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Embed code for: WTBI SYLLABUS Fall 2011
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What’s the Big Idea?
Class Meetings: Maxwell Auditorium, Monday/Wednesday 2:15 – 3:35
Contact: Michael D’Eredita, PhD
Office: 322 Hinds Hall
Phone: 443 1878
Contact: William Padgett
Office: 306 @ The Warehouse
Phone: 443 9192
Contact: John Liddy
Office: The Sandbox, The Syracuse Technology Garden
Office hours: It is preferred at this time that students make an appointment or contact Mike, Bill, or John directly via e-mail.
Innovation in information technology. Learn how to develop, grow and vet ideas to create a product, service or business. Each week, students will be presented with and engage in discussion about topics specific to the development of ideas into viable products, services or businesses, an understanding of customers, consumers and users and a firm grasp of the concept of “the marketplace.”
The semester will be composed of three main phases. The first phase will be focused on generating, developing and building student ideas, guided by creativity exercises, market situations and basic business fundamentals. The second phase will focus on refining ideas, based on “customer” and/or “user” needs, wants and interests. The third phase will focus on team formation, idea refinement and presentation with an eye towards the building of both a proof of concept and foundation for a business.
The semester will conclude with a final presentation of student ideas to a community of investors, experienced entrepreneurs and subject matter experts. Student teams with ideas viewed to have business potential will be invited to participate in a highly-focused Spring semester where ideas will be further analyzed and sculpted into actionable plans, with the potential of being funded and transitioned into the Syracuse Student Sandbox.
Learn how to generate, develop, grow and vet new product, service and business ideas.
Learn how ideas are formed and grown.
Understand what makes some ideas more business appropriate than others.
Be able to conceptualize and present a business idea to potential stakeholders and supporters (employees, co-workers, family, friends, partners and investors).
Learn how to focus your idea on your people’s needs and wants.
Learn how to understand the competition better and find opportunities that are missed (and needed) in a market
Learn how to best form a team that can bring an idea to a reality
Learn how to scope and present the necessary resources
Have a tangible understanding of your next step towards making your idea a reality.
THE COLLECTIVE FOCUS AND GOAL OF THE CLASS IS TO DEVELOP 30 IDEAS THAT WE CAN SAY THE FOLLOWING ABOUT:
Our idea will positively impact peoples’ lives because it directly addresses a specific 'need', 'problem' and/or 'want.'
Our idea has the potential to be a sustainable business (for-profit or not-for-profit) – or a sustainable product or service within a business.
Our idea is a BIG idea.
We love our idea and are able to develop it so that others will love it as much as we do.
Our idea has a team with the collective skills, experience and/or education to get it done.
Our idea has a team that can clearly and comprehensively present the external resources they will need to develop and grow the idea into reality: SPECIFICALLY, to the point of (1) an actionable business plan by the end of the following Spring semester and (2) a proof of concept by either the following Spring or Summer of next year.
The presentation of our idea was both clear and professional. The presentation alone instills a sense of confidence in the abilities and passion of the team.
In addition to various readings that will be distributed across the semester, you will be required to read and reference two of the following texts (your choice) across the semester:
Komisar, Randy (2001) The Monk and The Riddle: The Art of Creating a Life While Making a Living
Pink, Daniel (2001) A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future
The following websites will be referenced throughout the semester:
The following readings are recommended and will be referenced throughout the semester:
Brooks, David (2011) The Social Animal
Johansen, Bob (2007) Get There Early-Sensing the Future to Compete in the Present
Sutton, Robert (2001) Weird Ideas That Work: 11 1/2 Practices for Promoting, Managing, and Sustaining Innovation
Livingston, Jessica (2008) Founders at Work: Stories of Startups’ Early Days
Kennedy, Wendy (2008) So What? Who Cares? Why You?
Heath, Chip & Heath, Dan (2007) Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die.
