Remember the “debate?” The art of constructing and carrying out an argument. I find myself seeking those out more and more recently and I finally realize why. During another car ride this weekend it struck me:

If done well, arguing makes us smarter

I have to give credit where credit is due. A few of my friends and start up founders — we will call them Stan, Mary, and Vas — inspired endless discussions about algorithms and biases, and role they have played in making us feel comfortable and “right”, when in fact we are not. Knowing what we know…


Part III: the Future of Ownership

Welcome to the third and final part of the Future of Acceleration series. If you missed Part I: the Future of Work (for Start ups), and Part II: the Future of Mentorship, be sure to check those out as in this last one I will draw on learnings from the first two segments.

At the end, as I wrap up, check out a practical guide about the questions to ask before you set up your own accelerator of the future!:)

So far we learned that the future of work will be fluid, with people coming together periodically in a predictable…


Part II: Future of Mentorship

This post is a part of a three-part series. If you missed “Part I: The Future of Work (for start ups)”, you can access it here.

In Part III, the Future of Ownership, I tie together the trends of decoupling of talent / mentorship / funding and location.

In the first part of this series, I explored the Future of Work for start ups. The conclusion was:

The Future of Work is Fluid: it is a distributed start up workforce, coming together like a heart beat, at a pace that makes people most inspired, engaged and effective.

The point is…


Introduction + Part I: Future of Work

If you sit long enough amongst fellow tech peers at an event in London (or listen to them chit chat on ClubHouse, now that we are not allowed to play in covid), startup founders agree there are three main reasons why they join accelerators: Capital, Network, and Mentorship.

In 2015, in the UK there were 605k new start ups. In 2020, with a healthy push by covid, this number increased to 770k, according to the Center for Entrepreneurs. That’s a 27% increase in 5 years.

With new records for number of start ups in the UK, and more people “wfh”…


What if 2020 wasn’t such a waste after all…

The World Economic Forum called for The Great Reset in 2020. Following a fundamentally changing context for decision-making, we have an opportunity to rectify inadequacies in our systems (from healthcare to finance) with the purpose of making them work for our lives, livelihoods and the planet. For this to work, though, we can’t just shut the machine down, and turn it on again. Or erase everything on that page and started drawing anew. …


We have just completed our two-day European Start Up Showcase for WeWork Labs.

In a day and age, when it feels like we were pushed into the open air midway through a flight (ghm ghm covid) — i.e. when everything had to go online in the span of a few days — I thought to share a few of our lessons.

We are proud we put together a “no bullshit”, “super pro”, “I am definitely tuning in for the next one” event. We most certainly don’t have all the answers and like a lot of people are learning as we…


Why getting through the global pandemic is less about runway and more about resilience.

In my current position, I get a lot of questions from the WeWork Labs founders about “how to cut costs to survive this pandemic?” There is a mix of despair, optimism, fear, hope, and heightened emotions. Each of them is in a unique situation, which requires a bespoke analysis and solution to go through this period.

As someone put it, I have turned into a Chief Resilience Officer.

I find myself being reasonably optimistic about the outcome come the end of this. I am not alone…

Vessela H. Ignatova

Start up advisor, strategy manager, and investor. @WeWork; ex-Uber; ex-VC; ex-TBWA. LBS MBA.

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