About The Course
This course is applicable to anyone in any setting who wants to improve their ability to generate winning entrepreneurial ideas and shape them for success.
While the course nomenclature will align most directly to high-technology for-profit new product ideas, its content is also applicable to all types of entrepreneurs, engineers, technology transfer offices, garage start-up companies, venture capital firms, angel investors, low-tech-no-tech ideas, not-for-profit ideas, lifestyle businesses, and social entrepreneurship.
Launching an engineered
product based on hard-science, research, and patents takes an average of 3 to 5
years with $5 to $10 million dollars at stake.
Hard-science technology products
are profoundly different than information
technology products, such as websites and apps, e.g., that can be
prototyped in a weekend, tested with little risk of death or destruction, and easily
improved or pivoted with software revisions.
Given the time and money
involved, the exponentially ratcheting costs of changes, and an often-underrepresented
appreciation of critical market factors, the commercialization process for
R&D-based ideas deserves a front-end framework.
Despite this obvious
rationale, the road of startup companies and new products is littered with
failures because the idea had no rudder
during the early concept stage. Given
the complexity of possible offerings, a general enthusiasm for certain
priorities and disregard for others; lack of discussion around the purpose of
the undertaking; little consideration for how success will be measured; and a natural
tendency to avoid obstacles, a team often jumps in over enthusiastically toward
a commercial market, spending months (or years) and thousands of dollars (or
millions) committed to a pathway that latter turns out to be stunted by
In this course, we will delve
into the most fundamental question every entrepreneur should ask themselves
right up front: “Why am I doing this?”
The need for an Innovation Creed
applies to any scenario: from garage start-up to new product development to
radical business development to mergers and acquisitions.
While the subtleties of failures
are infinite, the general categories are quite small. Sixteen top challenges stunting technology
commercialization will be presented and then built into an Idea Filter that helps force-rank a portfolio of ideas, screen
ideas for strong and weak points, prioritize next critical action, and shape
ideas to maximize their chance of success and alignment with the Creed.
• Welcome to the technology commercialization revolution!
• Foundational starting point: Your Innovation CreedWeek Two
• Top reasons why commercializing technology is so difficultWeek Three
• Turning those challenges into an Idea FilterWeek Four
• Customizing Your Idea Filter: the best ideas for your particular Creed
• Examples of various Filters for differing dimensions of Creed
• A sneak-peak at Part Two: Using the Filter to Optimize Ideas for Success.
There is no required or
suggested prerequisite reading needed to understand the course content.
The class will consist of lecture videos,
which are between 8 and 12 minutes in length. These contain 1
integrated quiz question per video. There will also be exercises and activities that are submitted as well as online quizzes.
You do not need “ideas” to
participate; actual idea screening will not occur in this course (that is the focus of Part 2). Nonetheless, having a collection of new business
and/or new product ideas in the back of your mind will be helpful.
Additionally, the following
Background knowledge in
hard-science, engineered products: pharmaceuticals
and biologics; implantable and disposable medical devices; laboratory, hospital
and industrial equipment; military systems; telecommunication and computer
hardware; traditional and alternative energy products; etc.
A general working knowledge
of (or desire to learn more about) such things as: the process behind new product development; improving the concept stage
of ideas; portfolio management; managing
creative thinking; tools for problem-solving and decision-making; etc.