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MAN 633 Entrepreneurial Spirit (Fall 2020)

MAN 633 Entrepreneurial Spirit (Fall 2020)

 

Fall 2020 Situation

In accordance with the university policy to help fight the current COVID-19 pandemic, MCEI and the Chair of SME Reserach and Entrepreneurship moved its teaching efforts online for the fall semester 2020. You can expect all session to take place on Zoom and you will receive all the relevant information as well as exams online. Unfortunatly, this also means that networking, which usually represents a major part of the entrepreneurship experience we offer, cannot take place like it used to. Therefore we encourage you to make use of our digital networking opportunities as well as look out for other opportunities in the ecosystem. We are looking forward to a great semester with you and we are certain you embark on an amazing entrepreneurial journey.

 

Course Outline

This course is about making things happen!

You do not think inside the box and love working on challenging projects? Next to studying, you are eager to apply your knowledge in the real world and learn from startup teams on the project? You like new ideas and love their execution? You want to dive deeper into the anatomy of business models and get the unit economics right? Then you should opt for Entrepreneurial Spirit. The course is our format to foster startup growth, entrepreneurial culture, and to advance the startup ecosystem at and around the University of Mannheim. With their expertise, the students support the startups in improving their products, services, and business models and help them to be more competitive. We will work with real companies in this course and you will actively contribute to their well-being. Thus, high dedication, willingness to take over responsibilities, and professionalism are a prerequisite. There are two tracks in MAN 633: One for students who have no startup project yet and one for students (individual or founding team) who work on their own advanced startup project.

MAN 633 helps advance startups in our network by sending students teams as a task force (Inside the Venture Track) but also helps students with an advanced startup idea to reach their next milestones and gain support in a course format (Own Venture Track). For both tracks, the course starts with an initial Kick-off. The Kick-off Session is the same for both tracks and provides hands-on tools to assess, structure, and solve startup challenges. Following this Kick-off, the students form interdisciplinary teams of 2-4 and solve challenges in real ventures. Experienced MCEI coaches will work closely with the student consulting teams to make sure that they are on track to maximize their learning experience while simultaneously permitting the teams to have as much fun as possible. The exam (30 min.) is based on "Ash Maurya (2016). Scaling Lean: Mastering the Key Metrics for Startup Growth" and will follow about 3 to 4 weeks after the Kick-off session.

The direct integration of the students into the startups within the framework of the course enables a joint action-oriented learning experience on both sides. In addition, we strengthen the startup community, promote startup companies as well as potential startups, integrate startups directly into the university's offerings and support the transfer of knowledge and technology between the university and the economy.

What you can expect from us is dedicated and continuous feedback to advance your projects, intros to MCEI partners who can help you grow, and a fun and rewarding atmosphere in class and on our joint entrepreneurial journey. Do not miss out on our Startup Lounges and Founder Talks throughout the semester as they are an integral part to all MCEI lectures. 

 

Inside the Venture Track (for students with no own startup)

Offers students who have no own startup but want to experience the startup world an excellent opportunity to work at eye-level with an experienced real-world startup team. The concept: Solving challenges of young companies with student approaches and on-site by student teams. Assisted by an experienced MCEI coach, the students carry out joint projects with the startup after a needs analysis. The startups are recruited via our extensive MCEI network.

Startups participating this semester (more will follow soon):

 

Own Venture Track (for students who already work on their advanced startup project)

Further advance your own startup in class. Your performance appraisal will be according to milestones set at the beginning of class and you will receive continuous counseling by MCEI coaches. Additionally to working on your own startup, MAN 633 offers you the opportunity to recruit a student team from class to work on your startup’s challenges during the course just like in our “client companies” in the Inside the Venture Track. Please approach the instructors upon course registration to sort out whether your startup project is eligible for the Own Venture Track. This offer is for advanced startup projects only – you can start greenfield (i.e., at idea stage) in MAN 631.

 

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course students

  • have learned tools to analyze and develop business models and how to tweak them towards growth
  • are able to solve real-life challenges in new ventures in a project format
  • have learned first-hand what it is like to work in a startup by gaining real startup experience
  • have acquired managerial skills and gained familiarity with problem solving in practice
  • have a solid foundation for, e.g., a seminar or master thesis at our chair - especially theses "Inside the Venture"
  • have improved their team work, presentation and consulting skills
  • in total: Real life challenges, learnings for life

 

Registration and Final Course Decision

Please register via the Student Portal prior to Kick-off. We highly appreciate diversity of all kind - including disciplines! Please send us an e-mail upfront to make sure that your potential MAN 633 Own Venture Track project qualifies - otherwise MAN 631 might be a better class for you to join. Inside the Venture Track project candidates do not need to contact us via e-mail. Kick-off participation (full day) is absolutely mandatory. No exceptions granted! Not participating at the Kick-off leads to immediate de-registration. 

There is no way to participate in MAN 633 when you do not attend the Kick-off Meeting! As an Inside the Venture Track team, letting your team down along the way (i.e., dropping out) will lead to failing this class. Course choices are final after Session 1. Own Venture Track students who do not want to take the class for credit should announce this prior to the initial theory exam. You can also participate to receive an MCEI certificate instead of a grade as an Own Venture Track student or team. 

We are looking forward to seeing you in class!

 

Place and Time

Check the schedule for detailed information.

