Thomas E. Eckmann
Gives student entrepreneurs the opportunity to network with the founders/CEOs of companies, explore their entrepreneurial aptitude, and work through the details of their own start-ups. Provides structure, tools, and resources to start of company, and compete in the UW Business Plan Competition. Credit/no-credit only.
The goal of this course is to prepare students for success in the 2013 UW Business Plan Competition (BPC). The scope of the course includes the development of a new venture from idea generation through business planning, funding and startup. Students will learn from assigned reading, class discussions, and guest lectures delivered by some of Seattle’s most accomplished entrepreneurs and subject-matter experts.
Student learning goals
Students will learn: 1. How the Business Plan Competition works including entry requirements, stages of competition, judging criteria, and prizes for winners. 2. How to craft a business plan that makes sense and attracts investors (BPC judges). 3. What it’s like to start a new company and some pitfalls to avoid. 4. What entrepreneurship is like as a career path. 5. How to expand their network of contacts within the entrepreneurial community.
General method of instruction
Class assignments and grading
Reading: 1. Required Reading: The Lean Startup by Eric Ries available in the UW Bookstore. 2. Recommended Reading: The recommended reading packs contain excellent background material that will enhance your knowledge of entrepreneurship and provide useful background information related to business planning. Due to time constraints, it may not be possible to discuss these articles in class. • The class schedule lists nine recommended articles and case studies. These are included in a course pack available from Harvard Business Press (approximate price: $36.00). Click link below to purchase. Complete ENTRE 440-540 Course Pack: http://cb.hbsp.harvard.edu/cb/access/16786202 • Three of the nine recommended articles (listed with an asterisk on the class schedule) are available at no charge through the UW Library’s online subscription to HBR. The remaining six articles are available in an alternate HBR course pack (approximate price: $24.00). Click link below to purchase. Partial ENTRE 440-540 Course Pack: http://cb.hbsp.harvard.edu/cb/access/16786338
Grading ENTRE 440/540 is a 2 credit, Pass/Fail course. Passing performance will be based on the following criteria. Attendance and Class Participation (25%) To receive credit for this course, students must attend at least 8 of the 10 resource nights. A sign-in sheet will be distributed at every class and your signature is required to confirm attendance. Students are also expected to be conversant with the required reading and prepared to participate in class discussions. Business Opportunity Assessment (75%) A Business Opportunity Assessment is a precursor to development of a full business plan. It addresses all the key points of a business plan but at a lower level of detail. Its purpose is to gain an early assessment of an idea’s feasibility and identify major weaknesses and risk factors. A more detailed description of this assignment may be found on Blackboard (“Business Opportunity Assessment Assignment”). Write-ups will be evaluated on the basis of completeness (addressing all questions) and the depth of thought communicated. Students may do this assignment alone or with 1-2 team members. Of course in grading, team submissions will be held to a higher standard of quality and completeness than those submitted by individuals. • Preliminary submission (questions 1-3) due: February 11 • Final written Opportunity Assessment (7 pages maximum): March 18 “AHA!” Emails (optional but encouraged) Students are encouraged to submit a brief email after each class describing their most important take-away or “aha” from the class. What did they learn? Did a particular comment or thought surprise them or open some new avenue of thinking? Are they puzzled by something, or do they have questions? These emails help the instructor communicate with students one-on-one. Students will generally receive a response to their email if it contains a cogent point or important insight. The instructor will also respond to questions or requests for clarification. • Include “AHA email” in the email subject line and send to: Teckmann@UW.edu