Spring 2011 mba 295 f syllalbus rev 3

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Spring 2011 mba 295 f syllalbus rev 3

  1. 1. University of California at Berkeley - Haas School of Business MBA/EWMBA 295F The Customer Development Process in High Tech: Sales, Marketing & Business Development in a StartupInstructor: Steve Blank Time: 6-8pm Room C210Prerequisite(s): Passion, Creativity and ResilienceClass Format: Seminar & Research Project Units of Credit: 2Purpose of the CourseWhy Teach This Class?Business schools teach aspiring executives a variety of courses around the execution ofknown business models, (accounting, organizational behavior, managerial skills,marketing, operations, etc.) In contrast, startups search for a business model. (Or more accurately,startups are a temporary organization designed to search for a scalable and repeatablebusiness model.) There are few courses which teach aspiring entrepreneurs the skills(business models, customer and agile development, design thinking, etc.) to optimizethis search. Many entrepreneurship courses focus on teaching students “how to write abusiness plan.” Others emphasize how to build a product. If you’ve read any of myprevious posts, you know I believe that: 1) a product is just a part of a startup, butunderstanding customers, channel, pricing, etc. are what make it a business, 2)business plans are fine for large companies where there is an existing market, existingproduct and existing customers. In a startup none of these are known. Therefore we developed a class to teach how to think about all the parts ofbuilding a business, not just the product.What’s Different About the Class?This class will introduce management tools for entrepreneurs. We’ll build the classaround the business model / customer development / solution stack. The class will cover Business Model Design as well the four steps of CustomerDevelopment; Customer Discovery - understanding customer problems and needs,Customer Validation -developing a sales model that can be replicated, CustomerCreation - creating and driving end user demand, and Company Building - transitioningthe organization from learning and discovery to a well oiled machine engineered forexecution.Page 1 of 7 Spring 2011 revision 3 Blank
  2. 2. The key points of this class are:1. Get out of the building. Very few technology startups fail for lack of technology. Theyalmost always fail for lack of customers. Yet surprisingly few companies take the basicstep of attempting to learn about their customers (or potential customers) until it is toolate - its just so easy to focus on product and technology instead. True, there are therare products that have literally no market risk; they are all about technology risk (i.e. lifesciences and a "cure for cancer"). For everyone else you need to get some facts toinform and qualify our hypotheses ("fancy word for guesses") about what kind of productcustomers will ultimately buy.2. Theory of market types. Market Types explain why different startups face wildlydifferent challenges and time horizons. There are three fundamental situations thatchange what your company needs to do: creating a new market, bringing a new productto an existing market, and resegmenting an existing market. If youre entering anexisting market, competition comes from the incumbent players. When creating a newmarket, it may take years before you get traction with early customers.3. Finding a market for the product as specified. Customer Development tries is to findthe minimum feature set required to get early customers.4. Phases of product & company growth. Customer Development posits that startups gothrough four stages of growth; Customer Discovery (when youre just trying to figure outif there are any customers who might want your product), Customer Validation (whenyou make your first revenue by selling your early product), Customer Creation (akin to atraditional startup launch,) and Company Building (where you gear up to Cross theChasm and realign management.5. Learning and iterating vs. linear execution. In the early stage of a startup companiesare focused on figuring out which way is up. In a traditional startup, they would probablylaunch their product and company, failing or succeeding spectacularly. Only after amajor, public, and expensive failure would they iterate.6. Premature Execution: An insight of Customer Development is that startups need timespent in a mindset of learning and iterating, before they try to launch. During that time,they can collect facts and change direction in private, without dramatic and publicembarrassment for their founders and investors. This course will challenge your perception of the traditional sales, marketing andbusiness development roles, leave you with a new way to view and organize theseroles, and help you increase the odds of a successful venture.Page 2 of 7 Spring 2011 revision 3 Blank
