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Monarq Launch Event at SEED SPOT

By Sierra LaDuke

On Friday afternoon, SEED SPOT had the pleasure of housing a “Lunch and Learn,” hosted by the co-founders of an up and coming social media app, Monarq. Their names? Diana Murakhovskaya and Irene Ryabaya- but we’ll just call them Diana and Irene.

These Brooklyn-based ladies traveled to Phoenix to share their mission for developing the language of female friendship. While here, they also gave some advice for other women experiencing the trials and tribulations of starting a business.

Diana and Irene’s wisdom can be broken down into three steps: share your idea, create your own network, and form a mock-up.

  • Step one: Be a blabbermouth.

Every time that you say your idea aloud, you have the chance to further develop it and get feedback from an outside source.

If you talk about your idea, you will gain confidence. Diana and Irene said that they realized Monarq was the right idea when they witnessed eyes lighting up when listening to the plan.

Diana talked about the complexity of bringing an idea to life, “Ideas are so abundant. It’s really about the drive and actually making it happen that’s so difficult.” Irene and Diana agreed that no one should hesitate sharing their idea out of fear of it getting stolen. Unless that 3rd party is willing to devote 18 hours a day to your vision, they won’t take it as far as you will.


2) Step two: People are resources. Use them!

There are so many pieces to the puzzle that makes a start-up. It’s really important to understand that you cannot do this on your own. Irene put it bluntly and eloquently, “Everybody needs each other. There is always a need to collaborate.”

There are tons of networking platforms lurking on the Internet that are invaluable. Though Diana and Irene advise thinking outside the box, and creating your own personal network. You might be surprised at what skills your own family and friends, along with friends of friends, have to contribute. Host a series of dinners and invite individuals who possess the attributes that you lack. Bring a pen and paper to the dinner table and be prepared to form new business relationships.


3) Step three: Put your idea on paper.

Usually, ideas are one thing in our brains and something entirely different when written down. In order to enlist help, it’s important to have visuals that are representative of your plan.

Diana and Irene’s initial depictions of Monarq consisted of stick figures that they proudly sketched themselves. They laughed when recalling bringing their artwork to an app developer. Their first draft may not have been perfect, but it was a necessary step in the right direction.

A developer recommended that Diana and Irene use “Balsamiq” an Internet resource for creating mock-ups in a form that software gurus can recognize.

Even if your idea doesn’t involve much technological creation, forming a virtual representation is an important step toward giving life to your idea.

Whether you have already nailed down a solid business model, or you’re itching to find that “million-dollar idea” keep Diana and Irene’s three-steps in mind. Never underestimate the value of talking, people, or planning.

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Lauren McDanell

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