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Johns Hopkins Innovation Factory - Entrepreneur Development Program #1


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Session #1 of the Entrepreneur Development Program (EDP)

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Johns Hopkins Innovation Factory - Entrepreneur Development Program #1

  1. 1. Session #1: Becoming an Entrepreneur Presented by Glenn Alpert Entrepreneur Development Program
  2. 2. Entrepreneur Development Program Warm-up • Objectives • This week’s theme – “Becoming an Entrepreneur” • Introduce yourself / what are you working on? • Short Discussion – what does the word “Entrepreneur” mean to you?
  3. 3. Entrepreneur Development Program Introduction
  4. 4. Entrepreneur Development Program The Paradox • Entrepreneurs are widely celebrated as heroes and major successes AFTER they are successful. • Before you reach the point of success, only a few people seem to care. • When you are successful, many people want to associate with you. • Entrepreneurship is encouraged ad nauseam but there is a need for more accessible peer-to-peer / collective learning and coaching. • No systematic / guaranteed path to success but you can succeed by following principles, learning from mistakes, and perseverance. • Encouragement is fantastic but it is not enough on its own.
  5. 5. Entrepreneur Development Program Goal Setting • Move from unconscious reactions to consciously proactive. • Increase self-awareness and identify areas for improvement. • Identify what you need to modify/improve to achieve your goals. • Identify “blind spots” and sticking points. • Learn how to become more aware of the learning process. • Set your personal goals. • Identify what makes you passionate/excited and self-empowered.
  6. 6. Entrepreneur Development Program Risk vs. Reward Risk Reward Risk Reward Stereotype of Entrepreneurship Your Objective: “De-Risking” Extra Diligence at Every Step(Appears Too Risky)
  7. 7. Entrepreneur Development Program Levels of Identity • Spiritual: Beliefs about who you are in the universe. What is “reality”? • Identity: Who are you? What is your life story? • Values: What are your values, ethics, and goals? • Capabilities: What can you do? what skills do you possess? • Behavior: How do you act, especially under stress or pressure? • Environment: What external factors shape your thinking and beliefs?
  8. 8. Entrepreneur Development Program Identity • What is your “story” of how you became the person you are today? • Who are you? • What beliefs do you have about yourself? • What is the “self”? • What is your professional and educational history? • What beliefs do you have about your own potential for success as an entrepreneur (positive or negative)? • What negative past experiences do you think could hold you back?
  9. 9. Entrepreneur Development Program Values • Where do your values come from? • How did you develop your system of ethics? • How do you make important decisions? • What is important to you in life? • What is the worst-case scenario of getting out of your comfort zone? • What is the best-case scenario? • What would make you happy in between best and worst-case scenarios?
  10. 10. Entrepreneur Development Program Capabilities • What skills do I have? • What are my talents? • What am I naturally good at? • What do I do well that I haven’t been able to apply in a work setting? • What skills or abilities am I weak in? • What skills and knowledge do I need to learn to reach the next level? • What are my personal learning, educational, and professional goals?
  11. 11. Entrepreneur Development Program Behavior • What types of situations do I have trouble handling? • What areas do I deny that I have problems with (blind spots)? • Who can I ask for feedback and an external perspective? • What behaviors or habits do I want to change about myself? • Whose behavior do I want to emulate? • Where did my negative / unproductive behaviors originate from? • How did my upbringing and parents/family life shape my behaviors?
  12. 12. Entrepreneur Development Program Environment • What (or who) is a positive influence in my life today? • How can I create and maximize positive influences? • What (or who) is a negative influence in my life today? • How can I remove or minimize negative influences? • What places or environments excite you just to be there? • What places or environments put you in a negative state of mind? • How can you get more of the positive and less of the negative?
  13. 13. Entrepreneur Development Program The Future • The future is unknown, but your actions today shape it. • Can we predict the future based on the past? • Can you predict your own future based on your own past? • “If you do what you’ve always done you’ll get what you’ve always got”. • “Insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results” • What future do you want to create for yourself? • What can you do today to start creating that future?
  14. 14. Entrepreneur Development Program Personal Resources • Time: How do you manage, maximize and control your time? • Energy: How do you manage your energy levels for max productivity? • Thinking Process: How do you make decisions? • People: Who do you know? Who knows you? Who will help you? • Knowledge: What do you already know and what can you learn? • Skills: What are your talents? What are you certain you are good at? • Financial Resources: What resources do you have at your disposal?
  15. 15. Entrepreneur Development Program Time • Time is the “ultimate control mechanism” - you have to start here. • Schedule your week out in advance, plan in 15-minute blocks. • Set alarms on your phone/PC for reminders or set up a Google drive. • How you spend your time determines your success - Track it! • Controlling your time leads to more control over your time. • Failing to control to your time leads to less control over your time. • Time is a limited resource, use it wisely!
  16. 16. Entrepreneur Development Program Energy • Sleep, nutrition, fitness, rest / recharge time, managing stress levels. • Entrepreneurship is a marathon with staggered sprints. • Work hours are unpredictable: “sprint” or “jog” at different times. • Sprinting: critical moments (presentations, sales meetings, high-stakes event). • Jogging: creative time, brainstorming, day-to-day workflow. • Mental “Gas Tank” - STOP WORKING when feeling depleted to avoid burnout. Energy is a limited resource, use it wisely!
