The magic key to getting results at your company is through inspired employees, said Stephen Moore of Culture Booster, a company that aims to improve work culture and increase engagement. After graduating from the Fall 2020 BETA Cohort, he’s ready to take his startup to the next level.
Following 17 years in the retail automotive industry, working in engagement and leadership development, Moore had a revelation: there had to be a better way to reach people.
“I wanted to leverage the tools and strategies that I gained along the way, and put it all in an online platform,” he said of the idea for Culture Booster, which started from his upbringing.
Having gone through foster homes with his brother in his childhood, Moore was no stranger to unkind environments. When they were adopted into a loving home, he got to see the “contrast of healthy and unhealthy life.”
Fast forward to his working years, and he discovered a similar dichotomy. “Like in life, there are healthy cultures and unhealthy environments in the workplace,” Moore said. “Our ultimate goal is to change the world through healthy environments.”
What started as a request for proposal (RFP) for a dealer group in 2019 has grown into a blossoming B2B software and service platform. The software aims to help organizations monitor their engagement levels and drive results.
Moore described his team as “neutral fact finders” that point companies to results that come from evidence-based strategies.
“A lot of companies might give you a banner that says ‘Top Places to Work,’ but they’re not as focused on transforming culture,” he said. “That’s our mission.”
Right now, they’re focusing on the customer experience and building slowly. “It’s like building an oak tree, it takes time,” Moore said. The main focus is to create a product that customers love and gets high retention rates. “It’s a marathon, not a sprint.”
After participating in the Fall 2020 BETA Cohort alongside 13 other companies, Moore said being a part of that community was one of the best parts.
“There’s a richness of experience in that there’s no competitive dynamic,” he said. “[You’re] able to be vulnerable with each other, sharing in the low points and celebrating the high points.”
The BETA Cohort was recommended to Moore by an investor, and described as a “micro look” into the process of building your startup. “Every single session was applicable,” he added. “If it wasn’t right away, it was later down the road.”
Since Culture Booster is building a B2B, enterprise-level software, the traction looks a little different, Moore said. The biggest “win” from their five months with BETA was being able to bring on a developer who was formerly with PayPal.
“Based on being in the community, we were able to build our tiny but mighty team and help get some more velocity,” he said. The next step is to launch a Kickstarter and raise.
In terms of funding, Moore expressed gratitude that the BETA program explains all of the options and lets founders decide what path is best for them — whether it be bootstrapping or raising venture capital.
“They explain angel, pre-seed, and all of those things, which helps you walk into any of those options with more understanding,” he said.
Moore also mentioned the speakers, timely advice from both the BETA Entrepreneur in Residence Cihan Behlivan and others, and support from the community as key benefits his team enjoyed from the Cohort.
“It was just the greatest experience,” he said.
Applications for the Spring 2020 BETA Cohort have closed, but stay tuned for our Spring Showcase event on April 15!
BETA is a 501(c)(3) organization that develops Minnesota’s next generation of business leaders by inspiring and educating first-time founders. The BETA Group nurtures startups and small businesses with great scalability potential, so that they can grow to become our next Fortune 100s. Learn more.