By Bibi-Aisha Wadvalla

“A great idea is worthless without execution.” This is an oft-repeated statement amongst entrepreneurs, but one that took on deeper meaning during this journey. We at Health Equity Media Lab entered the programme with a grand vision of what we wanted to achieve, but quickly realised we need to be extremely specific about the steps we have to take.

We could see the bigger picture, but through rose-tinted glasses that prevented us from focusing on the finer business details. Jamlab was instrumental in helping us craft a clear strategy.  

As the only startup still in the ideation phase, we initially felt like outsiders looking on with awe at what the other teams had accomplished. Learning from the other teams was inspiring, but also slightly intimidating. Jamlab (or rather, Phillip Mogodi, Accelerator Manager) gave us the confidence to embrace our expertise and redefine how we presented our product. 

With both of us founders having demanding full-time jobs, we indirectly viewed it as a voluntary passion project, instead of a business venture. Going through the weekly exercises, combined with Phil’s guidance, changed that. We now know with certainty that we have an idea that can be successfully implemented, and we are determined to do so with clear business minds.  

The accelerator programme immediately helped us pivot our idea from being journalism centred to information centred, refine our market strategy and develop a plan that will get us from ideation to implementation. We’ve learned how to think like entrepreneurs, to be more business savvy, but more pertinently, to be bolder, more assertive, and to take up space.

We know that we have a viable market product that can gain traction in the femtech space, but we also know we need to build on the momentum of Jamlab to push forward to apply for seed funding and to launch.

But we’re jumping ahead again. The clearly defined next step is to create a pilot product within a feasible timeframe. We can’t wait to get started. 

The JamLab Accelerator is a six-month hothouse programme for journalism and media innovators. It is based at Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct in the heart of Johannesburg.

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Health Equity Media Lab: Making access to health information more equitable


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