|esbm 4830 & emen 4825 | business plan preparation | syllabuspage title!|
One of the most exciting and satisfying activities in business is to start a new venture. In this course students will learn how to prepare a comprehensive strategy for launching a new business. The vehicle for achieving this is the preparation of a business plan based on an opportunity that students have selected.
Upon completion of this course students will:
Students will have the opportunity to apply their entire business education and experience to a very practical, hands-on project. Working in small teams, you will research the market for the product or service; prepare marketing, sales, development and operations plans; and make financial projections.
Writing a business plan requires you to ask tough questions about the nature of the business. What is the need for your product or service? What are the benefits? What is the target market and how will you penetrate it? What is your sustainable competitive advantage? How will you develop and produce the product or service? What management team is required? What are the risks of the venture and what can you do to reduce them? What are the financial implications of the plan? What resources, including funding, are required?
The most effective way to understand the entrepreneurial process is to take a hands-on approach. In this course students are expected to interact with the business community, be able to work effectively in teams, and be active participants in classroom discussions.
Strong written and oral skills greatly facilitate success in starting a new venture. Those individuals that can effectively communicate their ideas will have an advantage over those that cannot. As such, the assignments in the course center on written and oral presentations.
Early in the course, each student is required to prepare a one-page description of a business concept that they would like to pursue. Each student will then make a one-minute presentation of his or her concept to the class. Evaluation will be based upon the clarity and persuasiveness of the write-up.
From the individual business concepts submitted, the instructor will choose the top ten based on the persuasiveness of the concept description and the viability of the venture. Those students, whose ideas were deemed to be the best, will present their concept to the class and try to convince them of its brilliance.
It is the responsibility of the lead entrepreneur to recruit a team of four students. To help in this process, a ‘Trade Fair" will be held in which the lead entrepreneur will recruit team members from his or her fellow students who have expressed interest in working on the plan. It is highly recommended that the lead entrepreneur try to establish a diverse team, i.e. it should not be comprised of all marketing majors; someone with strong engineering or finance experience will greatly facilitate the team’s efforts.
To develop a thorough understanding of business plans, we will evaluate several different types. We will look in detail at how these plans were prepared, where they were especially effective, and how they could be improved.
Class sessions will generally be organized roughly as follows:
Resources and Materials
Helpful materials that can be downloaded from http://leeds-faculty.colorado.edu/Moyes
Other resources that may be useful during the semester include:
Students are expected to have a solid grounding in the basic business disciplines, including marketing, finance, operations, and accounting. Students also should have completed ESBM 3700 Entrepreneurial Environments and ESBM 4570 Entrepreneurial Finance. In particular, students are expected to have previously completed a business feasibility study. Students with an insufficient background to successfully complete the course may be asked to withdraw at the discretion of the instructor.
There are six components used to determine student grades:
Written Assignments: There are 7 written assignments to be handed in by each team during the semester. Assignments will be graded on the thoroughness in which the questions raised in Writing a Successful Business Plan are addressed and the evidence provided to support the conclusions. The grade for these assignments is as follows:
Week 5: Opportunity/Need, et al. 20 points
Week 7: 10 Call Reports, et al. 20 points
Week 8: Customer Survey Questionnaire (10 points)
Week 9: Business Model 100 points
Week 11: Marketing Plan 50 points
Week 12: Operations Plan, et al. 20 points
Week 13: Financial, et al, 20 points
There are 1,000 points possible in the course:
Final letter grades will be determined according to the following scale:
The average grade for the class is about 870 points.
General Course Policies
1. Written assignments are to be handed in at the beginning of the class for which they have been assigned, unless otherwise specified by the instructor. Written assignments not received will receive a grade of zero.
2. Attendance Policy: Students are required to attend every class. If you are unable to attend a class, please send an email to the instructor prior to class. Should you miss class your grade may be reduced by one letter grade.
It is critically important that you attend the first two classes. We decide on the concepts that become the bases for the business plans and you get a chance to know your fellow students who will become members of your team. Students who do not attend these classes will be dropped from the course.
The following campus policies that apply in this course:
Honor Code The purpose of the honor code at the University of Colorado at Boulder is to secure for students an environment in which all individuals have responsibility for, and are appropriately recognized for, their individual academic and personal achievements. See www.colorado.edu/academics/honorcode.
Students with Disabilities Students with disabilities who qualify for academic accommodations must provide a letter from Disability Services (DS) and discuss specific needs with the professor, preferably during the first two weeks of class. See www.colorado.edu/sacs/disabilityservices.
Religious Holiday The University of Colorado at Boulder has a legal and moral obligation to accommodate all students who must be absent from classes or miss scheduled exams in order to observe religious holidays.
Student Behavior Students and faculty each have responsibility for maintaining an appropriate learning environment. Students who fail to adhere to behavioral standards may be subject to discipline. Faculty has the professional responsibility to treat students with understanding, dignity and respect, to guide classroom discussion and to set reasonable limits on the manner in which students express opinions. See www.colorado.edu/policies/classbehavior.html.
Instructor Web site: http://leeds-faculty.colorado.edu/Moyes
Leeds School of Business
University of Colorado at Boulder
Boulder, CO 80309-0419
Office: Fleming 115
Wed 3:00 to 5:30pm
Thursday 4:00 to 6:00pm
And by appointment