Tshwane Industrial Design Students using our startup ideas platform, Validate

Using the business model canvas to develop your startup ideas

The business model canvas: an entrepreneurial tool created by Alexander Osterwalder to help visualise the elements of a product or business idea. When Elona Ndlovu-Hlatshwayo came across the online startup ideas platform, Validate, she knew that this would be the perfect opportunity for Tshwane University of Technology students to unlock their full creative potential.

Keep reading to find out more about the multi-functional tool and how it could benefit you.

Introducing Elona Ndlovu-Hlatshwayo

Elona Ndlovu

Elona is a seasoned consultant with over 19 years of international experience, working across diverse regions such as Southern Africa, the UK, Canada, and Ireland. She has worked with academic, entrepreneurial and research initiatives in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region, dedicating herself to positive societal change.

Currently, she is a part-time lecturer at Tshwane University of Technology, and Vice President at Bizpreneur Pty Ltd.

Industrial Design students utilise the startup ideas platform

February 2024, Tshwane University of Technology 3rd year Industrial Design students were leveraging the power of Validate, a startup ideas platform that encourages innovative ideas through ideation and the famous Business Model Canvas.

“I had started the 3rd year students on the ideation stage. It’s incredibly rewarding to see them leverage these tools to unlock their full creative potential and pioneer new pathways in design thinking”, said Elona.

“I was curious to know their thoughts on the platform, as they are used to using design thinking in their existing programmes to design solutions for various problems. What was great for me was that, despite their mastery of design thinking, they were very impressed with the platform and its capabilities. They complimented the ability to download their work on pdf and use it in their other work”.

Tshwane Industrial Design Students using our startup ideas platform, Validate

Tips for students and entrepreneurs

Following her experience with the 3rd year Industrial Design students, this is Elona’s top tip for students and aspiring entrepreneurs using Validate for the first time.

“I think [students and entrepreneurs] need to fully engage themselves in the ideation and business model development process and try and make them as practical as possible. This will enhance their business ideation and model development, especially in the South African context”, commented Elona.

“For students, use Validate to supplement traditional business education by providing a hands-on learning experience that complements theoretical knowledge. Aspiring entrepreneurs can use Validate to test their business ideas and develop their entrepreneurial skills in a risk-free environment.”

The startup ideas platform for trainers providers

Validate was more than a student or entrepreneurial tool, according to Elona. It was a platform that could be utilised by many other industries, specifically business professionals, educators, and trainers.

“Individuals already working in business can use the platform to enhance their strategic thinking, decision-making, and leadership skills. [Validate] can be a valuable tool for educators and trainers to enhance their curriculum and training programs, offering a dynamic and engaging learning experience for their students or participants”, said Elona.

“I have used it in the classroom and it is a brilliant platform and support to teaching”.

Thank you to Elona Ndlovu-Hlatshwayo for sharing your teaching experience with Validate.

If you would like to find out more about our startup ideas platform Validate, request your free online demo from our team today. We look forward to working with you.