Syllabus

Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 3 sessions / week for 2 weeks, 3 hours / session

Prerequisites

No prerequisites for this course other than having an interest in entrepreneurship.

Course Information

This Independent Activities Period (IAP) Course 15.S21 was formerly known as 15.975.

Purpose of Course

The nuts and bolts of preparing a Business Plan and Starting a New Venture Plan was explored in this 25th annual course offering. The course is open to members of the MIT Community and to others interested in entrepreneurship. It is particularly recommended for persons who are interested in starting or are involved in a new business or venture. Because some of the speakers are judges of the MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition, persons who are planning to enter the Competition should find the course particularly useful. In the past approximately 50% of the class has been from the Engineering / Science / Architecture Schools and 50% from the Sloan School of Management.

Grading and Course Credit

  • MIT students may take this course for 3 units of Pass / Fail Credit.
  • Attendance at each session is required (unless otherwise approved) and the writing requirement must be fulfilled.

Calendar

SES # TOPICS SUBTOPICS KEY DATES
1

Part 1: Introduction and Overview of Business Plans

Speaker

Joe Hadzima

Introduction to Business Plans

Introduction to Virtual Ink

Team Building

Part 2: Refining and Presenting Your Venture Idea

Speaker

Stephen Pearse

Presenting Your Idea
2

Part 1: Marketing and Sales

Speaker

Bob Jones

This session discusses issues and provided guidance on how to approach the marketing section of your business plan.  

Part 2: Business Models

Speaker

Rich Kivel 
Serial Healthcare 
Industry Entrepreneur

This session discusses some common business models and when are they most appropriately used.
3

Part 1: Financing Sources Panel

Speakers

Axel Bichara 
Amir Nashat 
Julianne Zimmerman

Bootstrapping the early stages

Funding from the 3 F’s

Angels

Private placements

Customer financing

Consulting

Venture capital

Bank financing

 

Part 2: Financial Projections

Speaker

Charlie Tillett

This portion of the program introduces some financial projection techniques based on actual business experience.
4

Part 1: Founder’s Journey

Speaker

Ken Zolot

Panel

Gihan 
Amarasiriwardena 
Nina Dudnik 
John Harthorne

The speaker along with a panel of entrepreneurs provides an overview of important questions to explore when embarking upon starting a company. Executive Summaries Due

Part 2: Legal Issues

Speaker

Joe Hadzima

Intellectual Property Law-Patents

Copyrights

Trademarks and Tradesecrets

Major hidden tax traps in starting a business

General questions and answers on legal issues for the entrepreneur

5

Part 1: Negotiation Skills

Speakers

Mindy Garber 
Victoria Bennet

Interactive presentation  

Part 2: Organizational and People Issues

Speaker

Joost Bonsen

Building an External Team and an Internal Team

Developing and implementing a philosophy for the business

6

Pitfalls and Plan Execution

Speaker

Yonald Chery

What really happened to Virtual Ink Writing Assignment Due

Course Info

Learning Resource Types

theaters Lecture Videos
assignment Written Assignments
notes Lecture Notes
co_present Instructor Insights