Photo credit - Karl Aherne, Wayra Director and chief audience heckler.
Early last year when Trustev was selected to be part of Wayra Dublin, it was one of the first big win for us. For the first time we had presented our big vision for the future of our business and the plans behind it to someone not directly connected with the business and they had seen exactly what we did - a huge industry problem that no-one was solving. One of the greatest resources anyone can have when you're starting up is someone to bounce ideas off that isn't directly connected to the company, in the early days an outside perspective that you trust can really help with decision making. That's at the core of Wayra - question the assumptions to make the teams better.
In Wayra Dublin, Karl and Gavan who run the show are a perfect team (or like your parents, if they do ever fight, its clearly away well away from the kids) and an incredible resource for the teams. They keep you focussed on results without getting in your way. They are there to help, guide and connect you to the resources you need when you need them. The Wayra approach could be described as ‘tough love’ but the reality is a perfect blend of resourcing, guidance and helping create the drive to succeed.
The Wayra office experience itself brilliant, having multiple teams in the one office space helps keep you motivated as you check in at the weekly update meetings. The office’s themselves are so well planned and fitted out that once you set foot inside the door there’s a noticeable attitude change in many of the startups who realise that its time to step up their game. I think the real strength of Wayra is the simple fact that its part of a commercial organisation. Unlike the many great accelerators or incubators connected to academic institutions in Ireland, the resources behind Wayra are all provided on a commercial footing so its doubly important for them to ensure that your startup succeeds so that hopefully one day there’s a return for their investment that can be directed back into future startups. Wayra is a global organisation thats part of one of the largest telecoms companies on the face of planet earth. Their connections run deep into thousands of businesses in dozens of countries creating a network thats there to be tapped into. And the connections are open for business - need some advice on selling to business? Grab a coffee with some senior business sales people in O2. Building a product to help HR? Pop down to hall and convince the HR team at Telefonica to let you trial it with them.
Eventually all good things come to an end and you pack up your desk and move on to make room for the next cohort. But that’s just the beginning. Wayra isn't a short term programme, once you’re in, you’re in for life. You’re part of the worldwide Wayra family, a cog in the Telefonica global organisation and they'll do everything within their power to help you succeed. Since finishing the programme Trustev have had the opportunity to meet, talk and interact with members of the Wayra family across the globe. Anytime we’ve had a big presentation or an announcement to make, our Wayra ‘cousins’ all over the globe have been the first ones out to reach out, share and support the news. Regularly, Karl and Gavan are the first ones to get in touch when they spot an opportunity that might be of interest or advantage to us. Every month, you'll get several emails from Wayra’s global organisation announcing new deals and offers for Wayra companies which can save money and resources when they are tight. You'll also hear about upcoming events that might be of benefit.
For any startup who’s serious about their business, Wayra must be on your agenda. Even the application process itself and the screening days are a fantastic opportunity to test exactly where your business is at.
If you're ready for your startup to take a step up, you can apply here.