In this class, students will learn and apply techniques and methods to discover, evaluate and realize innovative business ideas. They are guided step-by-step through the process of developing an initially rough idea into a sound business concept. Startup-teams will be build during kick-off, followed by an idea generation/opportunity recognition phase in order to discover their common business idea. This idea will be pursuit over the semester - supported not only by the lecturers but also by experienced external mentors from the field of entrepreneurship (founders, investors). At the end of the term, the students' start-up-teams will have the opportunity to present their business concepts in front of potential investors and other experts, both during the course DemoDay, as well as at the E&I Touchdown.
After completing this course students will know how to:
- ...search, recognize and assess business opportunities
- ...enrich business ideas by applying appropriate methods and tools
- ...identify customers and their needs
- ...analyze and evaluate the ecosystem around the business idea
- ...develop profitable and sustainable business models
- ...apply creativity techniques throughout the whole process of business development.
Furthermore, students will acquire relevant complementary skills:
- manage several different stakeholders at once
- structure an innovative, fuzzy project and deal with uncertainty
- manage different ways to arrive at a decision
- summarizing the most important outcomes in a pitch-book
- work efficiently in interdisciplinary teams through recognizing and incorporating individual strengths of each team member
- cope with different work styles, opinions and perspectives
- complementing the team by actively searching for external support to outweigh weaknesses within the core team
- engage in lively discussions and interactive workshops
- structure complex data (project outcomes)
- present project outcomes in different environments and for different target groups (e.g., experts, team members)
In order to successfully pass this course, your absence is limited to 20% of our appointments. Furthermore, the full-time presence at the kick-off day(s) and the final pitch is obligatory!
The course is built around several coaching sessions and workshops, which are structured to be interactive and combine several teaching methods, eg. teamwork, open discussions, individual team coaching, and coaching by external mentors. All sessions will be delivered 100% online via MS Teams, with possible exceptions for the individual team coaching and the DemoDay on December 17th (final presentation of your work in front of a jury). The students will receive an invitation link to join an MS Teams group where all the course exchanges will take place.
During the kick-off session, the basic principles of entrepreneurship, business model design, opportunity recognition and tools to be employed during the semester will be presented and discussed.
The students will be supported in the further development of their ideas by lecturers and external mentors. Regular presentations of results are scheduled. The results of the start-up planning process will be summarized in a pitch book.
The final grade of the course will depend on
- Pitch-deck small (10%)
- Pitch-deck medium (20%)
- Pitch-deck large (30%)
- Participation in class, coaching, and Touchdown (30%)
- Reflection paper (10%)
In order to pass the class, all of these performance indicators have to be positive!
The following grading scale applies:
Students are also requested to rate their peers at the same day when submitting the final deliverable (large pitch deck). Whereas the peer review is not part of the official deliverables and grading scheme, it can influence the final grade if the student is in between two grades. In the peer rating, you each divide 100 points among the team members (including yourself). Please let the share of point reflect the contribution and work of your team peers during the semester. This peer rating is confidential, no one except us will see it. Example: 100 points: Student A (30 points), Student B (30 points), Student C (20 points), Student D (20 points).
Students are provided with a compendium of articles, handbooks and reading materials during the semester. The compendium will be made available online via firstname.lastname@example.org.