A week ago, I was assigned to monitor Leaders for A Better Future by my organisation and I joined in this group for one day only, without any foreknowledge of what they were up to. Was adventurous I would say.
A little thing, I prefer to stay away from economy and business administration related things. Having worked at several companies for a couple of years, seen how they worked made me realize it’s actually not my cup of tea, but still I am a professional even though I dislike it. So this conference-ish meeting was going back to my roots.
Let’s talk about them a bit.
Ja Alumni Europe is an umbrella organisation for the European alumnis, their main aim is to help them grow and develop, improve their impact in their societies, encourage young entrepreneurs and startups, help them find resources and creative ideas. Each country either goes with JA Alumni’s name (ie. JA Alumni Czech Republic) or they have their own name (ie. SENT stands for JA Alumni Estonia)
This year Estonia’s SENT is celebrating their 10th anniversary.
On November 20th, all of the participants were divided into 3 groups and our group started off the day with paying a visit to Garage48.
Garage48 is a startup consultant NGO that is based in the centre of Tallinn. At their place, on the first floor, they have their “free room” which is equipped with wireless internet connection and couches, also a spacious kitchen that visitors can use for free. The daily offer is 6 euros for the ones who would like to benefit from this free space. Garage48 also offers monthly/yearly memberships, these members can use the offices and equipment upstairs. Their most important event is called Hackaton. During Hackaton, the participants have to come up with a creative startup idea and make a business plan regarding their idea within 48 hours. At the end of Hackaton, 3 ideas will be chosen among approximately 50 ideas and will be supported by the consultants. Garage48 is well-known with their support to the famous Estonian startups. They also collaborate with other organisations and organise Hackatons in different countries.
After our visit to Garage48, we headed for Kesklinna Noortekeskus for the workshops. During icebreaking, European board members of JA Alumni introduced themselves. Following, each alumni presented their two of “best practices” that they have done during the year and shared their statistics, problems, exchanged ideas with the other alumnis. We finished off the day with one last workshop. The participant countries were divided into groups and each European Board member had 2 to 5 countries. The alumnis discussed their issues with the board members and exchanged creative ideas about their local activities.
So, all in all I’ve had a good and productive day with this alumni group, refreshed my mind about the business stuff and had the chance to observe their way of working. Joyeux anniversaire, SENT. Keep up the good work.