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Launch Your Business Silicon Valley Style
Learn from Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, investors, and thought leaders how to launch, grow and fund a profitable and scalable company.
Lift the quality of your life and that of thousands of future customers.
IS THIS YOU?
I have an idea but I don't know where to start.
I admire entrepreneurs but who am I to start a business? Don't I need at least an MBA and startup experience to launch my company?
I feel lonely on my startup journey - none of my friends understand me.
I am stuck. I don't know which step to take next. It's overwhelming.
I do not have the right network to fundraise for my business.
IF THIS IS YOU, I HAVE GOOD NEWS FOR YOU
We created a mini MBA for entrepreneurs like YOU to launch your business with the help of 40 of the best Silicon Valley founders, investors and thought leaders.
SOUNDS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE?
Listen to what Chelsey Glasson, Founder of Crucé has to say:
Enrolling in the GUILD Academy was on my bucket list for a while, and boy am I happy that I finally took the leap and completed the course! I've worked in product development and design for over a decade at some of the world's most notable tech companies including Google and Facebook. All those years I dreamed of using my skills to start my own company, but I hadn't the slightest clue as to how to get started.
Launching a company felt risky, daunting, complicated...surely not something I could do.
In just eight weeks I went from idea to launching a public benefit corporation ..., all thanks to the GUILD Academy and Anne Cocquyt's fantastic coaching.
Chelsey Glasson, Founder of Crucé
WHAT IF YOU, TOO COULD...
... launch a company in 2 months
... build your dream business
... create change in the world
... be your own boss
... create something out of nothing
... fundraise with confidence
THE TRUTH IS
Traditional MBAs are not that useful anymore;
... and overpriced IMHO
You meet professors and "experts" whose knowledge is not that relevant by the time they teach. We live in a fast-moving technology and startup world. Furthermore, the templates they share (if any) are not practical. You might learn how to account for a car on your company's balance sheet, but what about practical advice for first-time entrepreneurs who don't have a company car just yet?
LISTEN TO WHAT OTHERS HAVE TO SAY
"I’ve grown more in the last 4 weeks than in 4 years in university. Although the University of San Francisco is an exceptional institution, the Guild provides education in more ways than one. I am learning so much and it has only been a month!
The material is presented in such a clear concise manner that it is easy to understand. Oftentimes, I have experienced people explaining something so much to the point of confusion rather than clarity. But not with The Guild. I am very grateful for you Anne and the community you have put together here. I know without a shadow of a doubt that I will be able to achieve my goals not just in business but in life"
Silvana Angulo, Founder at Lashmap
WE INVITE YOU TO
Make a commitment and start your entrepreneurial journey today
In this step-by-step program, you will learn how to use existing tools to prototype your idea, get user feedback early on, make confident startup decision so that by the time you launch your product or service, it is something people can't wait to get their hands on and willing to pay for!
Short-cut the Blah Blah and endless Googling, build your products with confidence, avoid expensive mistakes and learn how to build the network to fundraise for your company
We asked over 40 of Silicon Valley’s best and most reputable experts to share their top insights and knowledge with you.
Meet the speakers who share their expertise,
insights, unique perspectives and
company-building secrets with you
Learn from them in video modules, recorded interviews, ask me anything sessions, webinars, panel conversations and pitch feedback sessions.
THE GUILD ACADEMY PROGRAM
The GUILD Academy is for you if you are an aspiring entrepreneur ready to put in the hard work to build a scalable and fundable business.
The 8-week program provides the foundation for startup success.
Get your questions answered within 24 hrs (and many times within minutes) right in the course activity feed or group chat and join office hours
Join weekly live study hall sessions for the first 8-weeks (can be extended)
ACT NOW BONUS:
1 x 45 min 1:1 coaching and startup strategy sessions with Anne Cocquyt - book when it fits your schedule best
Complete all tasks and showcase your startup at the next GUILD Startup Showcase
All course materials are accessible
at your own pace
8 Modules with short video masterclasses in each module full of advice by world experts in building successful businesses (no blah blah)
Access to recorded "Ask Me Anything" sessions with leading experts for each of the modules
A Toolbox and recommendations with the best software tools and solutions for your journey as a builder and founder
Your personal Workbook with practical exercises and mastermind prompts
Read-Set-Go Startup Templates (Examples: Idea decision matrix, user interview templates, business model canvas, co-founder checklist, fundraising pipeline, ready to launch checklist, ...)
