Mondays 7:00 – 9:45 PM, SOM 2.107
Final Exam: Final Exam case due on 5:00 PM December 15th
Office Hours: Mon/Wed 3:00 – 3:45 PM or by appointment
Dr. Joseph C. Picken
Phone: (972) 883-4986
Management guru Peter Drucker once observed that: “Unless a new venture develops into a business and makes sure of being ‘managed’, it will not survive no matter how brilliant the entrepreneurial idea, no matter how much money it attracts, no matter how good its products, nor even how great the demand for them.”
Entrepreneurship involves a lot more than finding a new opportunity or coming up with a great idea. Not all entrepreneurs succeed – and few ever walk away rich. Thousands of new opportunities and great ideas are presented to investors every year – but less than 5% of these get a serious look, less than 1% receive professional investment, and of those that are funded, only 15-20% ever generate any serious returns.
On the other hand, there are a lot of small businesses out there – in 2008, only 12% of 29 million US businesses reported more than $2.5 million in revenues; more than 95% were sole proprietorships, and more than 98% employed fewer than 20 people. Of the 5.9 million firms with employees, only 0.4% had more than 500 employees.
Obviously, there is a lot more to entrepreneurship than just starting a company.
This course is about how to build an entrepreneurial company – the challenges and hurdles that must be overcome in order to make the transition from an entrepreneurial startup to an organization capable of sustained and profitable growth…on the way to $50 or $500 million…within a few years. The challenges for the entrepreneur are both organizational (defining strategy, products and marketing, building a management team, acquiring resources, building infrastructures, etc.) and personal (acknowledging personal strengths and limitations and defining an appropriate leadership role). The selection of cases is biased toward technology-based product companies, but the principles are applicable to non-technology-based and service companies as well.
This is not a subject that can easily be captured in a textbook – which may explain why there are none available.
Rather, we will rely on readings, case studies, and guest lectures from current or former CEOs of entrepreneurial companies. Both group and individual assignments will be required, with individual assignments and class participation comprising 35% of the final grade, and group assignments accounting for the remainder.
Upon successful completion of this course, students will:
Understand the challenges and hurdles that must be overcome in building an entrepreneurial company – making the transition from an entrepreneurial startup to an organization capable of sustained and profitable growth.
Understand a set of concepts and theoretical frameworks that can be used to better understand and interpret the processes and challenges encountered in a new and emerging organization.
Demonstrate the ability to apply the concepts, tools and frameworks presented in the readings and lectures to the analysis, interpretation and prioritization of organizational issues presented in case studies.
Demonstrate the ability to develop and communicate appropriate recommendations for action with respect to organizational problems presented in case studies.
REQUIRED COURSE MATERIALS:
G. Kawasaki. 2004. The Art of the Start. Portfolio – the Penguin Group. NY. ISBN 1-59184-056-2 ($26.95)
J. Cornwall. 2010. Bootstrapping. Prentice Hall. NJ. ISBN 0-13-604425-5 ($51.00)
Electronic Readings: Download eJournals (Harvard Business School and other articles) as required. The eJournals are available for download at no charge on the UTD McDermott Library website