 

Assessment

Inside the Venture Track

  • Exam (20%) (individual)
  • Mid-term client presentation (20%) (team)
  • Final client presentation (20%) (team)
  • Final report (40%) (team) 

Own Venture Track

  • Exam (20%) (individual)
  • Mid-term own startup presentation (20%) (team)
  • Final own startup presentation (20%) (team)
  • Final business plan/report and continuous assessment (40%) (team) [2 performance appraisals along the way (status updates) of 5% each + 30% final documentation]

 

Persons in Charge

Course Coordinator: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Startup Consultants: Dr Bettina Müller, Nora Zybura

Supervising Professor: Prof. Dr. Michael Woywode

 

Course Load and Language

ECTS: 6

Language: English

 

Readings and Resources

Required Readings:

  • Ash Maurya (2016). Scaling Lean: Mastering the Key Metrics for Startup Growth

Course Materials All course material (where applicable) will be provided via the MCEI Group 'MAN 633 Entrepreneurial Spirit (Fall 2020)'. We will not use ILIAS for course materials in this class. We will use ILIAS to cunduct online exams. 

 

Additional Information

Please note: We will be taking pictures in some of the sessions of the course for documentation and marketing measures in the context of future courses and our MCEI formats. You will be asked to sign a relief form during the first session. If you do not want to sign the relief form, we kindly ask you to stay out of the camara focus. We will annouce, when we are taking pictures. 

 

Preliminary Schedule (Fall 2020). Please check back for updates.


September 28 | Online | 10am - 4pm (Update!)

Kick-off Session (Part 1) 
The session is an intensive workshop for all students of the course. Partner startups offering projects for the Inside the Venture Track will pitch potential projects. Own Venture Track students will also pitch their startups with the opportunity to scout Inside the Venture Track students for their projects as well. 

Note: Attendance required to participate in MAN 633 - no exceptions being made.

Attention: The kick-off will be held on Zoom. Make sure to register on Portal2 so we can contact you about the login details. You will receive the login details prior to the first session on your university email address. If you have trouble registering for the course, please contact the course administrator. 

 


September 29 - October 2 | Online (or at Cafe L3/ MCEI DesignLAB if situation permits) | Individual

First meetings 
We will have an individual meeting with all teams to kick of the projects. You will choose a slot from a list of appointment opportunites that suits you best. In the Own Venture track you will have the meeting only with us. In the Inside the Venture track the startup you will be working with, will also be at the meeting. You get all the details during the Kick-Off session.

 


September 30 | Online | 10am - 12pm

Kick-off Session (Part 2) 
In the second part of the Kick-off Session we will cover all the course content in lecture-style. This will get you started on core conceptes for your projects and the exam. 

 


October 13 | Online | 7:30pm - 10pm

Startup Lounge #79
Get-together in form our our Startup Lounge Series. 

 


October 20 | Online | 2pm - 5pm

Status Update (Own Venture Track only)
You will give us a short update about your progress so far. It is also an opportunity for you to practice and get feedback which you should incorporate until pitch. Only Own Venture Track students are required to attend this meeting. 

  


October 27 | Online | 7:30pm - 10pm

Startup Lounge #80
Get-together in form our our Startup Lounge Series. 

 


October 28 | Online | 6pm - 7pm

Exam
The short exam will cover the content of the lecture and the logic behind Ash Maurya's Scaling Lean book. 

 


November 2 - 6 | Online | Individual

Mid-Term Presentations (Inside the Venture Track only)
You will coordinate an individual meeting with us and your startup and will have a one hour slot to present your progress followd by Q&A. Only Inside the Venture Track students are required to attend this meeting. 

 


November 3 | Online | 4pm - 7pm

Mid-Term Presentations
Own Venture Track projects will pitch live in front of the whole course in a real pitch setting and get feedback from us and the other students. Inside the Venture Track students are also required to join the pitches. We and you will give the teams feedback which is invaluable for the teams to progress their startups. 

 


November 10 | Online | 7:30pm - 10pm

Startup Lounge #81
Get-together in form our our Startup Lounge Series. 

 


November 24 | Online | 2pm - 5pm

Status Update (Own Venture Track only)
You will give us a short update about your progress so far. It is also an opportunity for you to practice and get feedback which you should incorporate until your pitch. Only Own Venture Track students are required to attend this meeting. 

 


November 24 | Online | 7:30pm - 10pm

Startup Lounge #82
Get-together in form our our Startup Lounge Series. 

 


December 7 - 11 | Online | Individual

Project Presentations (Inside the Venture Track only)

You will coordinate an individual meeting with us and your startup and will have a one hour slot to present your progress followed by Q&A. Only Inside the Venture Track students are required to attend this meeting. 

 


December 8 | Online | 4pm - 7pm 

Pitches
Own Venture Track projects will pitch live in front of an expert jury. Afterwards we will have the final ceremony and celebrate in the context of the Startup Lounge Special. Inside the Venture Track students are also required to join the pitches. 

 


January 15, 2021 | 11:59pm

Your written documentation is due. No exceptions will be made! You are required to hand in your report to us and the startup via email. For us you can send it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For the startups you will check with them how they want it delivered. 

 


 

 

Contact

E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Sponsors

  • University of Mannheim
  • Institut für Mittelstandsforschung
  • Gründerverbund
  • ESF
  • Europäische Union
  • Baden-Württemberg - Ministerium für Finanzen und Wirtschaft
  • Absolventum