Highly curated content libraries with up-to-date articles, podcasts, recordings, books and tools to dive deeper
WHAT YOU WILL LEARN IN THE GUILD ACADEMY
TO LAUNCH YOUR STARTUP
In module one of the program, we focus on VALIDATING YOUR IDEA and setting goals. Define what success looks like. Give yourself permission to brainstorm and fully discover your curiosity. Use GUILD templates to prioritize your ideas and decide which idea to take through this program.
Study Hall Welcome: Join us at the GUILD study hall session and bring your questions.
Set SMART goals for the program
Create your Idea Wallet and Bug List
Sort your ideas
Decide on an idea to pursue with the help of the idea decision matrix
Find out which entrepreneur's face you are
Decide on your secret reward when completing the program
Meet your peers and High Achievers
Module 2 is a masterclass in USER RESEARCH. As entrepreneurs we have to be brave and talk to people! This will be a big part of your entrepreneurial journey ... have a curious mindset and ask your target customer about their experiences with the problem you are solving. At the end of this module you will have talked to 5-10 users and know with confidence their biggest pain point and who you are targeting.
Define a clear and concise user persona
Schedule your first user interview
Get step-by-step tactics how to reach out to users
Utilize the ready-set-go user interview template
Articulate the problem you are solving
Create your first pitch deck slide
Capture feedback in the User Emotions Template
In Module 3 you will learn how to build a PRODUCT PROMISE landing page.
Decide which no-code or low-code platform to use without tech overwhelm and which elements you need for a convincing product promise landing page.
You will test your assumptions with your first A/B test and learn which tools to use to measure success.
Build your product promise landing page to test your problem statement
Decide with confidence which platform to use with the GUILD toolbox
Implement analytics to evaluate your success
Learn how to write website copy
Create your first campaign to capture and convert website traffic into sales
In module 4 you put on the hat of a product manager and build your MINIMUM VIABLE PRODUCT. You will also play Chief Branding Officer and decide on your core values.
Build a low-fidelity prototype to mimic the functionality of your solution. Prioritize key features of your product. Explore no-code tools available to build your MVP.
Decide with confidence which features to build and cut cost
Understand the different types of MVPs
Choose your no-code tool to put a functional MVP together
Build your MVP
Create a brand deck to elevate your brand and build trust
Define your core value and your "why"
Articulate your mission statement and the impact of your company
This part of the academy dives into how to RUN YOUR BUSINESS. It includes a crash course in business models, finances, and how to build a sustainable financial model that supports you, your team and the growth of your company.
In this module, you will explore the different options to create revenue for your business.
Learn from 50+ Business Model Examples
Experiment and build out 5 business model canvases
Run a test to validate your business model
Know how to price, position, and deliver your value proposition
Create your business model slide
Relax with a self-care exercise
It is time to talk about all things GO TO MARKET and marketing your product or service now that you have created an irresistible brand and a business model.
Identify your target market, who to partner with, how to launch your product and which channels to focus on. You will learn the skills to start acquiring your first customers while testing if and how much they pay for your product.
Craft a powerful marketing strategy that helps you differentiate from the competition
Get a solid grasp on all the different "departments" of marketing
Generate an offer that is exactly what your customers want to buy
Understand the difference between paid marketing and organic marketing
Measure the success of your marketing campaign with easy-to-implement tools from the GUILD Toolbox
FUNDING and which types of funding are available to your business is the big topic in this module.
Understand your funding options from bootstrapping all the way to Venture Capital. Get familiar with the pros and cons of bootstrapping, crowdfunding, revenue share models, grants, bank loans, angel investment and Venture Capital (VC).
Confidently set course for your company and decide on your non-negotiables
Develop a deep understanding of the pros and cons of funding options
Look behind the scenes of VCs
Plan your fundraising strategy
Build a solid financial forecast
Access the GUILD's rolodex of investors
Last but not least, you will get ready to launch. Create a compelling story and prepare to PITCH by honing your storytelling skills. You iterate on your idea one more time, by building out your pitch deck.
