Acceleration

Maze X startup accelerator – Week 4

Xavier Jombart, Head of Change Management at BNP Paribas, Mursal Hedayat and Guillemette Dejean, Co-Founders of Chatterbox and Fabrice Segui, CEO of BNP Paribas Portugal.

Goals: kick-off corporate pilot with Chatterbox and BNP Paribas and the secret ingredients of managing people and growth.

At MAZE, we believe that corporate pilot testing with impact startups is one of the most effective ways to push the impact revolution forward. At MAZE, we know that the movement of social and environmental change cannot afford to exist away from mainstream capital. Having the corporates on board is an essential step towards solving the most pressing social and environmental challenges.

 

 

Corporate Pilot Testing with Chatterbox and BNP Paribas

On week 4, Chatterbox met with one of our partners, BNP Paribas, to kick-off their pilot to improve the language learning experience of the corporate middle-management teams. BNP Paribas is Europe’s leading provider of banking and financial services currently present in 72 countries. This dimension requires that managers know how to speak various languages and adapt to very diverse cultures. Chatterbox is a smart online language learning service for professionals powered by refugees that uniquely combines AI-powered self-study courses with regular practice alongside algorithmically matched native language coaches from the refugee community.

BNP Paribas current language learning solution faces the following challenges: low engagement rates, drop-outs and slow-paced learning. On the 6-month after the acceleration period at Maze X, Chatterbox will be testing their solution for 6-months with BNP Paribas management teams to understand if it can be a good substitute or complement to the existing solution. ‘We’re excited to begin working with BNP Paribas as a CSR-aligned language service provider and show them what our language learning platform can do.’ said Mursal Hedayat, Co-Founder and CEO of Chatterbox.

On the next couple of weeks, Chatterbox will be interviewing the users of the existing solution to understand their main challenges. With this information, Chatterbox will be better equipped to know how they can customise their solution to serve the challenges of the corporate better.

 

 

Breakfast with Alexandra Monteiro from Outsystems

To close the week, the founders met Alexandra Monteiro, VP of People at Outsystems, one of the Portuguese tech unicorns. When Alexandra joined Outsystems, there were about 90 employees. Today there are more than 1000. Outsystems has a reputation for being an extraordinary place to work. Last week, the startups got to ask why. Here are some of the learnings we took with us.

Breakfast with Alexandra Monteiro, VP of People at Outsystems, at Maze X the startup accelerator

Motivation means different things to different people, but what takes us out of bed every morning to got to work can be categorised into four buckets:

  1. Purpose when your job allows you to solve a problem in the world you care about
  2. Opportunity for growth when you feel you are allowed to gain skills and networks that benefit your aspired career path
  3. Culture when the people you work with share your values, beliefs and accepted behaviours
  4. Recognition when you receive praise from society and your peers (qualitative) and/or you are compensated for your work (quantitative)

It is crucial to ensure the drivers of each employee are identified, monitored and imprinted in each stage of the employee life-cycle.

The impact revolution will require the support of corporates and startups that are fully dedicated to developing innovative and impactful solutions. This requires managing teams that are open to bring innovation inside its organisations and nurture this impact mindset. We are thrilled to see so many people on this journey with us.

 

Featured photo, from left to right: Xavier Jombart, Head of Change Management at BNP Paribas, Mursal Hedayat and Guillemette Dejean, Co-Founders of Chatterbox and Fabrice Segui, CEO of BNP Paribas Portugal.

Maze X was conceived and initiated by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, the Edmond de Rothschild Foundations and MAZE, with the law firm PLMJ joining as a founding corporate member and BNP Paribas and Casa do Impacto as partners.

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