Leadership Lab

Startup burnout is SO yesterday.

My name’s Stacy, and I’m the new Senior Program Coordinator at If we haven’t met yet - hello! I just realized it’s been about a month since I dove into my new role, and it’s about time for me to introduce myself. It’s also the perfect moment to catch you up on Lead with Speed, an inspiring event we hosted a few short days ago in partnership with SoulCycle and the Boston startup community.

We’ve always been inspired by SoulCycle’s commitment to helping people discover their personal strengths, so we were thrilled when we were struck with an opportunity to collaborate. Springing into action, our team recruited leaders from across the Boston startup community to join us for a night on the bike. As we clipped in and soaked up the music, we fell into step as true pack (or peloton in the cycling world!): a sea of leaders, all moving in unison.

A little over a week has gone by since the event, and I’ve had some time to reflect on the experience. The event left me inspired by my new role and the energy of our startup ecosystem, and reinforced a few key leadership lessons that cross from the bike to the office:

We’re all stronger in packs.

The Boston Startup community rides as a pack - we take care of our own. The unique concept for this event and our ecosystem came together almost instantly (like magic!). From SoulCycle providing their space, to healthy food vendors offering up snacks, to the leaders who joined us for the ride, so many people shared their generous support to help us create a truly special experience. Boston is a true community - take advantage of the rich web of connections available to you just because you’re part of it. Almost every night offers a chance to strengthen your network in our city, with events like ECP Boston's Board Game Night OutWistia’s Drunk User Testing,District Hall’s Cafe Nights and more. Never underestimate the power of relationships to help propel you forward.

"The energy and feeling of community reminded me of the talented group of leaders that I've met at, pushing towards our individual goals and supporting each other along the way. " -Allison Churilla, Salsify

Taking care of you = taking care of your team.

Prioritizing your health enables you to be your best self, rippling to impact everyone in your life. Sweating it out helps clear the mind, and that clarity is a gift for you and your team. In the bustle of day to day priorities, it’s all too easy to prioritize our health in dead last. Nearly 80% of Americans don’t get the recommended amount of exercise each week! Instead, consider exercising a part of your job - your body and your mind will thank you. A simple 60-minute sweat session combats burnout and lets you re-center and recharge to push forward.

“We move fast in the startup world and often forget to take a moment to slow down. It's so important to rally together and encourage our teammates to rest, exercise and recover when they need it, to ensure we do our best and most productive work every day. " - Erin Rohr, Metis Communications

Tap into energy reserves to blow through walls.

By the end of a ride, you find yourself pushed to the max, somehow both energized and exhausted. You round the corner and more hill?! What?! I can’t possibly… Yet, somehow, you manage to push through one last leg, one last song. Startup life isn’t so different; on the rollercoaster ride of building a business, we often find ourselves challenged to pull off amazing feats. Running on fumes, we have to pull a rabbit out of a hat - raising a new fundraising round as dollars are running low, recovering from a product misstep, losing a customer and desperately needing new business. There’s always an energy reserve. It’s up to you to mentally believe you can blow through walls.

I’m so glad to be a part of this creative and energetic community. I’m part of the pack now, and am pedaling fast alongside the pace leaders, and I feel like this is where I’m meant to be. It’s gonna be a wild, amazing ride!