Attend the pitch masterclass and get feedback on your pitch before joining the stage and showcasing the company you built.
Learn in the pitch masterclass which slides you need
Build a rock-solid beautiful pitch deck
Learn storytelling tactics important to convince investors, advisors, vendors or team members to join you on your journey
Get a 7-step checklist for zoom pitches
Pitch at the GUILD startup showcase at the next SERENDIPITY summit with investors and pitch experts (optional!)
GET STARTED TODAY
Choose The Plan That Works Best For You
All programs are equity-free!
one payment of
3 monthly payments of
100% Satisfaction Guarantee
You are eligible for a refund after submitting 4 weeks of coursework. If you tell us that you didn't see the value, we will refund you, no questions asked.
GET STARTED TODAY
AND GET AN ADDITIONAL $2,675 IN BONUSES
Break into the world of Silicon Valley and Startups
Bonus 1: List of more than 400 female-focused startup ecosystem partners like angel groups, investors, VC firms, educational programs, startup competitions and more
Bonus 2: 1-Year GUILD PRO Membership & Access to quarterly summits
Bonus 3: Metrics and Market Masterclass - Deep dive on product and business metrics to set up your company dashboard for full control
Bonus 4: Financial Forecasting Crash Course - How much will be in your bank account in a year from now? How much funding do you need?
Bonus 5: COO & HR Toolkit - How to decide who to hire and how. Includes contract templates, toolbox, organizational best practice guide
Act Now Bonus: Complimentary consultation / coaching call with Anne
Tools, guides and templates you will have access to
A matrix to help you overcome idea paralysis
Making user interviews less daunting and more fun with ready-set-go User Interview templates
Survey Canvas - How to get insights, not just answers
Instructions for creating your Product Promise Landing Page in a weekend
30 tools to simulate any MVP no matter how techy your industry
Marketing Channel Prioritization System to choose your channel without social media overwhelm
The Pirate Funnel Template: Don’t let 98% of the traffic on your website slip away - Understand the power of lead magnets and the pirate funnel
Mindmap: Create Content Ideas for 6 months in 2 hours
Avoiding accounting mess - The accounting system that works for you not against you
Tools and templates how to incorporate with confidence without hiring $1,000/hr lawyers
Your company dashboard and your Northstar Metric
Recipe for cooking up your first engaging email marketing campaign and how to automate emails
A beautiful Workbook with exercises, motivation and explanation each week
Beyond colors and fonts - a guide of how to develop your brand, strategy, values and a brand book
Business Model Canvas - case studies of different business models and how to test them
I need money - funding checklist on which questions to ask before deciding on how to fund your business
Fundraising Strategy 15-step to-do list
Investor Pipeline template
Hire like a pro - Step by step guide on how to set up a hiring process
Startup Templates, advisor agreements, employee contracts and NDAs to make startup life easy
Sales teams - tip sheet on how to get the best performance from your sales team
Working with contractors and agencies - what to think about before pulling the trigger
Co-Founder decision support framework - Do I need a co-founder?
Co-founder Checklist to ensure you talked about everything before s*** hits the fan
Startup COO 101 - setting up structure and process for early-stage companies without red tape
Company Update - 5 tips how to structure a concise company update and activate your advisors and investors
Self-care Exercises in each module to keep you happy and healthy
Business Readiness Checklist - Are you ready to take the leap?
Beautiful Online Platform and App with all course materials
We don't just copy one approach that's proven in the startup world. We use our own concoction of the latest methodologies, proprietary templates, and highly curated resources based on what worked for entrepreneurs and investors who just successfully launched their business, raised funding, or invested in startups.
DON'T TAKE OUR
WORD FOR IT
"As someone with no experience in business or entrepreneurship, the academy has been the blueprint I needed to make my idea a reality.
It provided the exact steps and the right resources for me to launch my MVP and get the first paying customers.
Anne & her team did a phenomenal job with the content, and choosing the right experts. They supported us every step of the way, answering questions, providing perks, webinars, resources, basically anything we needed.
