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Course 2021-2022 a.y.

20760 - CORPORATE ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Department of Management and Technology

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 31

IM (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07)
Course Director:
MARKUS VENZIN

Classes: 31 (I sem.)
Instructors:
Class 31: MARKUS VENZIN


Suggested background knowledge

Previous courses in strategy, marketing, and entrepreneurship are a plus for the course, although not required.


Mission & Content Summary
MISSION

You do not frequently run into entrepreneurs in large, complex organizations. They are not attracted by all the rules, procedures, and hierarchies. They prefer to work in small, agile firms or start their own venture. If they end up in big firms, it is usually due to a recruiting mistake or the young entrepreneur’s belief that it is less costly to make the big mistakes somewhere else and start her own venture afterwards. But soon salaries become better, and risk-tolerance lower, as the motivation to leave the safe corporate world. And hey, you can still be an entrepreneur in a large firm, can’t you? Yes, you can! A key trait of entrepreneurs is that they act even if outcomes are uncertain – they like to explore. Bureaucrats instead are good at organizing a large amount of people that need to work together but hate uncertainty – they like to exploit. The challenge large firms have is to combine exploitation with exploration and (1) hire people with entrepreneurial drive and create a culture that boosts their entrepreneurial energy; (2) reduce market-related uncertainties with modern market research tools and technological understanding; (3) develop processes that reduce uncertainties to the extent that the energy entrepreneurs have to follow-up on their ideas is high enough. If the market uncertainty (how will clients react to this?) and firm uncertainty (how will my colleagues react to this?) is low, managers are more likely to act. This course addresses these issues.

CONTENT SUMMARY

We will study how pressure for more sustainability and the promise of digital and more in general tech transformation forces mature companies to embrace activities of corporate entrepreneurship, either through developing ideas from inside the firm or by engaging with start-ups early enough to team up with them. Corporate entrepreneurship initiatives grow if there is a high level of entrepreneurial energy able to offset the limiting drive coming from market and firm uncertainties.

This course shows how firms with higher levels of corporate entrepreneurship:

  1.             Increase entrepreneurial energy by selecting employees with entrepreneurial drive and by creating a culture that supports the creation and implementation of innovative ideas.
  2.             Reduce market-related uncertainty (i.e., it is unclear if the entrepreneurial idea finds acceptance in the market) by investing in capabilities to segment the market, forecast trends and understand customer needs. Obviously, the higher the market turbulence the higher is the market-related uncertainty.
  3.             Reduce firm-related uncertainty (i.e., it is unclear how good ideas are supported by the firm) by reducing:
    a.     Communicative uncertainty: Managers need to make sure their ideas are recognized as opportunities. They need to package their ideas and convince others. But often it is not clear what types of innovative ideas are legitimized as entrepreneurial opportunity. And how should ideas be presented? What is the right format? When can I submit the ideas? Who should I send then to? If these and related issues are unclear, individuals will eventually give up, unless they have a lot of entrepreneurial energy;
    b.     Behavioral uncertainty: Resources need to be allocated to good ideas. The key question now is: does the selection process identify valuable opportunities and allocate sufficient resources to them? Behavioral uncertainty arises when the actions of managers involved in that process do not fully reveal their true intent. For example, as entrepreneurs seek to get approval for and legitimize entrepreneurial opportunities, they might fear losing control and ownership of their ideas if they share them with others. Intrapreneurs might withhold information about the ideas they are exploring. Another example of behavioral uncertainty is when HQ managers fear that opportunities are presented in an ‘overconfident’ manner to get managers’ attention and support and thus win the race against competing internal proposals from other subsidiaries. Frequently, it is difficult to determine the true value of an idea at this early stage of the analysis and the HQ managers might hedge against intrapreneurs’ purposeful distortion of data to increase the attractiveness of the proposal.
    c.     Value uncertainty: How are the benefits of entrepreneurial ideas shared? Issues of value appropriation, international commercialization, transfer pricing, and the application of incentive schemes get important on the individual and unit-level. Will the innovation yield entrepreneurial rents? And if yes, how do we solve credit assignment problems in the process? Entrepreneurs need to know what rewards they can expect if they engage in innovation processes.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILO)
KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING
At the end of the course student will be able to...

As a result of this course, students will be able to:

−      Understand the need for more corporate entrepreneurship;

−      Understand the shape and dynamics of corporate entrepreneurship;

−      Know how to:

  •  Increase entrepreneurial energy in mature companies;
  •  Reduce market uncertainties to facilitate entrepreneurial initiatives;
  •  Reduce organizational uncertainties to facilitate entrepreneurial initiatives.
APPLYING KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING
At the end of the course student will be able to...

Students will be able to accelerate corporate entrepreneurship in established firms. 


Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face lectures
  • Guest speaker's talks (in class or in distance)
  • Case studies /Incidents (traditional, online)
  • Individual assignments
  • Group assignments
  • Interactive class activities (role playing, business game, simulation, online forum, instant polls)
DETAILS

Classes will blend lecture-style class with group discussion and groupworks. Students are required to arrive prepared for the class having read the materials provided for the session, to enable a productive discussion about the topics covered.


Assessment methods
  Continuous assessment Partial exams General exam
  • Written individual exam (traditional/online)
  •     x
  • Group assignment (report, exercise, presentation, project work etc.)
  •     x
    ATTENDING STUDENTS

      The evaluation method will help students to reflect upon and improve their capability to accelerate innovation in large firms. The evaluation method consist of two components: 1. Individual final exam* 100%; 2. Collection of individual notes**: up to 3 extra points
    * A 60 min open book exam covering the entire course program.
    ** The collection of your short notes (max 1 page per note, single spaced, TNR 12) that you have reviewed after completion of the course, to be handed in 2 weeks after the last session of the course. The notes to be delivered are marked in the syllabus. The points are assigned as follows:
    − 0 points: notes not delivered
    − 1 point: notes partially delivered (not all the notes are delivered)
    − 2 points: all notes delivered
    − 3 points: all notes delivered, with outstanding content / quality

    NOT ATTENDING STUDENTS

    The evaluation method will help students to reflect upon and improve their capability to accelerate innovation in large firms. The evaluation method consist of two components: 1. Individual final exam* 100%; 2. Collection of individual notes**: up to 3 extra points
    * A 60 min open book exam covering the entire course program.
    ** The collection of your short notes (max 1 page per note, single spaced, TNR 12) that you have reviewed after completion of the course, to be handed in 2 weeks after the last session of the course. The notes to be delivered are marked in the syllabus. The points are assigned as follows:
    − 0 points: notes not delivered
    − 1 point: notes partially delivered (not all the notes are delivered)
    − 2 points: all notes delivered


    Teaching materials
    ATTENDING STUDENTS

    All mandatory readings

    NOT ATTENDING STUDENTS

    Mandatory and suggested readings as basis for exam

    Last change 09/09/2021 08:06