Blended Learning

Blended Learning

Market Validation Program – ACETECH

ACETECH is a non-profit organization that leverages the experience and knowledge of successful entrepreneurs to deliver the best training and mentorship for CEOs at every stage in their development (from startup to mentor).  For the past 20 years, CEOs of technology and life sciences companies have joined ACETECH to improve their effectiveness as leaders and learn how to take their companies to the next level.

The Challenge

ACETECH offers a 3 day workshop called Market Validation Program, which is spread over 3 months. It was offered in three different locations at various times in a year. The challenge with the program was two-fold. Firstly, there were not enough instructors to make this a scalable option, and ACETECH needed to find a way to allow the program to reach more entrepreneurs. Secondly, there was a lot of content and participants reported that they did not retain enough information from the workshop to feel confident about their ability to build a business.

The Solution

To address the scalability issue, Spark + Co increased the amount of self-directed learning and created a comprehensive instructor package which allowed ACETECH to certify new trainers. To address the content overload concern, Spark + Co. converted  the 3 day workshop into a 13 week program. Each week had defined activities, which ranged from online modules,  in person workshops, offline activities (such as interviewing customers or practicing their “pitch”) or mentoring. Participants were able to revisit topics that they needed more time on, or skip things that they were confident about. The format also provided the ability to space repetition, which is a proven method for learning.

The original workshop consisted of text heavy sets of PowerPoint slides. Spark + Co developed a more visually appealing cohesive look to the materials and crafted an e-learning friendly option.  Significant new content was sourced by Spark + Co and vetted with the client Subject Matter Expert.


  • Six online modules
  • Refreshed content for three full day workshops (instructor guide, participant guide, powerpoint slides, activities)
  • Fifteen “videos” of the instructor presenting  the onscreen information was the slides
  • Mentoring support materials
  • User guide, including screencasts, for participants
  • End of session surveys for gathering feedback

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