An MBA entrepreneurship & innovation syllabus needs to map out a journey of skill-building, analysis, and experience that prepares students for careers as entrepreneurs, family-business owners, or intrapreneurs in corporate environments.
We built our MBA entrepreneurship & innovation syllabus by scaffolding deliberate practice on top of theory; this experience forces students to test the classroom learning by engaging real customers with real ideas and real solutions.
This sample syllabus lays out a skills-based, experiential journey during which students develop the mindset and skillset to create value as they launch innovative projects at work!
Entrepreneurial Skills at the MBA Level
An MBA entrepreneurship and innovation course, done well, helps students gain transferable skills they can use to create significant value in their workplace! These skills are particularly important as students learn their industry, work their way up the proverbial corporate ladder, and eventually perhaps launch a venture as they develop a network and expertise.
Through experiential exercises focused on leveraging failure and developing a growth mindset, students in classes using our MBA entrepreneurship & innovation syllabus develop resilience. Success on the first attempt is rare, so being able to fall and get back up will serve students well; having the resilience to push through obstacles is more important than developing good ideas. But good ideas count too!
Our syllabus equips students with the skills necessary to discover ideas that bring them meaning. Once they have that idea, we guide them through identifying, locating, and interviewing their Early Adopters. The most critical skill entrepreneurs must learn is interviewing customers. The exercises in our MBA entrepreneurship & innovation syllabus guide students through learning what to ask customers, iteratively practicing customer interviews, and analyzing interviews to guide their business model iteration.
Once students identify a problem they want to solve and potential customers who experience that problem, we turn them to finding a solution worth building. This is where our curriculum really shines for the MBA students! They practice design thinking as they develop solutions based on customers’ problems. Students learn to effectively monetize solutions by building a viable financial model. We then turn their focus to prototyping new versions of their product to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least effort, and to planning and running effective business model experiments. Overall, this journey provides students with a toolkit of skills that effectively and efficiently prepares students for success in the corporate or startup world.
Experiential Learning Matters
When building our MBA entrepreneurship & innovation syllabus, here are a few key things we learned from surveying our community of nearly 10,000 entrepreneurship educators:
- MBA students want to know how to apply what they are learning in class; they want to practice skills. In this course, your students will practice skills such as problem-solving, customer interviewing, and prototyping that will help them create value in the organization they have or will found, or in the organization at which they are employed.
- MBA students are likely to work a full-time job, and many have a variety of other family and community responsibilities beyond that. Take the opportunity right away to show these students that the skills and experiences they will be exposed to can create value in all those roles they juggle in their lives.
- MBA students want their learning to be real. Make it real by adding “real” voices to your classroom – invite experienced entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs into your classroom as guest speakers and judges.
Get the MBA Entrepreneurship & Innovation Sample Syllabus
We’ve created a detailed MBA Entrepreneurship & Innovation sample syllabus that details the components of a full semester course.
It’s free for any/all entrepreneurship teachers, so you’re welcome to share it.
Want 15 Weeks of Lesson Plans?
We’ve done the work for you. Check out the Experiential Entrepreneurship Curriculum