PETALING JAYA: Given the long-standing emphasis on qualification as a prerequisite to career, Singapore-based startup Tigerhall seeks to disrupt the conventional approach to education.
“Ultimately, what we want to do is to replace universities, especially business schools,” said its CEO Nellie Wartoft (pix).
She elaborated that there is a gap between education and what is required in the job market.
“If you take a marketing degree today and go to the head of marketing at Grab, it is not going to be how Grab does marketing and this huge divide is the one that we want to close,” she said, adding that the interview candidates didn’t even know how to sell and manage a team.
And here comes how Tigerhall was established as a mean to get people who know the most in a particular field to share their knowledge.
“We started by asking some of my clients, the head of marketing for Grab and managing director at Google, if they would mind speaking in front of 40 people.”
“After the first session, we received enquiries whether the same could be done with experts from different fields such as digital marketing and investment banking. From there on we raised funding to develop a platform around it,” she said.
Tigerhall, as a knowledge sharing startup, does not operate solely online, Wartoft stressed.
“It offers articles and podcast by the best experts in the field on its mobile app with content curated specifically towards the users’ life goals, be it to be a better leader, to close every deal or to live a healthy life.”
Tigerhall also offers subscribers to attend workshops, to share a meal or even a one-to-one mentoring session with the experts.
“Within this ecosystem, users can type in any kind of goal that you have and we bring all those experts on the go in a convenient format, as you can access it through your phone, or you can listen, read and meet them in person.”
Overall, Wartoft sees Tigerhall as an agent of change on how people approach learning and their views on education.
“We need to split between education and learning, as a lot of people confuse the two.”
“Education is when a person starts a programme to acquire a degree or a certificate which might require an exam or test. Meanwhile, learning happens when a person acquires new knowledge. Sometimes these two happen simultaneously, for example, if you have a good educational programme that has a test.”
In her view, learning needs to be constant and very agile depending on a person’s goal.
“You should be able to shift your learning plan and get content and relevant experts to help you with the new goal you have in mind.”
“This shift has already started as the large tech giants in the US such as Facebook, Google and Amazon have stated that they do not require university degrees anymore.”
Speaking of the US$1.8 million (RM7.5 million) seed funding secured in March 2019, Wartoft shared that the fund will be used towards product development as well as its expansion into Malaysia and India.