While there is no set formula for building a great company, basic principles and general patterns are manifested in the most successful start-ups.
With over a century and a half of venture capital experience and many more years of practice in entrepreneurship, the teaching team and guest lecturers for this student initiated course cover the fundamentals for building a successful company.
1. Iterating Your Product and Market Strategy
Greg Ennis and Sanjay Dholakia discuss the keys to iterating to success in a startup and gives examples from Crowd Factory of the challenges in creating a successful market strategy and getting the most from your customers.
2. Funding Your Startup
Howard Hartenbaum from August Capital discusses different types of funding sources, different types of investors and how to approach them, what VCs look for in companies, and his experiences from being an IT investor and entrepreneur.
3. Making the Team Work: Executives, Board, and Partners
How do we create a winning culture? Harrison Miller, Managing Director at Summit Partners, and Nick Mehta, CEO of LiveOffice Inc., discuss the keys to building a great team and company culture.
4. Paying Attention to Details: It’s All in the Details
Gilman Louie, a partner at Alsop Louie Partners, discusses decision making, which details matter when starting and growing a business, and venture capital conventional wisdom.
5. Taking it to the Next Level
Rethinking organizations, product, and sales. Mark Leslie, partner at Leslie Ventures, talks about running a company and how to make it successful after it has been started.
6. Doubling Down on Success: Go International or Get Acquired?
Bill Draper talks about his experiences as a venture capitalist, what he looks for in an entrepreneur, how Silicon Valley has changed over 40 years, and gives advice to future entrepreneurs.
7. Entrepreneurship Through the Lens of Venture Capital | Course Introduction
Bill Coleman, Tom Kosnik, and David Hornik discuss their experiences working in Silicon Valley and share several lessons they have learned over the years.
8. Entrepreneurship Through the Lens of Venture Capital | Starting
Steve Vassallo shares his experiences as a reformed entrepreneur. He covers steps for getting started: the problem (i.e. opportunity), solution, team, and motivation.
9. Entrepreneurship Through the Lens of Venture Capital | Seed Fund
Jeff Clavier and John Lee discuss how newly formed companies in the seed stage can go about getting funding. They explain the similarities and differences between angel investors, venture capitalists, and incubators.