Mayfield Fellows Program by tblackinc

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									E140A Course Description and Policies                                                                           

                                        E140A Home | Description | Calendar/Syllabus | Teams | Term Project | MFP Forum | Handouts | Guest FAQ

                                                      E140A Course Description and Policies
                                                             Spring Quarter 2011

                                                Contact Info Key Info Course Materials Course Description Grading

         Contact Information
         Professor and Co-Director of Mayfield Fellows Program
              Tom Byers
              Office: Huang Engineering Center, Room 346
              Phone: 650-725-8271
              Fax: 650-723-1614
              Office Hours: Wednesdays, 2-4 PM

         Executive Director of STVP and Co-Director of Mayfield Fellows Program
              Tina Seelig
              Office: Huang Engineering Center, Room 003
              Phone: 650-725-1627
              Office Hours: Fridays, 2-4 PM

         Teaching Assistant
              Jessie Juusola
              Office: Huang Engineering Center, Suite 263
              Phone: 650-279-8855
              Office Hours: By appointment

         Administrative Assistant
             Yvonne Hankins
             Phone: 650-725-0550
             Fax: 650-725-8799

         E-Mail Distribution Lists
             Class distribution (received by all students and teaching team) email alias:
             Case email assignments (received by instructors and TA only) alias:

         Key Course Information:
         Course Objectives:
              To learn leadership and management skills for the successful growth of emerging technology companies by creating a fast-paced
              and effective learning environment. To complete the initial phase of the Mayfield Fellows Program and prepare for the upcoming
              summer work assignment.
              Tuesdays & Thursdays, 1:15-3:05 PM
              Wallenberg Hall, Room 127
              Limited to Mayfield Fellows selected for the current year. Others should visit the STVP site for other courses on entrepreneurship
              4 units
         Course web site:

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         Some Important Administrative Details:

             1. There are only ten weeks in this course, barely the minimum necessary to cover the essentials of this topic area. If you anticipate
                missing more than one class, please speak with an instructor immediately.
             2. If you expect to miss a class, please let the teaching assistant know ahead of time via e-mail. It will be your responsibility to find
                out from your classmates or the teaching assistant what material was covered, what additional assignments were made, and to
                obtain any handouts you may have missed.
             3. You are expected to be prepared for every session. It is our practice to spread participation over the class; we may call upon you. It
                is never our intention to embarrass anyone -- if you are not prepared, let one of us know before class and we will not call on you.
             4. In order to allow the speakers to be able to call you by name, we ask that you use a name card during every session of the quarter.
                This is an absolute requirement.
             5. Feel free to discuss the course and your learning progress with the instructors at any time. We are always happy to discuss items of
                interest. The teaching assistant is also available for questions you have about any issue.
             6. Given the pace of this course, we will do all that we can to use class time effectively and ask you to do the same. This includes
                starting and ending on time. The teaching assistant will take attendance in the first five minutes of the class and we will always end
                on time.
             7. Our distinguished guest speakers are aggressive, successful, and articulate. Interrupt and ask them questions at any time! They will
                be forewarned. They will display an earnest desire to help you understand new ventures.

         Course Materials:
         Required Materials
                   Course Description & Policies (this document)
                   Course Calendar
                   Course Term Project Assignment

         Required Readings
              Priority Reading
                    Reader (To Be Distributed)
                    Byers, Dorf, and Nelson Technology Ventures: From Idea to Enterprise, McGraw-Hill, 3rd Edition
                          List of recommended sections for assigned readings in Byers, Dorf, and Nelson, 3rd Edition
                          Purchase Byers, Dorf, and Nelson, 3rd Edition here
                    Geoffrey Moore, Crossing the Chasm, HarperCollins, 2002
                    Tina Seelig, What I Wish I Knew When I Was 20, HarperOne, 2009
                    Cases and articles from Harvard Business Review can be downloaded online
                          Go to the General and Reference Works Database on the Stanford library website. Then go to the ABI/INFORM
                          database and search for the article by title, in quotations.
                    Cases from the Harvard Business School Press. Visit HBS Case Library to purchase.

                Supplemental Reading and Viewing
                     Web links in session pages
                     Video clips in session pages

         Highly Recommended Reading
                   Blank, The Four Steps to the Epiphany,, 2010
                   Henry Riggs, Understanding the Financial Score, Morgan and Claypool Publishers, 2006
                   Cialdini, Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, Quill William Morrow, 1993

         Suggested Web Sites
                   STVP Entrepreneurship Corner ( The STVP Entrepreneurship Corner is a free online archive of
                   entrepreneurship resources for teaching and learning with an emphasis in engineering and the sciences. The mission of the
                   project is to support and encourage faculty around the world who teach entrepreneurship to future scientists and engineers.
                   Jim Collins' site (
                   Entrepreneurship blogs

         Course Description:

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E140A Course Description and Policies                                                            

         Management of Technology Ventures is focused on developing an understanding of the issues and techniques for growing emerging
         technology companies. This distinguishes the course from those which focus on business plan writing and the actual formation of a
         venture. The course takes participants through a range of issues faced by management in building a new enterprise. These include
         product and market strategy, venture financing and cash flow management, culture and team building, innovation and creativity,
         real-time decision making, and the overall challenges of managing growth and handling adversity.

         The intellectual basis for E140A is grounded in the "V-I-E" framework from Collins and Lazier's Managing the Small to Mid-Sized
         Company textbook, which is contained in the course reader. As shown in the Course Calendar, various sessions focus on key strategic
         decisions described by Collins and Lazier as product, market, cash flow management, and organizational development. "Entrepreneurial
         Leadership" cases provide special opportunities to integrate the material. Additional models and analysis tools are introduced throughout
         the quarter to highlight particular aspects of technology entrepreneurship. For example, the course includes Geoff Moore's "chasm"
         model on the technology adoption life cycle and marketing in young companies.

