Ac­count­ing Pod

Idealog - - IDEALOG / KIWIBANK - ac­count­ing­

Char­tered ac­coun­tants Ju­dith Cam­bridge (right) and XingDong Yan no­ticed busi­ness school grad­u­ates, though well- trained, ap­peared to lack real world knowl­edge of tech­nol­ogy and the Kiwi busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment. That dis­cov­ery was the gen­e­sis of cloud-based tool Ac­count­ing­Pod.

Idea­log: So what kind of ben­e­fits does a startup get from an ac­cel­er­a­tor pro­gramme like this?

Ju­dith Cam­bridge: For us, es­pe­cially com­ing to Welling­ton, the first thing we could see was the new abil­ity to re­ally build out a net­work, which i s so much harder t o do down south [i n Queen­stown], par­tic­u­larly i n Fi nTech.

We had a lot of peo­ple we got to go and talk to about what was hap­pen­ing in the busi­ness ed­u­ca­tion space, so for us, that was an amaz­ing net­work­ing op­por­tu­nity. It was like be­ing taken on a cu­rated jour­ney to re­ally prove your think­ing, the cus­tomer prob­lem, the so­lu­tion fit, and whether the busi­ness could be re­peat­able and scal­able to re­ally find suc­cess glob­ally. There’s a re­ally high bar to be able to do that, but we had won­der­ful men­tors and met all sorts of peo­ple that have re­ally helped us de­fine the essence of Ac­count­ing­Pod and the di­rec­tion we need to go in.

You’d done a lot of re­search be­fore com­ing to the ac­cel­er­a­tor, was there still more to learn? What was a key take­away for you?

We've re­ally learnt how to see through the lens of a lot of dif­fer­ent peo­ple and dis­cern what is right for the com­pany. In an ac­cel­er­a­tor like this you're faced with a lot of ideas and the skill is to find your way through that and make the best de­ci­sions for your com­pany. And build­ing the re­silience that you do go­ing through that process.

Re­silience? So you're talk­ing about re­silience in the face of re­jec­tion?

Yes. That hap­pened many times. Be­cause some­times the per­son you’re talk­ing to who says ‘no’ has a par­tic­u­lar need that you haven’t ad­dressed, so it's un­der­stand­ing where they're com­ing from and think­ing, ‘well, maybe we just haven't com­mu­ni­cated our vi­sion prop­erly’. It’s learn­ing from that and be­ing able to re­ally home in and clearly com­mu­ni­cate the Ac­count­ing­Pod mis­sion.

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