A Global Learning Environment

Insights on how to hone the products of WSYA winners

Winning teams and participants of the World Summit Youth Award arrived in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on June 15 for the annual winner’s festival. International WSA experts and past WSYA winners interacted with new members of the WSYA winner community during social events between seminars.


The young innovators were inspired by thought leaders such as Dr. Peter A. Bruck, WSA chairman or Cid Torquato, WSA Expert for Brazil and Deputy Secretary of the State Secretariat for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Workshops such as “Knowledge Economy from the perspective of Inclusion” and “Innovation is cool: Growing leaders for non-profit social enterprise,” gave insights on how to hone the products of the WSYA winners.

The community oriented event allowed for networking and mentorship to commence between professionals and future leaders, and the WSA network presented at the event once more the transfer of knowledge and innovation.

The sessions with the WSA network not only provided an interactive exchange of expertise but also an intensive networking process. A line of speakers including Thadeu Luz, CEO of Handtalk, and Sallyann Della Casa, WSA Juror and speaker, attended the event to share insights on their fields of work.  

In his presentation, Thadeu shared his five important truths that every start up founder should know and that he wished to had known when he started his successful business. And of course we do not want to keep them from you:

-          Start-ups are not small companies

-          Customers can make or break a start-up

-          Failure is part of the process

-          If you are lost, run an experiment, they will point you the right way    

-          Passion is the true gift

"A startup is a temporary organization used to search for a repeatable and scalable business model."

Thadeu continued to speak about important considerations any start-up founder should make:

●Make a question (should our website be blue or red?)
●Come up wit a hypothesis (Change the website color to blue will increase sales)
●Define independent variable (website color)
●Define dependent variable (sales)
●Keep everything else the same. If you can't, randomize.
●Keep a control group
●Analyze data

"The impulse to investigate can only be set free if you stop pretending to know answers that you don’t," Thadeu said.

On Monday, Sallyann Della Casa presented her take on pitching. Her workshop helped remind everyone that when pitching, there are certain steps you must take to be successful. Her suggestion was that the quality of a presentation could be broken down into three categories; configuration, offering and experience.

Sallyann’s tips especially influenced the ChatSalud team. A team member stayed up all night to have his presentation reflect Sallyann’s suggestions. When he did his his new and improved in front of the jury they were extremely impressed.

The interaction between Sallyann and the ChatSalud team is just one of many that took place between experts and the WSYA community in Sao Paulo. The event gave everyone the chance to network and share experiences. Being an international conference, this winner’s festival did a great job of encouraging people from different cultures to learn more about their peers.