  17. 17. Entrepreneur Development Program Thinking Process • How do you think? Not something we think about very often. • Your decisions now have real consequences for yourself and others. • Analytical tools to deal with uncertainty. • Thinking tools to make decisions. “Thinking about thinking”. • Cognitive biases, logical fallacies, and blind spots. • Life circumstances, habits (you are your habits), continuous learning. • Your success depends heavily on the strength of your thinking process.
  18. 18. Entrepreneur Development Program People • Business mentors and Teachers • Ecosystem (your network, board, team, clients, suppliers, stakeholders) • Family and friends • Role models you might not get to meet or interact with at the moment. Learn how to use mentors you can’t speak with (fundraising story). • New Peers • Mentees – people you mentor – pay it forward • Community and life outside of your career
  19. 19. Entrepreneur Development Program Knowledge • Work / professional experience • Academic / formal education • Personal learning / information education • Interpersonal skills • Self-awareness, planning, organization • Learning how to learn, synthesizing and accumulating knowledge • Knowing how to find out what you need to know quickly
  20. 20. Entrepreneur Development Program Skills • What were you good at as a kid / teenager? • How did those skills translate into your early career? • Create a skills inventory for yourself. • Surround yourself with people with complementary skill sets. • Continually identify develop the skills you need to reach the next level. • Skill acquisition – identify, learn, practice, integrate, and master. • Continual skill development, stay just outside of the comfort zone.
  21. 21. Entrepreneur Development Program Financial Resources • Current income • Savings • Expenses • Family support • Current financial obligations • Budgeting • Income sources: full-time, part-time, consulting, student loans?
  22. 22. Entrepreneur Development Program Interpersonal Skills • Social interactions take on a new layer of complexity when you are an entrepreneur. This may take you off guard at first. • Telling someone you are starting a company or business venture will likely result in a gauntlet of other questions. It may also surprise you that many people will judge you based on your responses. • Normal Interaction: You are a grad student in a full-time MBA program. Most conversations will result in someone asking “what do you plan to do after your MBA?” and that’s about it. • Normal Interaction: You are working full-time. People you meet may ask “so, what do you do?” or other questions about your job how you got into the field if you like it, and how long you have been doing it for.
  23. 23. Entrepreneur Development Program The Question Gauntlet • What does your business do? • How long have you been doing it for? • What did you do before starting your business? • Do you have employees? • Where is your office? • What makes you different than ______ ? (large well-known company) • Oh, so are you kind of like ______ ? (thing they read about online) • Did you raise funds? • How are you funding your company? • Is this your full-time job? • How are you paying your bills? • Is it just you (1-man shop)? • What is your competitive advantage? • What are your company’s mission / vision / values?
  24. 24. Entrepreneur Development Program Interpersonal Skills • Context vs. Content: Context overrides content in entrepreneurship • Context: Overall meaning and purpose underlying the interaction • Content: Words and “information” being conveyed • Business Setting: Context rules (clients / superiors / relationships) • Academic Setting: Content rules (reports / grades / research) • Often, the context in entrepreneurship is that the other person you are communicating with is evaluating how much time/effort/energy or financial commitment they should be spending on you, or if they should even listen to what you have to say. • Context is often “in the moment” and people make snap judgements based on it. If you misunderstand or misread context, people will be less likely to help you. Content can always be edited or re-written later.
  25. 25. Entrepreneur Development Program Interpersonal Skills • Criticism: Identify when criticism is constructive vs. non-constructive. Never get offended, just say “I am very good at taking criticism”. • Negativity: Some people want to discourage you for a variety of reasons (starting a new venture is not in their worldview, they tried and failed, or “paid their dues” first and feel you should before you succeed). • Skepticism: Don’t argue with a skeptic. You won’t be able to win an argument, and you will just waste your energy trying. Say “well, the proof is in the pudding, and I intend to prove myself”. • Rejection: Learn as much as you can from the experience, move on. • Being Ignored: Try different ways to get someone’s attention, move on.
  26. 26. Entrepreneur Development Program Interpersonal Skills • Responsiveness and Responsibility: What does this mean to you? • Responsiveness: • Getting back to people in a timely manner • Following up with tasks • Provide regular updates to mentors • Don’t “drop off the map” • Responsibility: • Do what you say you will do • Do EXACTLY what someone asks you to do (especially mentors) • Do what is “right” • Hold yourself accountable for all of your results
  27. 27. Entrepreneur Development Program Public Image • LinkedIn profile – get a professional photo taken, have profile reviewed • Facebook • Social media • Business cards • Personal appearance • Web presence / website / email signature • Create a brand-new bio for yourself
  28. 28. Entrepreneur Development Program Business Partners • You are more likely to succeed with a business partner in some cases • Someone with complimentary skill sets • Friends before business partners, someone you can trust • Find a fail-safe way to resolve arguments, force coming to resolutions • Close to equal time/effort investment • “Business” person and “Technical” person • Communication styles / learning to work together
  29. 29. Entrepreneur Development Program Beginning Your Journey • What are your expectations? • What is your timeline? • What time scales are you operating on? • Long-term thinking • Mental toughness • If to choose to go on this journey, it will change you in many ways • What do you need to invest (time / social life / opportunity cost)?
  30. 30. Entrepreneur Development Program Q&A Questions?