People Innovation Excellence


Learning Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of this course, students are expected to be able to recognize the management processes in setting up a new business; comprehend the risks and challenges in setting up a business venture; and develop a business model and strategy.


This course provides experiential learning on what it is like to actually start a company. This class is not about how to write a business plan. It is not an exercise on how smart students are in a classroom, or how well students use the research library. The result is not a PowerPoint slide deck for a VC presentation. Instead, students will get directly involved by talking to customers, partners, and competitors, as they encounter the chaos and uncertainty of how a startup works. Students will work in teams to learn how to turn a creative idea into a real company. They will learn how to use a business model canvas to brainstorm each part of a company and customer development approach to get out of the classroom to see whether anyone other than them would want/use their product. Finally, students will see how agile development can help them rapidly iterate their product to build something customers will use and buy. Each week will be a new adventure as students test each part of their business model and then share the hard-earned knowledge with the rest of the class. Working with their team, they will encounter issues on how to build and work with a team and we will help them understand how to build and manage a startup team.

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