By Lydia Markwick, Pearson Business School student
Here’s the latest progress on Yaantu, a start-up run by myself and Jack, a fellow student on the BSc (Hons) Business & Enterprise course here at Pearson College London. If you missed my earlier post then do check it out!
Since I last blogged we’ve made some exciting progress, from launching the beta site to speaking at our first ever conference.
These past few months we’ve worked really hard to create a functional and user-friendly website and it’s finally up and running. In my previous post I talked about how valuable the help of our peers and lecturers has been. As it turns out they make great test subjects too so we’ve been running trials within the college to help us get feedback and make sure we’re providing the best solution to the companies we work with.
Through Pearson College London’s business partners we have also had the chance to present to large and influential industry bodies including UK Active and the British Heart Foundation. Not only does it give us invaluable pitch practice but also an opportunity to get some feedback. It can be surprisingly difficult to get people to tell you their reservations and give it an honest criticism and it’s really important that we understand what people are thinking. Through Pearson College London we’ve been able to get in-depth positive and critical feedback so that we can adapt and streamline the product to better meet the needs of our clients and users.
Perhaps our most exciting adventure was on our recent trip to Florence where we were invited to speak at Digital Health 2015, a part of the annual WWW conference. We were invited as representatives from the start-up community and were presenting on our approach to gamifying exercise in order to create a positive and sustainable change in an individual’s life. The conference’s core focus is around academia so it was a great opportunity for us to present to a new and different audience, getting feedback from people at the cutting-edge of research in this area.
Our lecturer Daniel Hulme was also attending and on the last day I had the opportunity to join him on a panel alongside two leading doctors in this field to discuss the use of medical technology to monitor patients outside of hospital. It was a light-hearted discussion tackling some of the prominent issues in the space including the age-old argument around data privacy. It was particularly interesting to hear some original points of view and I certainly learnt a lot. I can’t think of another place where an undergraduate student would have an opportunity to present alongside their lecturer and it’s a really good example of the unique culture at Pearson College London.
Having never presented at a conference before we were both nervous and a little unsure of what to expect, however the whole experience was extremely gratifying. There were many questions and some of them tricky, but we had good fun interacting with the audience, something we had previously both found a little daunting. Ultimately we learnt a lot and through all the various discussions we had over the course of the conference it was great to look back on everything we have achieved as well as looking forward to the exciting opportunities ahead.
Aside from a huge amount of learning we made some great contacts (and friends) who we hope to work with over the coming months so all in all it was a really exciting experience. Since getting back we’ve been extremely busy with planning for the summer and we can’t wait to push forward with some new ideas!
As always, we will make sure we keep you up to date with our progress!
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