Key Elements of Entrepreneurial Success

Learn about the four key elements of business success.

Free Course
Learn about the four key elements of business success.




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William Sahlman is one of the world’s leading authorities on entrepreneurship. As a professor at Harvard Business School, his research focuses on investment and financing decisions made in entrepreneurial ventures at all stages of their development. In this course, Professor Sahlman explains why the best money comes from customers not venture capitalists. He describes the key elements of an entrepreneurial venture using the example of John Osher who developed the spin toothbrush.

You will learn how to achieve the greatest value by changing the relationship of these elements to one another. He identifies important factors to improve entrepreneurial success. He focuses on what drives entrepreneurs, the importance of recognising opportunity and dealing with change. He discusses how your organisation depends on great people and what to look for when hiring.

This course will be of great interest to business professionals and students looking for greater knowledge and understanding of the key elements of entrepreneurial success.

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Learning Outcomes

Learning outcomes - How entrepreneurs should focus on generating income from customers rather than on raising venture capital funding; - How the entrepreneurs job is to find the investors who add rather than subtract value; - The importance of proactively searching to identify a gap in the market and then leveraging one’s experience; - Describe the four key elements of an entrepreneurial venture. - Create the greatest value by “changing the game”; - Identify the three factors that helped John Osher, the developer of the low-cost spin toothbrush to succeed; - Learn how entrepreneurship is about a way of managing opportunity pursuit, future orientation and relentless execution regardless of the resources one actually possesses; - See that entrepreneurship is about being opportunity driven: recognising opportunity in all types of circumstance; - Learn that the key to successful entrepreneurship is anticipating and dealing with change; - Explain the critical elements to observe in the process of hiring people; - Why the recruitment of good people is hard and the critical importance of fixing hiring mistakes; - State the three critical ingredients of venture success.


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