DreamScaping Workshop at WEConnect ‘Think Big’ event

On 19th November 2013, women entrepreneurs from all over the country gathered at hotel JW Marriott in Bangalore to be a part of a one day ‘Think Big’ conference. This event was organized by WEConnect International, a global non-profit aimed at promoting the interests of women owned businesses. The theme of this years event aimed to bring to the front the importance of thinking big for the women entrepreneurs.

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DREAM:IN was excited to come in as a partner for this event and we conducted a DreamScaping workshop to further drive in the point of thinking big and bold.

The workshop was headed by Sonia Manchanda, Founder, DREAM:IN. It was held in a breakout room for 20 participants who were assisted by 17 mentors from the business and design field. However, there was a lot of excitement for the workshop so we ended up accommodating around 20 more people who observed and eventually participated in the workshop.

The mentors were-

Eleanor Horowitz- Unitus Seed Fund

Francois Xavier Bertschy- Consultant, industry and service based companies

Aleksandra Rose- Dean, NICC, Bangalore

Vijay Ladha- Entrepreneur and Director, Make a Wish Foundation, Bangalore

Ekta Manchanda- Senior Designer, Idiom Design and Consultancy

Mo Polamar- CEO, Climate Miles

Kannan Mehta- Designer, Idiom Design and Consultancy

Nivina Hamid- Designer, Idiom Design and Consultancy

Arundhuti Gupta- Founder, Mentor Together

Rana Chakrabarti- Designer, SAP

Arjun Chetna- Designer, Wink

Shashank PS- Investment Professional, Bessemer Venture Partners

Vipin Pathiyil- HOD, Communication design, NICC

Miriam- Intern Designer at Idiom Design and Conculting

Freeda Lazar- Designer, Idiom Design and Consultancy

B Mohan Kumar- Serial entrepreneur, Founder, Trusted Technology Solutions

Rahul Vijaykumar- DREAM:IN

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Mentors interacting with the participants

At each table there were 2 participants who were guided by a design and a business mentor. The sessions were divided such that after understanding the elements of DreamScaping every participant was given time for focused work on their idea. Together as a team every person at a table worked to identify the opportunities, challenges and the big dreams that a woman entrepreneur had for their business.

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DreamScaping away!

Once every participant had finished the DreamScape, they were invited to present their ideas to everyone. Francois, Eleanor, Vijay and Aleksandra served as super mentors who were assigned the task of giving feedback to the presentations.

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Presenting their ideas!

The presentations made were extremely interesting and showcased the commitment the participants had to their ventures. The businesses here spanned day care centres to old age homes, jewellery design, cafes, sustainability, energy and power and many more. The presentations were interjected with personal experiences, insights and humour. It was great to see how the women were able to connect their businesses with one another and even find clients in the room!

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Mentor Feedback!

The feedback from the super mentors was extremely positive and they noted the fact that the businesses created by the women all came from a deep rooted sense of passion. They were impressed by the clarity of thought and the sense of collaboration. Their feedback also included the advice to keep numbers and facts in mind and having constant reality checks as the participants delved deeper into their businesses.

The super mentors also took the time to award 3 business ideas they felt were most inclusive, innovative, impactful and creative. These businesses included ‘Café Totaram’ by Ranjana Singhal, a day care centre by Meena S. and a power supply idea in South Africa by Najmah Mallik. The women owners of these businesses were given ‘Creative Intelligence’, a book penned by Bruce Nussbaum, ex-editor of Business Week.

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Meena from Bright Vista presenting her dream!

The workshop closed with a facilitation for Sonia by Anasuya Gupta, a WEConnect winner of the ‘Outstanding woman contribution’ award.

The workshop had a great energy and we received very positive feedback. We look forward to having more collaboration with WEConnect and working with women entrepreneurs!

You can find out more about WEConnect here:  http://weconnectinternational.org/

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