With over 70 mentors and only 13 weeks, the e2e team is focused on identifying opportunities to tap into the knowledge and experience of the extensive bench of mentors beyond the weekly program that was already in place. After communicating with several Accelerators across the country, e2e Accelerator Director, Jacob Wayman, developed a concept known as the Customer Hack Night which was held for the first time on Thursday, July 28th .
The Customer Hack Night is an evening dedicated to bringing together an exclusive group of mentors to connect personally with each of the entrepreneurs currently moving through the e2e Accelerator. During the evening each entrepreneur is provided the opportunity to present on a project they are actively working on. Projects include branding, pricing structure or simply seeking advice on how their product(s) are perceived in the community.
“Every opportunity I’m provided an audience with the mentors, I always walk away with an additional idea that can be implemented immediately,” said Miguel Johns, Founder of KingFit. “For KingFit, the first Customer Hack Night has already led to some big changes for our company.”
Attended by many of our mentors, the evening was designed to be an intimate setting and provide the opportunity for the mentors to dive deeper into the entrepreneur’s companies. “Accelerators, at their core, are driven by the mentors, seasoned entrepreneurs, and industry experts within their communities,” says Wayman. “The Customer Hack Nights are designed to tap into the rich knowledge, skills and experience needed to develop the next generation of entrepreneurs here in Wichita.”
“e2e’s Customer Hack Night gave KNOXX an invaluable opportunity to collaborate with the network of e2e mentors to present and discuss the challenges we see on the horizon for our business and more importantly, the challenges we may not see coming,” said Mike Mathia, Founder of KNOXX. “Each of these mentors have a wealth of knowledge which includes their own prior successes and failures and their willingness to share that collective wisdom with the cohort companies is incredibly impactful.”
As the e2e continues forward through the 13-week program, the entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to connect with the mentors in a wide variety of avenues including a few more Customer Hack Nights. “With six different companies from six different industries, the entrepreneurs within the e2e Accelerator each bring a new set of challenges and opportunities each time they interact with a mentor,” stated Wayman. “The primary goal for the Customer Hack Night is to connect the entrepreneur(s) to the mentor(s) that can provide the guidance, inspiration and resources needed to assist in their acceleration here in Wichita.”