  3. 3. Requirements The main requirements for this class are passion, energy and resourcefulness.The course also assumes that students have either; experience in bringing a newproduct to market, taken a basic Entrepreneurship course, or have written a businessplan.Method of Instruction:The course will combine lectures, readings, case materials and regular classinvolvement by entrepreneurs and business professionals. Well-prepared andintellectually engaged students are essential for the class to succeed. The readings for this course are principally from the course text: Four Steps tothe Epiphany, articles, book chapters and cases that will be published in an on-lineReader. They are organized as required readings and cases for class discussion alongwith suggested supplemental readings that will deepen your understanding of the class.Method of Evaluation:(1) Four Application Exercises assigned throughout the semester, students will workindividually and independent to analyze Business Model Design, Customer Discovery,Customer Validation and Customer Creation choices companies have made. Studentswill analyze a company’s business model and then look at their customer and markethypothesis, channel and sales strategy, and demand creation activities. Theseexercises will cover understanding early customer needs and matching them withproduct features, how to research product distribution channels, creating a salesroadmap for early customers, and demand creation and chasm-crossing sales plan totransition to mainstream customers. The companies used in these exercises can beknown from direct experience or from independent research efforts.(2) A team-written independent research paper (teams of 4) of approximately 10 pagesin length. This paper puts together all the lessons of customer development by doingprimary research outside the building interviewing founders of a company you selected.The paper analyzes and compares the founders world-view with the lessons learnedfrom the class during the course of the semester.Basis for Final Grade:Students will be graded on the independent research project (50% of final grade),completion and quality of effort related to the Application Exercises (25% of final grade),Page 3 of 7 Spring 2011 revision 3 Blank
  4. 4. and class attendance and participation (25% of final grade).InstructorSteve Blank is a retired serial entrepreneur and private investor. Since 1978 Steve hasbeen a founder of or participant in eight Silicon Valley startups including Zilog andMIPS, two semiconductor startups; Ardent, a supercomputer company; ConvergentTechnologies a workstation company; SuperMac, an Apple peripheral supplier; RocketScience, a video game company, and E.piphany; an enterprise software company.These startups resulted in five IPOs, and three very deep craters. Steves operationalroles have spanned CEO to VP of Marketing.Steve has been lecturing at the Haas School at U.C. Berkeley in the entrepreneurshipprogram since 2002, Columbia Business School since 2005, and Stanford’s School ofEngineering since 2006. He is a Trustee at U.C. Santa Cruz. Currently, Steve serveson the boards of Audubon California and the California League of Conservation Voters.He was appointed to the California Coastal Commission by Governor Schwarzeneggerin February 2007.Office hours: By appointmentEmail: sblank@kandsranch.comTwitter: sgblankBlog: www.steveblank.comPage 4 of 7 Spring 2011 revision 3 Blank
  5. 5. Class 1 Thursday, Jan 20th Introduction to the Course Learning Objectives: (1) Course organization (2) Barriers to Entrepreneurship (3) Entrepreneurship Explosion, (4) Entrepreneurship as a Management Science. Reading: Do Business Plans Make No Difference In The Real World? Class 2 Thursday, Jan 27th -Part 1 Business Model Design Learning Objectives: (1) Business Models versus Business Plans (2) Business Model Design Reading: Osterwalder, Business Model Generation, http://www.businessmodelgeneration.com/downloads.php http://www.businessmodelalchemist.com/ Class 3 Thursday, Feb 3rd- Part 2 Business Model Design Learning Objectives: (1) Business Models versus Business Plans (2) Business Model Design Reading: Osterwalder, Business Model Generation http://www.businessmodelgeneration.com/downloads.php http://www.businessmodelalchemist.com/ FEB 10TH NO CLASS Class 4 Thursday, Feb 17th The Customer Development Process Learning Objectives: (1) Product Development (2) Customer Development. (3) Business Model / Customer Development / Agile Development Stack Reading: Boyd – OODA Loop PowerPoint slides Blank – Four Steps to the E.piphany – Chapter 2 Supplemental Fast Company – The Strategy of a Fighter pilot Reading McGrath & MacMillan – Entrepreneurial Mindset – Chapter 10 pages 231-245Assignment: Application Exercise 1, Business Model due today Class 5 Thursday, Feb 24th The Customer Development Model: Customer Discovery -Part 1 Learning Objectives: (1) Board/Team Buy-in (2) Startup Hypothesis (3) Testing the Problem and Product Concept Reading Blank – Four Steps to the E.piphany – Chapter 3 Supplemental Scan the Webvan source materials. The S-1, 10Q’s. 8K’s, etc. Reading: McGrath & MacMillan – Discovery-Driven Planning McGrath & MacMillan – Entrepreneurial Mindset – Chapter 10 pages 256-261 Red Herring – Can Webvan Deliver? Case: WebVan Class 6 Thursday, March 3rd The Customer Development Model: Customer Discovery - Part 2 Learning Objectives: (1) Customer Development Team (2) Customer Needs versus product features (3) Understanding the customer. Reading: Christensen – Discovering What Has Already Been DiscoveredPage 5 of 7 Spring 2011 revision 3 Blank
  6. 6. Note on Lead User Research Case: IMVU Class 7 Thursday, March 10th The Customer Development Model: Customer Validation - Part 1 Learning Objectives: (1) Customer Validation team (2) Value Proposition (3) Getting Ready to Sell Reading: Blank – Four Steps to the E.piphany – Chapter 4 Supplemental Heiman & Sanchez – The New Strategic Selling – Chap 2 Strategy & Tactics Reading Heiman & Sanchez – The New Strategic Selling – Chap 5 Buying Influences Case: Motive Assignment: Application Exercise 2, Customer Discovery due today Class 8 Thursday, March 17h The Customer Development Model: Customer Validation - Part 2 Learning Objectives: (1) Earlyvangelists (2) Sales to early customers (3) Product and company positioning (4 ) testing the financial model Reading: Bosworth – Solution Selling – Strategy 1 & 4 - Three levels of Buyer Needs, Solution Selling Tools Moore – Positioning Your Product Case: E Ink & E Ink 2005 March 24th NO CLASS Class 9 Thursday, March 31st Vertical Markets/The Three Types of Startups Learning Objectives: (1) Market risk vs. Invention Risk (2) Vertical Markets (3) Market types and startup goals Reading: Blank – Four Steps to the E.piphany – Chapter 1 Supplemental Clayton Christensen - Innovators Solution – pages 43-51 Reading Clayton Christensen - Six Keys to Creating New Growth Businesses Case: In & Out Burger Class 10 Thursday, April 7th The Customer Development Model: Customer Creation - Part 1 Learning Objectives: (1) Customer Creation versus marketing communications (2) the four building blocks of Customer Creation (3) the role of “branding” Reading: Blank – Four Steps to the E.piphany – Chapter 5 Holt - Brands & Branding Assignment: Application Exercise 3, Customer Validation due today Case: HP KittyhawkPage 6 of 7 Spring 2011 revision 3 Blank
  7. 7. Class 11 Thursday, April 14th The Customer Development Model: Customer Creation - Part 2 Learning Objectives: (1) Company and Product Launch (2) Company and Product Positioning (3) Demand Creation Reading: McGrath & MacMillan – Entrepreneurial Mindset – Chapter 9 pages 197-215 Schuler - Lanchester Background Case: Wildfire A-D Class 12 Thursday, April 21st The Customer Development Model: Company Building - Part 1 Learning Objectives: (1) Building a mainstream customer base by Market Type Reading: Moore – Breaking into the Mainstream Moore - Target Markets Blank – Four Steps to the E.piphany – Chapter 6 Case: Peppers & Rogers Assignment: Application Exercise 4, Customer Creation due today Class 13 Thursday, April 28th The Customer Development Model: Company Building - Part 2 Learning Objectives: (1) Culture wars (2) Mission-centric culture (3) Fast-response departments (4) Growing the company Reading: Blank – Four Steps to the E.piphany – Chapter 6 Supplemental U.S. Marine Corps – Warfighting Manual – Pages 46-51 (Leadership/Training,) Reading Pages 63-67 (Philosophy of Command), Pages 70-75 (Mission Tactics/Intent/Focus) Boyd – Patterns of Conflicts – pages 75-80, 128-135 Bhide – Building the Self Sustaining FirmDeliverables (1) February 27th Application Exercise Papers Due – Business Model Design (2) March 10th Application Exercise Papers Due: Customer Discovery (3) April 7th Application Exercise Papers Due: Customer Validation (4) April 21st Application Exercise Papers Due: Customer Creation (5) May 12th Team Research Papers Due – 10 pagesPage 7 of 7 Spring 2011 revision 3 Blank

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