There are many Entrepreneurial programs which teach about various aspects of Entrepreneurship.
They largely fall under these 5 types.
- Focus on making your business plan fool proof, explaining the nitty-gritty of startup like HR, Legal, Company lawyers, Cofounder agreements, term-sheets details etc.(SLP is a great example.)
- Online/Offline courses with many big name founders as advisors in the panel, talks by real entrepreneurs etc. (IIMB, many other biz schools, Private institutes)
- Incubators/Accelerators which take equity for putting company on a growth stage.
- Some dubious ones, which claim they teach everything in a day or two about a particular sector. Such as build a e-commerce business plan in a day etc.
The 1 and 2 have a valid place in the spectrum provided you have a company and a valid idea. 3 is bit of later stage game once you have figured out an idea. 4 is dangerous.
Where do we fit in those 4 ?
We are at Step 0.
We start way before all of it.
We often joke that just because you know exactly what Ratan Tata's playbook is doesn't mean you can operate like Ratan Tata. You also need the means of Ratan Tata in order to emulate Ratan Tata.
Therefore We go back to first principles and focus on the Entrepreneur rather than the idea.
- Consider this only 1-2% of all businesses get funded or fundable.
- Many great ideas which do not have a good precedence or not considered billion/trillion dollar ideas do not get initial funding.
- Even if you have a great idea, if you do not have the pedigree often one is at disadvantage.
This doesn't mean people shouldn't start-up. It only means one needs clarity on why one is starting up ? What are the various ways of starting up ? including not starting up as well. It isn't end of the world.
We provide various tools and techniques for various ways of starting up. If one decides to go Funded way, there are ways to do this and if one decides to build sustainable business before going to get funded, we teach effectuation, a way of expert entrepreneurs.
We focus more on building a sustainable business before writing a billion dollar business plan. They are not mutually exclusive.
But even before all this the program is designed get a real feel of entrepreneurship (the gory pain not often experienced if one is in a cushy job). It also focuses on building a peer support group and continued support along with tools and techniques to start off.
As we say it is a Gym,Not a School.
(P:S :- If you are of a pedigree with an Aunt who is a VC AND sitting on a pile of cash AND have quotes of post Success Steve Job on your wall/screensaver AND your are an enlightened being emotionally, you may want to rethink applying 🙂 ).