CTNext, in partnership with The Refinery, has developed a mentoring network of experienced entrepreneurs, executives and investors to help the accelerate the growth of Connecticut’s most promising early-stage ventures. Companies that are interested in participating must apply and have a product or digital service already launched or in test, a significant value proposition, a large market opportunity and a strong management team. We encourage companies with strong and diverse management teams to apply. The mentors will work with these select entrepreneurs to scale their business by validating their long-term visions, customer acquisition, and capital-raising strategies. Companies will have the opportunity to get objective feedback and guidance on growing a company; to be more knowledgeable about other resources, tools and programming; to become part of a community of like-minded people; and to increase network connections.
We are looking to round out our team of mentors with additional successful entrepreneurs/executives/investors that are ready to give back, and at the same time, help boost Connecticut’s economy and startup ecosystem. This is a unique opportunity help shape and participate in a startup mentor community and: make a difference in Connecticut’s growth economy; learn new things; and develop new connections.
Big news for companies considering applying for the new CTNext Mentor Network: Those companies that qualify for the network will become eligible to win a special EIA (Entrepreneur Innovation Award) worth up to $20,000.
Our goal is to match you—one of Connecticut’s most promising startups—with a local mentor who has proven experience to serve as a trusted sounding board and help accelerate your growth.
What do I get?
- A mentor with specific, relevant experience
- Support and feedback focused on your company
- Introductions to a new network of resources
How does it work?
If you’re accepted into the program, you’ll be matched with one of our mentors. He or she will then meet with you to help you address your high-level needs and tackle your areas of focus.
The program is limited to select early-stage companies based in Connecticut.
Companies must meet the following criteria:
- Have a proven product/market fit
- Are producing revenue/have traction (thresholds vary by industry)
- Represent an investable opportunity
- Have reached an inflection point for growth
- Have strong management team
We strongly encourage companies with diverse management teams to apply.
How do I get started?
To be considered, complete and submit the form below by 11:59 p.m. ET on Tuesday, February 19, 2019.
Would you like to make a difference in Connecticut’s growth economy? Are you interested in learning new things, developing new connections and being part of a community of like-minded people? You’ve come to the right place. We’re so glad you’re interested in becoming a mentor. We’re seeking experienced entrepreneurs, executives and investors with proven success in the startup ecosystem to mentor Connecticut’s most promising startups.
How do I know if I am eligible?
Criteria for acceptance are:
- Startup experience–either as a founder, investor or leadership team member
- Prior mentoring experience
- Not looking to sell services to startups
- Willing to give at least one hour per week for three to four months
- Specific leadership, functional or industry expertise
How does it work?
If you are approved to become a mentor, you will participate in a mentor matching/company pitch event and you will select companies to work with. We will match you with those high-growth companies that will benefit from your unique experience. You’ll work with the leadership teams to ask the probing questions that will help solve high-level business challenges, offer introductions to your network, advice on how to scale and more.
What’s expected of me?
You’ll be expected to offer “office hours” (in person or virtually) at least once a week for a three-to four-month period.
We will provide training and guidance on our structured program and our company tracking and scheduling platform so you’re well prepared.
How do I get started?
To be considered, complete and submit this form by 11:59p.m. ET on Tuesday, February 19, 2019.
Deadline Extended to Tuesday, February 19, 2019:
Deadline for company and mentor applications
Now, having overcome many obstacles and persevered through many challenges, it's time for me to do my part in helping other startup founders on their path to success.