The 1:1 sessions with Anne were invaluable to get the feedback I needed on my pitch and progress. I'll definitely refer back to the learnings from the academy often as I progress with my business. It's been one of the best decisions I've made. Thank you GUILD academy!"
Lirida Kercelli, Founder Learnable
100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEE
leap into entrepreneurship
Each week, you can access a new module of the program.
If after 4 weeks you are not convinced that this program will help you take the leap into entrepreneurship, submit 4 weeks of coursework and we will issue a full refund. We ask for the coursework because we believe in the transformational power of the program and want you to experience it too.
GUILD Academy Total Value: $21,675
YOUR GUILD Academy investment: $997
Here is what's included in the GUILD Academy
8-Module GUILD Academy Program
This 8-Module system has been created with 30 of the most relevant experts in entrepreneurship from Silicon Valley
Ready-Set-Go Templates and Checklists
These templates have been developed with entrepreneurs, experts in finance, lawyers and user researchers to bring you the most relevant checklists, templates and guides to launch your business without having to reinvent the wheel
The bonus materials and masterclasses to build your team and organize your business as well as operating with a company dashboard that investors will appreciate is a mini MBA in business operations in itself.
24/7 startup support for 8 weeks + weekly study hall
Get 24/7 guidance and encouragement from our team of startup coaches and experts via chat on the GUILD platform - get your questions answered within hours.
Join weekly guided study hall sessions on Wednesdays 12:00-1:00 pm PST.
Am I the right fit for the program?
FREE BUSINESS READINESS CHECKLIST
This comprehensive 30 question Yes / No checklist has been developed with experts from the GUILD Academy program.
Get instant access to the business readiness checklist.
BOOK A FREE CALL WITH OUR TEAM AT THE END OF THE CHECKLIST
MEET YOUR PROGRAM HOST
Anne Cocquyt, originally from Stuttgart Germany, is a serial entrepreneur and super-connector in the US startup ecosystem. After building partnerships for Genentech’s innovation team, she founded her own startups and serves as an advisor to tech startups, digital health startups, a fund, angel investors, and corporate innovators.
"Nothing gives me more joy than seeing founders have breakthroughs, get their first paying customers, raise funding, and build their dream company."
"I have been coached by Anne years ago when I was an Executive in a company but also very recently when I just launched my first business. I keep coming back to her because of her caliber. Her experience as a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, community builder, and business coach is simply amazing."
Claire Saccoccini, Founder at The Graceful app
"I booked Anne for a reason few of you probably will: To get some granular feedback on my consulting platform NeedHop because she’s exploded with bookings in a week’s time! I wanted to understand what was working for her and what we could do. But in that conversation, it became clear to me why so many people are booking her: She had fantastic, no nonsense startup advice. If you are thinking of building something or in the early stages, you won’t regret booking her time. You will regret it if you don’t do it immediately because she’s one of our most popular mentors and books up quickly!"
Sarah Lacy, Founder and CEO Chairman Mom
"Before the coaching call I was a bit anxious to speak with Anne, I had already rescheduled our meeting once and was starting the busiest work week of the year. I was running on 5 hours of sleep and felt guilty pulling myself away from my job.
After the call I was beaming with energy (smiling!), and felt so much clarity with where I wanted to go with my business- and how I was going to get there. Anne helped me break down actionable steps towards a launch, what once seemed like mountains to climb, and I could even start this week. Thank you!"
Madeline McKinnon, Media Buyer at The Action Network, Aspiring Entrepreneur
"Anne is so incredibly knowledgeable. I came into our meeting thinking that I was going to go in a certain direction with my business. I left our conversation with 4 other great options for other directions I could take. I really feel like my horizon was expanded by talking to Anne."
Courtney Flynn, CEO Supply Chain Savvy
JUDGE US BY THE RESULTS AND REACTIONS OF
Our company has made such progress since the Guild! Since your class, our team has flourished and we have the most amazing partnerships and are in go to market strategy after we get through the regulatory pathway. We have partnered with a company that will manufacture our custom kiosk.
