Business of Design

BUSINESS OF DESIGN COURSE SYLLABUS – SPRING 2012
with Maria & Christopher

1. THE BUSINESS OF DESIGN & THE DESIGN OF BUSINESS – Jan 18
Lecture:  Instructors’ introductions, overview of the course, class expectations and schedule; introduction to the startup challenge
2. RISK VS REWARD – Jan 25
Lecture:  Explanation of the risk versus reward dynamic that underlies all businesses; how businesses and business professionals seek to balance this; how trends influence risk and reward
3. – THE “WHY” OF BUSINESS (VISION & VALUES) – Feb 1
Lecture: Founding principles explain “why” the company needs to exist and how its success will change the world; principles unite diverse team members toward a shared goal
4. THE “WHO,” “WHAT” and “HOW” OF BUSINESS (Business Model) – Feb 8
Lecture: What is a business model and how is it created?
5. THE ART OF SELLING – Feb 15
Lecture: What is a pitch? What are the characteristics of a good pitch? Why is it important to understand who your audience is before you develop your pitch?
6. BRENDABUCKS Midpoint Pitch Feb 22
Lecture: Students pitch startup ideas to class
7. NON-PROFITS – Feb 29
Lecture: Everything you need to know about founding and running a non-profit
8. BRAND STRATEGY & EXPERIENCE DESIGN – Mar 7
Lecture: What is a brand strategy? What is brand experience? What are brand touch points? How does a brand experience create a competitive advantage?
9. EMPLOYEE EXPERIENCE (Culture & Hiring) – Mar 14
Lecture: A company’s internal culture should match its vision, values and the desires of its market; how to get hired
SPRING BREAK – Mar 21
10. MARKETING STARTEGY – Mar 28
Lecture: Essentials of new marketing and the role of social media
11. – LEADERSHIP – Apr 4
Lecture: Why leadership matters. Personal leadership v business leadership v brand leadership. EQ “soft leadership” skills
12. MONEY MATTERS (Budget) – Apr 11
Lecture:  Rules of thumb for small business budgeting; what is a revenue model? How to build an operating budget
13. LEGAL BASICS – Apr 18
Lecture: What’s the basic legal structure needed to start a company? What IP can or should be protected? What are the downsides of open or transparent management practices? Is sexual harassment really that big a deal?
14. DEMO DAY– Apr 25
Lecture: Each team will present their startup to audience and judges. Winners will be chosen; prizes awarded
15. DESIGNING A LIFE (Wrapup) – May 2
Lecture/Discussion: Work/life balance.
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02 Team Activities (Due on or before Jan 25): 
  • As a team, review the main points in  “http://www.innovativeteambuilding.co.uk/pages/articles/characteristics.htm.” Discuss honestly and openly your respective “Super Powers” and “Kryptonite” (where you have strength and where you might have weakness). Accept roles based on Team Roles instruction sheet on BaseCamp>Files>Week 1. You can change roles during this project, but we always need to know who is responsible for what.
 Individual Homework: (Due on or before Jan 25): 
Next week’s lecture will be on Risk vs. Reward. Our guest speaker will be Clement Mok. Clement is a legendary design entrepreneur and we are very honored to have him join us. Learn more about him here:
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03  Individual Homework: (Complete on or before Feb 1)
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04 Individual Homework: (Complete on or before Feb 8)
  • Read “Nest” by David Pogue
  • Read Porter’s “What is Strategy” (BaseCamp > Files>Week 4)
  • Read Skarzynski and Rowan’s “Innovating Across the Business Model” (BaseCamp>Files”>Week 4)
  • Blog on which business model area you find most challenging and why. What are you going to do to overcome this challenge

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05

  • Read Scott Berkun’s “How to Pitch
  • Review videos at Eleven Startup Pitches
  • Blog on your most favorite and your least favorite pitch from “Eleven Startup Pitches”– tell us what specifically you like about your most favorite pitch and what you dislike about your least favorite.
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06 Individual Homework (Complete on or before Feb 29):
  • Read Schumpeter’s “Why Companies Go Green
  • Read “How Great Companies Think Differently” (BaseCamp > File > Week 7)
  • Watch Cameron Sinclair TED video on “Open Source Architecture
  • Blog on 1-2 questions you would like to ask the founders of Architecture for Humanity.
  • Optional reading: Michael Porter’s “Creating Shared Value” (BaseCamp>File>Week 7)
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07
  • Read Edelman’s “Branding in the Digital Age” (on BaseCamp > Files Week 8)
  • Read VentureBeat’s “Design is Becoming the Competitive Advantage for Starups
  • Blog on a recent experience you had buying something and relate that experience to the “consumer decision journey” explained in Edelman’s article.
  • Optional Reading:  Schauer’s “Serious Service Sag.”
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08
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09 Individual Homework: (Complete on or before Mar 28):
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10 Individual Homework
 (Complete on or before Apr 4):

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11 Individual Homework (Complete on or before Apr 11):
  • Read “5 Tips for Patent Portfolio
  • Watch the historic debate between Larry Lessig and Jack Valenti on the “Future of Intellectual Property” (Sorry about video quality)
  • If your last names starts with A-M, blog on why Larry Lessig is right; if your last name starts with N-Z, blog on why Jack Valenti is right.
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12 Individual Homework
 (Complete on or before Apr 18):
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13 Individual Homework (Complete on or before Mon., Apr 23)
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14 Individual Homework (Complete on or before Wed., May 2)
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