Imagine you’re entrepreneurs pitching your idea to venture capitalists—present your key selling points, how the idea can make money, and why people will buy it.
👥 4 to 12 participants | ⏰ between 30 and 90 minutes
It’s easy to generate concepts where money, time and technical capacity are unlimited, or ideas that look good in theory, but are impractical in reality. This exercise brings attention back to the real world.
You play the role of entrepreneurs who need to sell your idea to a group of venture capitalists (VCs) by focusing on feasibility and viability. What are the key selling points? How can this make money? Why will people buy it? This exercise captures the different perspectives that different groups have about a concept, product, service, or prototype, and also the type of language everyone uses to define it. The questions the VCs ask usually expose weak points or help clarify ideas, which can then be discussed by the larger group.
- Divide people into small groups, ideally pairs or triads. One group should take the role the VCs, while the others are ‘entrepreneurs’.
- A product or service is defined and agreed on by the group.
- Individually, each group spends 10 minutes formulating their pitch to be presented to the VCs. They can write, draw and rehearse: the creation is really up to each group. Ideally they should be in separate rooms or breakout spaces while creating the pitches.
- All groups should be aware that one or two representatives will present the pitch verbally to the VCs but the whole group will answer their questions. It is also important to cap preparation time (around 10 minutes is good), since over-elaborating an idea can take away the true nature of their thoughts.
- Towards the end of the preparation time, the VCs give groups a time-warning: ‘You have 2 minutes prep remaining’.
- Each group then presents their pitch – a time limit (3 minutes) is given for each presentation and the VCs can ask up to two questions each.
- It’s not essential, but to add a sense of competition, the VCs can decide which pitch is the winner at the end.