We are opening up a Friends and Family round (and possibly the right angel).
Hope all is well with you! I just want to thank you for your awesome course - it was a game-changer and it made us pivot in the right direction.
Amber Norbeck , Co-Founder of Aspir (now Opio Connect)
Dr. Julie Hakim,
MD and Medical Director of Femtech Focus
Participating in the Femtech Edition of the Guild Academy 8 week virtual accelerator course gave me essentially everything I wish I had not learned the hard way!
The information presented was perfectly distilled and action-oriented. The pacing of the curriculum, the inspirational speakers provided prescient take-ways, the access to experts and the ability to ask focused questions pertaining to my startup was absolutely invaluable to me and my team.
I think everyone who is considering a startup or business, who is currently in one, or who needs some additional focused training, should go through this accelerator.
You will up-level everything you know or thought you knew about the science and art of creating and sustaining a successful business. Do yourself and your team a favor - sign up, invest the time, and get ready to 10x what you are capable of.
For our crowdfunding campaign we did hit our first $50k and are now continuing to raise which is exciting.
We actually launch sales this Friday with 30% off sitewide. We just signed deal with a large medical group to offer our products through their member network which should be incredible for distribution and have now signed a few retailers. Very exciting stuff. It was over a year ago we started so it's truly amazing to be here now, even though Covid.
And I even won a pitch event I just did thanks to all your feedback and practice opportunities :)
Davina Kaonohi, CEO and co-founder of Element Apothec
January Edwards, Digital Marketing Specialist
I’ve been in the business world for over 5 years now and I’ve come across different courses and programs that aim to help founders to build and grow their business.
After going through the Guild summer academy, I can definitely say that the GUILD is amazingly different!
The modules contain just the right amount of material and information you need to go through every phase of building a startup. There are lots of added benefits like the community of supportive and inspiring founders, 4-week sprints, and amazing events with thought leaders.
My 1:1 session with Anne really helped me streamline and define my interest and passion. I can’t recommend the GUILD Academy enough and Anne is just wonderful!
Oh, and I got to know the GUILD via a recommendation. Goes to show how much members really value what the Guild offers.
"This program is truly one of a kind - it's nothing short of extraordinary. I feel prepared every time I walk into a business meeting (for my startup) and without a doubt in my mind the GUILD Academy helped me feel that way.
One of my favorite aspects of the academy are the AMA sessions with an industry superstar."
Hallie Salko, Founder of Bluppy
The Guild Academy is helping me get started on my business idea from scratch. It's saving me so much time from having to read endless resources and figuring things out by trial-and-error. The experts bring in their valuable experience from working with so many entrepreneurs/startups.
Thank you for the encouragement already Anne. I already feel different – understood, and among like-minded help. This company feels like the work I will spend the rest of my life delivering. But it is a hard fit with other programs. I feel at home already! Diving in to my modules now. Thank you again!
You feed my motivation. You opened my eyes and it helped me to walk in the right direction.
This week was so incredibly helpful in helping me realize exactly what I need to focus on both now and later down the line in my business model! It is awesome to see everything coming together so cohesively as we move forward in the program!
I absolutely love the GUILD Academy materials (packed with nuggets of wisdom) and the guest speakers are super helpful. This journey is amazing, I learned so much. It challenges me in so many ways, nudging me to be courageous, and yes, the journey is indeed the reward!
Terrific resources, tools, and weekly challenges push me to take actual steps and help me to get closer to my dream. Plus the opportunity to ask questions and receive support anytime :-)
This Accelerator is exactly what I needed. Girlfriends are a great personal support system, but only other female entrepreneurs can truly understand what you are going through. They are kindred spirits who understand the journey, will hold you accountable, and are a community you can call when you need an ear.
This was the most useful session on pitches. I learned a lot just by listening to the investor’s feedback.
YOU ARE PART OF SOMETHING BIGGER
THE GUILD - A COMMUNITY OF LIKE-MINDED FEMALE ENTREPRENEURS AND EXPERTS
Hear what GUILD members say
I wanted to let you know that from the founder/funder session, I got to meet a VC and they are making an investment. Thanks so much.
