Check out the founder-focused sessions happening at TechCrunch Disrupt

How-to at the TechCrunch+ stage

How to Raise First Dollars in a More Difficult Market: The Venture Perspective with Annie Case (Kleiner Perkins) and Sheel Mohnot (Better Tomorrow Ventures): It is clear by now that the venture market has changed this year. This means that founders looking to raise their first capital can’t follow last year’s playbook and expect results. So what do founders need to know, and how can they snag investor attention in a market where the rules are changing?

How to Secure Those Hard to Find Hires with Chris Herd (Firstbase), Kate Ryder (Maven) and Emil Yeargin (Gusto): Hiring isn’t easy even in the best of times. With a tight tech talent market and an increasingly remote-friendly — and therefore globally competitive — corporate landscape, founders have never had more places to hire from and more competitors to measure up against. With the three we’ll go deep on hiring today with an especial focus on hard-to-fill roles.


Here are just two of our 25 roundtable topics. These 30-minute, expert-led discussions encourage in-depth conversation and connection with up to 20 attendees.

My daughter the cyborg: Marrying human to machine is the next great technological frontier, and for Jeremiah Robison, founder of CIONIC, a bionic clothing company revolutionizing human augmentation, his mission is driven by his daughter’s mobility disability. Participants will learn where to begin when innovating at the intersection of human and machine, how to scale a product that’s never existed before and peek into the future of augmented human mobility.

Making venture more accessible: Despite press releases, sound bites and increased awareness surrounding the inequities in venture funding, many barriers remain for women — and POC-led startups seeking financing — and people hoping to work at a VC firm. Record numbers of VCs have expressed intentions to support underrepresented founders, yet VC remains an exclusive insider’s club. Participants will discuss steps for change, the best ways to vet opportunities and provide a playbook for investing in diversity.

Networking opportunities

Tap the app: Disrupt is the perfect place to find and engage with driven, focused people who can help you achieve your specific business needs and goals, and we have the perfect networking tool for you. The TechCrunch event app puts networking in the palm of your hand.

Based on information that you provide during registration, the app can search the attendees list for suitable candidates, make suggestions and send out invitations at your bidding. We’ll open the app weeks before the show begins. Find the people you want to meet and line up your RSVPs in advance.

Prefer your networking ad hoc style? Use the event app to set up meetings on the fly whenever you spot a hot prospect at Disrupt.

Speed networking: Take advantage of a different way to connect with other attendees. When the agenda posts, add the networking breaks to your event app schedule. During Disrupt, you’ll be randomly matched with other attendees for three-minute conversations — based on mutual interest in predetermined topics. It’s a fun way to assess opportunity potential without a big time commitment.

Dinners for 6: A tasty way to meet potential investors, customers or other founders. You’ll have the opportunity to sign up to go out to a local restaurant for dinner with five other Disrupt attendees. Good food and relaxed conversation can lead to great opportunities. Heads up and wallets out: Dinners for 6 is a strictly dutch-treat situation.

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