, or the thing that we value the most about ourselves. By discovering what we value about ourselves Jon can then determine if your character is right for TechStars. He gave the example of someone who answered the question with a story about how they had gotten hit by a car and spent two years learning to walk again. What that showed Jon was that person's level of motivation, drive, and determination.
So, dear reader, tell us something impressive about you.
If you'd like to know more check out Startup Grind London's website.
Image credit: Official LEWEB Photos