Highly actionable sessions at SERENDIPITY. Transformational experience with high quality content and the same incredible attendees of high caliber that I am matched with on the GUILD. I loved the diversity and relevance of every session.
We met Jill Bourque, Founder & CEO of Rushhtix, at last year’s Guild SERENDIPITY conference which resulted in an investment. Thanks to the Guild and Serendipity for connecting amazing founders & funders together.
Being a startup starting from scratch, it was important to hear stories from others, and be apprised of the available resources, and the support network. This is encouraging because many times I do not know what I do know, now I know of outlets who can assist.
I truly felt like I was not only learning from experts, but that they truly valued and supported me
Best virtual conference experience I've had so far!
Simply an inspiring and humbling experience being at SERENDIPITY 2020! I am so grateful to be part of a global community of like-minded female leaders & entrepreneurs, who are making an impact by being trailblazers, catalysts, thought leaders.
Thanks to the GUILD founder funder program, I got introduced to a company I invested in at the beginning of Aletta Angels
Frequently asked questions
I don't know if my idea is good enough to start a business. Will the Academy help me with this?
Yes! The first module in the GUILD Academy is built for entrepreneurs who are still choosing their idea. You will learn how to sort through your overwhelming flurry of ideas and get to a point where you feel confident to take one idea through the program.
Entrepreneurship is all about test and trial.
I am not rich - can I start a business?
Yes, you can! You don't need a rich uncle or aunt in order to build a successful scalable business. In the academy you will learn ...
If your idea can gain traction with paying users early on
How much investment it will take you to get the company to be profitable
Where you can find investment and which investment is right for you
How much you want to have saved before making a bold move
If your business is venture-fundable and how to go about the fundraising process
Do I need an MBA to start my own company?
We dubbed this program miniMBA for first-time entrepreneurs for a reason: We do not believe that you need academic education in order to start and run a successful business.
I have a full-time job - can I start a business on the side?
Many have done it before you! You are not the first to start thinking about an idea and testing the waters before taking the leap. Nor should you take the leap before you undertand startup fundamentals!
Will I be able to get advice directly from Anne?
You can ask any question in the program's activity feed and get answers from Anne and the GUILD team 24/7 within hours so you are never stuck!
How much time should I plan for this program each week? Can I pause?
We recommend that you budget 5 - 10hrs per week. This is for the content and video module, digging into additional content, and your workbook task. We ensure that you set goals at the beginning of the program. Depending on your goals your time effort will differ widely. Some weeks will be more intensive with regards to your tasks than others.
Do you offer scholarships?
Yes we do! Please submit your application here: https://getguilded.typeform.com/to/l00oOi
Who is the prefect candidate for the GUILD Academy?
The Academy is right for you if you ...
Are someone with an idea that can scale beyond your local home market
Have a product in the market at the prototyping stages but have not yet raised funding
Are willing to put in the hard work
Want to build something that can scale while being conscious of your core values
Know that you need to ask questions
Are curious about funding options
Are willing and able to take direction
Are curious and open-minded to discover your users' pain
Are ready to discover your own limitations and ready to ask for support
Want to learn from others in a group
Do well in an online program where self-discipline is a prerequisite
Think you already know everything there is about entrepreneurship
Want to make a quick buck
Have a hard time taking advice and getting feedback
Are a coach looking for ways to grow
Want to sell to the participants in the academy
Are an investor - we have opportunities for you to get to know our founders in other ways
Bring negativity to the group - it can be hard to be an entrepreneur, but we focus on solutions, not dwelling in pain :)
Let us talk about Consumer Testimonials for a moment.
Your results from the GUILD Academy may vary from consumer testimonials listed on this page. Many companies fail, especially in the startup space. We know that only a fraction of companies get funded by Venture Capitalists. Your results will be based on your goals, your level of effort, your business savvy, personal qualities, knowledge, skills, your market, timing and many other factors. Since this differs for each individual, we cannot guarantee your success, results, income or fundraising results, nor are we responsible for your success or failure.
It takes lots of time, effort, and dedication to build a scalable startup. We believe that we provide you with an incredible program to achieve your desired results, and the testimonials from recent participants in the program agree.