Towards Rural Inclusive Growth and Economic Resilience (TRIGGER) II – Component IV, Startups and Entrepreneurship Promotion project funded by BMZ and implemented by GIZ through the consortium of PEM CONSULT/ ICON/CEFE Intl aims at strengthening economic resilience of Micro, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs) including smallholder farmers, young and female entrepreneurs in Tajikistan. Starting in August, the project began implementation of an incubation program that will help young startups launch a business from the idea to the first sales. This incubation program will be conducted by the project partner – the Business School team. During the interview, the Director of the school, Jahongir Rajabov, told us about the incubation program and what the participants would get from it.
Could you please tell us what preceded the incubation program?
Tajik StartUps program implemented by TRIGGER II was launched in March and we started it with online trainings for young people who want to do entrepreneurship. Then, we selected 20 people who took part in our Boot Camps. Boot Camps or startup camps were conducted outside the city for three days, after which we launched this incubation program.
What topics will you present to the participants of the incubation program?
The value of the whole program is that it is developed on the basis of CEFE Intl modules. Why do I like this program? Because the teaching methods and information delivery approach is fundamentally different from those used by other programs. Why?
Because we make the participants to think.
The main difference between the CEFE Intl and other programs methodology is that using CEFE Intl approach we transfer information in a different way. We convey information to the participant through various cases, cognitive games, so that the person, the participant himself summarizes and get the necessary information. How? We do not give lectures, we do not conduct regular trainings, we give a case, give a situation, present a problem and the participants will have to solve it.
The incubation program will last for three months. The first month will be trainings based on six main modules:
- Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship
- Business modeling
- Pitch and how to protect/present your business plan.
What method would you recommend for a successful launch of a startup idea?
I’d advise young people not to be afraid to start, and if you start and you fail, it is okay, since you will have a certain experience, after which you will get a list of lessons learned and have a chance to start all over again. If you are afraid and just plan, plan all the time not deciding to start, you will slow down and stand still at the same place. The main thing is to start, and you will succeed, maybe not for the first time, maybe for the second time, or the third time.
What would be your advice for the participants of incubation program, what to pay attention to, what to avoid?
The main thing you should pay attention to – is details. The whole methodology, the whole content is developed in a way and aimed at ensuring that you get the essence of a certain topic yourself.
After the training session, participants will receive mentoring support, they can receive advice on their business projects, ideas and launching their business.
Our participants have begun their journey towards achieving their dreams, we wish them the best of luck.