Ayers¸Ian (2007) Super Crunchers: Why Thinking-by-Numbers Is the New Way to Be Smart
Anderson, Chris (2006) The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More
Battelle, John (2005) The Search: How Google and Its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business and Transformed Our Culture
Ferguson, Charles & Ferguson, Charles H. (2001) High Stakes No Prisoners : A Winner's Tale of Greed and Glory in the Internet Wars
Gladwell, Malcolm (2000) The Tipping Point
Kidder, Tracey (1978) The Soul of a New Machine
Kawasaki, Guy (2004) The Art of the Start: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything
Michalko, Michael (2001) Cracking Creativity: The Secrets of Creative Genius
OVERVIEW OF SCHEDULE (BY PHASES):
Phase 1: Problems, Wants and Needs
The first phase will be focused on developing and building LOTS of student ideas, guided by identifiable problems, wants and needs. Students will also engage in “out of the box” idea generation and practical approaches to developing a solid idea. The process will be a mix of piggy-backing, evolving and creative destruction. That is, ideas will be generated, researched and eliminated. The process will be both highly collaborative and constructive. The goal of this phase is to be able to answer the following about your idea: So what?
By end of this phase, students will have read:
the first of their 2 books
Phase 2: Who is your customer? What is the market potential?
The second phase will focus on the refining ideas, based on “customer” and/or “user” needs, wants and interests. This phase will focus on putting the ideas to the test. “So, you have an idea. Great! Now, who else other than you is going to care about it?” This part of the semester will require students to research their idea through the eyes of potential customers and users. This process will strengthen some ideas and illuminate fatal weaknesses with others. The ideas that survive this phase will be presented again in terms of both the refined idea and the customers/users. Some teams might combine or simply reorganize through this process. The goal of this phase is to be able to answer the following question: Who cares?
the second of their 2 books
Phase 3: What is on your team? Who is your competition?
The ideas that make it to this phase will now have a sharper focus and clearer understanding of the customer/user and marketplaces. Teams able to make ideas a reality will solidify. It is now time to understand if there is a business here and prove it; some ideas might be very meaningful and useful, but simply not able to support a business. At the end of this phase, student groups will develop a web page on accelerate.syr.edu that summarizes the results from all the phases and items under “Focus and Goals” above (this will include the development of a short video). The teams with the ideas that are proven to be viable given each of the seven goals listed above by a community of alumni, entrepreneurs, investors and academic experts will be invited to participate in the Spring semester course: Idea 2 Startup. Groups will also be given the opportunity to earn funding for Proof of Concept build-out via accelerate.syr.edu. The goal is to be able to answer the following: Why you?
This course continues to evolve. Changes will be made based on student feedback and progress across the semester(s). Per the development of your ideas, change will be the norm.
It is assumed that students will attend every class. Any changes in schedule or focus will be presented in class. This will be assumed to be adequate notification.
GENERAL GRADING SCHEME:
On-line Idea Participation 20%
Book Summary/Discussion 10%
Use of Customer/User Feedback 20%
Final Idea/Rating: 30%
Individual Participation (20%)
Students are expected to read the assigned readings and attend and actively participate in every class across the semester. Class participation will be based on (1) attendance and (2) the quantity and quality of participation while in class. Attendance will be measured on a percent attendance basis and converted to a 1 – 20% scale with 0% equating to 0% and 100% equating to 20% of your total grade. Open discussion will be encouraged throughout the semester.
On-line Participation (20%)
Students will be given quotas for idea generation and on-line participation throughout the first 2/3s of the semester. Input from each student will be measured via postings and percentage of quotas reached will directly translate to the on-line participation portion of their grade.
Book Summary/Discussion (10%)
Students must read and summarize the 2 required readings and actively engage in breakout discussions in class about these books. This assignment is an ideal opportunity for students to read contemporary books on idea generation, creativity and entrepreneurship.
Use of Customer/User Feedback (20%)
Students will be expected to interact with potential customers and users in order to “test” their idea. They will be expected to both present their results and explain how their results impacted the iteration of their idea. This process will be repeated as many times as the semester allows.
Your Big Idea (30%)
Students will develop a business idea across the semester. Students will present their final business idea by illustrating the iterative process they went through. Final ideas will be rated by experienced funders and founders. Two page summaries are also required: 1 page summarizing their idea, 1 page summarizing their iterative process. Final grades of each team member on each team project will be adjusted based on peer evaluations throughout the semester; a team/project grade will be assigned and then adjusted accordingly (i.e., higher or lower) for each team member (grading scheme to be distributed).