         The course sessions are presented in a sequence somewhat consistent with the key strategic decision areas outlined in Collins and Lazier.
         After an initial overview of entrepreneurship, the course examines product and market strategies, finance and cash flow management,
         and issues related to organization design and entrepreneurial leadership.


         Several methods of instruction are utilized: lectures, case discussions, workshops, group projects, and guest presentations. The core
         concepts and discussions are presented in the main sessions, which are led by the instructor. Some of the case discussions are assisted by
         a guest who brings special knowledge to the time period of that particular case or who brings professional expertise to the body of
         knowledge under discussion. See the Course Calendar for detailed information on each session.

         This course incorporates both individual and group efforts. Students form study groups early in the quarter and meet regularly to prepare
         for class discussion. Each group will be required to present a case opening for two of the cases during the term. Email assignments are
         submitted individually or as a team, and group discussion is encouraged even for individual assignments.

         In addition, a group term project and in-class presentation is required.

         Finally, a web-based learning portfolio called the MFP Forum reflecting each student's personal takeaways from E140A and MS&E472
         is required.

              There are no prerequisites. A working knowledge of accounting is helpful -- typically gained by taking MS&E140 or Econ 90
              beforehand (or simultaneously). In addition, knowledge of organizational behavior (e.g., MS&E180) could prove useful. Students
              from E145 and MS&E472 (or similar courses) will have the benefit of previous instruction in entrepreneurship.

             All students requesting admission to E140A must be previously selected Mayfield Fellows. Please see the MFP site for more
             information. Sorry, no auditors can be accommodated in E140A.

         Final course grades will be assigned according to the following:

         50%: Active Participation. Participation in classroom discussion, whether about the case under consideration or about the topic of the
         lecture is critical. Participation in your study groups and the quality of your group's Case Openings (10% each), as well as the quality of
         email assignments and other on-line contributions will also contribute to this part of your grade.

         25%: Term Project. Completion of the term project assignment with a project group. Both a written report and in-class presentation are
         required. See the Term Project Assignment page for additional details.

         25%: MFP Forum. See the MFP Forum page for more information.

         Classroom Participation:

         The grading of classroom participation is difficult because of an element of subjectivity not present in grading written assignments.
         Nevertheless, it is a vital part of the course. Most students feel comfortable in speaking up with thoughtful comments and questions, but
         some do not, and we wish to be fair to everyone. We will not be grading on "air time", but rather on the quality of the question or

         All assigned readings are to be completed before the session -- see the E140A Course Calendar for assigned readings.

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         You are encouraged to discuss each case in advance with your fellow students. In fact, you are required to form a study group consisting
         of two other students and then meet regularly before each class. These study groups must be formed by the end of Session #3. Use the
         Study Questions for each session while meeting with your study partners to prepare for class. They are not to be included in the e-mail
         assignment. Guidelines for the completion of e-mail assignments are below.

         There are no rights or wrongs in entrepreneurship, only choices. Some pitfalls can be avoided and there are ways of optimizing the
         probability of success. Participating in classroom discussions, freely and without fear, is strongly urged. No opinion is held in disregard
         and only through active discussion can we arrive at some sense of reasonable action. As moderators, our role is to keep this effort
         moving toward a logical conclusion or decision. Carefully read the first chapter in the Collins & Lazier readings for guidance. Also, see
         these links on case analysis at Case Method by Gibbons and Case Method by Davis.

         Case Openings:

         During the course of the term, each study group will be required to present two case openings to facilitate the discussion for particular
         sessions. Each case opening should consist of

                  A brief analysis of the situation, including what the numbers (if any) tell us.
                  The group's recommendation for the key decision.

         In addition, case openings should make use of the Entrepreneurship Corner video clips. The total length of the case opening should be no
         more than 10 minutes (strictly enforced). If your group makes use of overhead slides or other presentation material, you should limit
         yourself to just a few items. Case openings should emphasize the frameworks and models covered in class and should be in the same
         spirit as other presentations made by the teaching team. You should email the teaching team a copy of any slides. By the following
         Monday after the opening, the team will receive a short email with feedback from the teaching team. The grade for the openings will fall
         into three categories: (1) exceeds expectations, (2) meets expectations, and (3) needs improvement.

         Remarks About the Written Assignments:

         Assignments are to be written individually or as a team, as specified by each specific assignment, and should be posted to the MFP
         Forum under the assignment topic for the relevant session. Even when the writeup for an assignment is individual, you may discuss your
         content explicity with your study partners.

         In general, use a bullet-point format and keep the submission short and concise (less than one page). Assignments must be posted no
         later than 9AM on the day of the corresponding session (see E140A homework policy page for more information). The teaching team
         reads each response before class starts to optimize that session's learning environment. Grading is on a "check plus(+)/minus(-)" basis
         and only students receiving "minus (-)" scores are notified by email.

         Since assignments are posted to a common forum, it is important to formulate your own opinion and to post your submission before
         reading others' entries. That said, once you've posted your submission, you are strongly encouraged to review your classmates' postings.
         Common errors to avoid include:

             1.   Focusing too heavily on minor issues or those on which there are little data.
             2.   Lamenting because of insufficient data in the case and ignoring creative alternatives.
             3.   Rehashing of case data -- assume the reader knows the case.
             4.   Not appropriately evaluating the quality of the case's data.
             5.   Obscuring the quantitative analysis, making it difficult to understand.
             6.   Typical "minus(-)" grades result from submissions that
                        are late
                        are not well integrated and lack clarity
                        do not address timing issues
                        do not recognize the cost implications or are not practical
                        get carried away with personal biases and are not pertinent to the key issues
                        are not thoroughly proofread and corrected

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