Praxis is a venture-building ecosystem with a redemptive imagination, supporting founders, funders, and innovators motivated by their faith to address the major issues of our time. Learn more about what we mean by redemptive here. Our ecosystem began with a single Accelerator program to support faith-motivated founders in 2010, and has grown to support over 200 ventures across 43 countries. We lead several programs, develop content and frameworks to broadly support entrepreneurs, and have a long-term focused community that works to build redemptive ventures together.
If you’re currently leading a city-based ecosystem, you understand that hosting gatherings and experiences for entrepreneurs is incredibly meaningful but hard work. Hosting a Lab will support you in creating a venture-building ecosystem in your city, but it will take dedication and a lot of time to organize. It’s important that you consider all of the factors in hosting a Lab before you take on the commitment.
A Lab is a 3-day, 2-night venture development event to support and form Christian entrepreneurs. It is hosted by a Labs Team at an offsite location and includes a small group of humble and ambitious Christian founders. Local mentors with senior leadership experience are invited into a single-day mentoring experience, featuring plenary interviews, group discussions, and one-on-ones with founders. Across the gathering, founders are introduced to the Redemptive Frame, share vision presentations, discuss the content of the Praxis Redemptive Playbooks, and synthesize their learnings for personal and venture application. Lab Teams are encouraged to customize their experience as either a Nonprofit Lab or Business Lab for sector-specific application of the redemptive framework.
Praxis looks to partner with place-minded builders who have a passion to see redemptive entrepreneurship advanced in their context. Each location should have a team of 2 people who are trained and work together to run Labs. We look for:
Labs are not a fit for individuals:
While we encourage anyone interested in hosting a Lab to apply for a license, it is important to evaluate if you and your community are resourced appropriately and ready to commit to hosting a Lab.
Here are some questions to consider:
Labs are designed by Praxis, but independently hosted by the local Labs Team. The Labs Team is responsible for the costs involved with running a Lab. The good news is Praxis has done several things to help:
The cost to run a Lab may vary greatly based on your location and the decisions you make as a team. We encourage Labs Teams to do research on the following to develop an estimated budget:
There are 3 groups of people involved with the Lab: The Labs Team that runs the event, Founders who are going through the Lab, and Mentors.
During the Labs Team Training, the local Labs Team gets several tools to empower them to recruit and invite founders and mentors to their Lab. Here are some general guidelines for each.
Labs are meant to serve Founders:
Labs seek to find Mentors:
The Mentor experience is designed to be able to engage even the most busy people for a concise yet impactful experience. Mentors just join the Lab for Day 2 from 8am - 8pm, so they do not have to do an overnight.
Additionally, there is no commitment for Mentors to carry on relationships after a Lab. The experience is designed for organic relationships to begin that could potentially carry on, but there is no expectation or obligation to do so. We simply ask that Mentors will close the loop on anything that was discussed with Founders during the event (ex: a Mentor tells a Founder they could introduce them to someone).
Labs are designed by Praxis but hosted locally by a Labs Team who have gone through the Labs Team Training. As part of the training, the Labs Team submits an implementation plan. Upon approval, they are granted a Labs License.
The Labs License allows the Team to host Labs in their location for 1 year. Locations are typically at the city level (i.e. Austin, TX; Nairobi, Kenya). Teams commit to a minimum of 1 Lab during the year, but can host as many as they would like.
In the months leading up to the License ending, the Praxis team meets with Labs Team to discuss renewal.
Licenses are free of cost to the Labs Team.
To host, you'll first need to complete Labs Team Training and be granted a Labs License. Labs Team Training sessions are published here. Those interested should submit an Interest Form and let us know which sessions you're available to join. Labs Teams are invited to the trainings on a rolling basis until seats are full.
Please share your interest in the next Labs training through this interest form.
5:30PM Founder Arrivals & Check-In
6:00PM Welcome, Dinner, and Introductions
7:30PM Personal Story Sharing
8:00AM Breakfast & Mentor Arrivals
8:30AM Welcome & Introductions
9:45AM Venture Pitches
10:30AM Strategy Interview & Discussion
11:30AM Operations Interview & Discussion
1:30PM Founder : Mentor 1:1s (4 sessions)
4:30PM Break & Happy Hour
7:30PM Mentor Thank Yous & Departures
8:00PM Founder Social Time
9:00AM Leadership Session
10:15AM Reflection & Synthesis
11:00AM Founder Departures