TENTATIVE SCHEDULE (Key dates in bold)
Mon Aug 29 Introduction and pictures Wed Aug 30 Step 1: Resources and why they matter.
What’s a problem, need or want? How do you discover them?
Warm up The Vine Mon Sept 5 NO CLASS Wed Sept 7 Intellectual Property debunked – visit from IP lawyers Mon Sept 12 Sharing of your resource maps / An opportunity to help iterate a live product Wed Sept 14 P-N-W generation exercise - open forum Mon Sept 19 P-N-W to Solutions and Solution to P-N-W Wed Sept 21 The art of iteration and being lean Mon Sept 26 Presentation of some potential customer and user feedback. So now what? Wed Sept 28 From ideas to BIG ideas Mon Oct 3 The pitch and why it matters: practice practice practice Wed Oct 5 Formal Pitch Day: So what? (1 min) Mon Oct 10 BOOK BREAKOUT 1 – ¾ page summary due Wed Oct 12 “Hefting an Idea” Intro to Audiences, Customers and Users Mon Oct 17 How to refine and grow ideas based on market research Wed Oct 19 Revisit: The art of iteration and being lean Mon Oct 24 Presentation of some potential customer and user feedback. So now what? Wed Oct 26 Pitch practice Mon Oct 31 Formal Pitch Day: So what? Who cares? (2 min) Wed Nov 2 Teams, how they form and why they matter Mon Nov 7 Float … Wed Nov 9 BOOK BREAKOUT 2 – ¾ page summary due Mon Nov 14 Presentation of some potential customer and user feedback. And now? Wed Nov 16 GUEST or Pitch Prep Mon Nov 21 Thanksgiving Break Wed Nov 23 Thanksgiving Break Mon Nov 28 GUEST or Pitch Prep Wed Nov 30 Two pagers due Mon Dec 5 Final Pitch – So what? Who cares? Why you? (3 min) Wed Dec 7 Decision Deadline for Ideas: Top 10 Ideas Gain Entry in Spring Course
The academic community of Syracuse University and of the School of Information Studies requires the highest standards of professional ethics and personal integrity from all members of the community. Violations of these standards are violations of a mutual obligation characterized by trust, honesty, and personal honor. As a community, we commit ourselves to standards of academic conduct, impose sanctions against those who violate these standards, and keep appropriate records of violations. The academic integrity statement can be found at: http://supolicies.syr.edu/ethics/acad_integrity.htm.
If you believe that you need accommodations for a disability, please contact the Office of Disability Services (ODS), http://disabilityservices.syr.edu, located in Room 309 of 804 University Avenue, or call (315) 443-4498 for an appointment to discuss your needs and the process for requesting accommodations. ODS is responsible for coordinating disability-related accommodations and will issue students with documented disabilities Accommodation Authorization Letters, as appropriate. Since accommodations may require early planning and generally are not provided retroactively, please contact ODS as soon as possible.
class about these books. This assignment is an ideal opportunity for students to read contemporary books on idea generation, creativity and entrepreneurship.
Warm up The Vine Mon Sept 5 NO CLASS Wed Sept 7 Intellectual Property debunked – visit from IP lawyers Mon Sept 12 Sharing of your resource maps / An opportunity to help iterate a live product Wed Sept 14 P-N-W generation exercise - open forum Mon Sept 19 P-N-W to Solutions and Solution to P-N-W Wed Sept 21 The art of iteration and being lean Mon Sept 26 Presentation of some potential customer and user feedback. So now what? Wed Sept 28 From ideas to BIG ideas Mon Oct 3 The pitch and why it matters: practice practice practice Wed Oct 5 Formal Pitch Day: So what? (1 min) Mon Oct 10 BOOK BREAKOUT 1 – ¾ page summary due Wed Oct 12 “Hefting an Idea” Intro to Audiences, Customers and Users Mon Oct 17 How to refine and grow ideas based on market research Wed Oct 19 Revisit: The art of iteration and being lean Mon Oct 24 Presentation of some potential customer and user feedback. So now what? Wed Oct 26 Pitch practice Mon Oct 31 Formal Pitch Day: So what? Who cares? (2 min) Wed Nov 2 Teams, how they form and why they matter Mon N