Leadership

Scaled Founders’ Retreat – Behind the Scenes

12 Jun 2024

‘Attending the SaaSBoomi Scaled Founders event was an incredible experience. It’s unique to find a tribe of entrepreneurs who are at a similar stage as you. The conversations were unfiltered, the support was non-judgmental, and I hope this network lasts forever.’ Richie Khandelwal, Founder – Pricelabs.

16 founders from 12 companies attended the 2nd Scaled Founder’s Retreat that took place at the Four Seasons Bengaluru on the 30th and 31st of May 2024.

I was a bag of mixed emotions when I was given the responsibility of organizing the second Scaled Founders’ Retreat for SaaSBoomi. I was excited but also a little intimidated because we had a fabulous team like Sharat Potharaju, Kishore Natarajan and Avinash Raghava who were curating the program schedule for the retreat and I needed to ensure that we were able to provide the right venue to do justice to their efforts.

The first option was to plan at the same venue as the first retreat and that was more or less the plug-and-play plan until one of the facilitators, Saikiran Krishnamurthy from xto10x brought up some valid points. How much open space is available? Is there natural light? Don’t look at just meeting rooms but places which would encourage better networking, opening up of ideas, and sharing between the members. Thus about a couple of weeks before the retreat the venue was shifted to Four Seasons Bengaluru.

A key piece of learning here was that in a retreat, the venue is one of the biggest contributors to how fruitful a retreat can be. Unfortunately keeping the Bangalore extended summers in mind, outdoor areas were not an option. We didn’t want options which felt like a closed banquet hall or boardroom.

Sharat, Kishore, and Avinash were an absolute inspiration to work with. 5 months into SaaSBoomi and I still get amazed with the amount of time, energy, precision, and passion that volunteers are willing to put in for each of our initiatives and events. Each and every session was curated and planned with precise details and an inspiring lineup of speakers and facilitators. 

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From previous events and after speaking to several founders we understood that a lot of the ‘real’ conversations and bonding happen during the informal gatherings when there is less structure but more opportunities to converse. And we were not disappointed. From impromptu questions led by Shivakumar Ganeshan on ‘what makes you happy’, ‘which are your biggest fears’ to intense conversations revolving around privilege and bringing up children, or how to balance personal life and family, each topic provided some food for thought. One of the thoughts that stood out personally for me was something Sanjay Nayak said: “No benefit of being a pessimist but definitely some benefit of being an optimist…so why not be an optimist?”
The retreat’s success stemmed from the speakers who skillfully guided the scaled founders. These founders generously opened up, sharing their fears, concerns, and thoughts, creating a valuable exchange of ideas with the trust that “whatever happened in the retreat would stay in the retreat.” 

“Scaled cos. retreat was a great cohort of about 15 SaaS companies sharing their learning and struggles with each other. It was conducted such that it created a safe space for founders to share openly and in the process learn from each other.” Anant Choubey, Co-Founder, Capillary Technologies

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I thoroughly enjoyed organizing the Scaled Founders Retreat and I hope I was able to do justice to what the Scaled Founder’s were expecting to see when they came there. Was this the best that could have been organized? Maybe not, because we can always do better but I do know that everyone involved gave their 100% to the retreat and the founder’s also got some great takeaways over the 2 days.

‘Informal one on ones give greater insights than calendarized formal one on ones. 
Business design should be nailed down with thought to Floor and Pillar before even thinking of Org Design and Roof. Look after family, look after self. 
The remaining time all belongs to the business.’ Shree Bhise, Co-founder Bizom

About the author

Neha Arya

Director of Culture & Scaled Founders Community, SaaSBoomi
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