Preface of Textbook
About the Textbook
About the Authors
Book Website at McGraw-Hill
DVD Contents
Stanford 1e Book Website
McGraw-Hill 1e Book Website
Book Contents
Table of Contents
Venture Opportunity, Concept and Strategy
Venture Formation and Planning
Functional Planning of the Venture
Financing and Building the Venture
  Business Plans (App. A)
  Case Studies (App. B)
Online Sources (App. C)
Sample Syllabus
Course Overview
Calendar of Sessions
Entrepreneurial Perspective
Idea or Opportunity
Gathering Resources
Managing Ventures
Entrepreneurship and You
Additional Resources
Schools Using This Textbook
Authors Blog

Many people believe that those quick to act will win the race while the slow and deliberate will trail behind. The decision to be the first mover needs to be addressed by all entrepreneurs. Using an idealized model of a window of opportunity, the entrepreneur can decide when to act. The entrepreneur needs to maintain a sense of urgency but avoid being too early or too late to market. Entrepreneurs establish and build a network of partners who work with them to achieve the new venture’s goals. This partnership or set of alliances will include suppliers, customers, complementors, and often competitors. Entrepreneurs also seek to build an innovation strategy that involves new technologies, ideas, and creativity that lead to invention and ultimately commercialization. An innovation strategy is part of most new firms’ road map to success. A firm that encourages creativity and inventiveness can create the ingredients of sustained innovation.

Atheros Communications
Atheros Communications is a Silicon Valley start-up that has designed a chipset for wireless local area network (WLAN) products that conform to the 802.11a standard. Atheros has a 6- to 12-month lead over competitors developing similar chipsets. This case examines strategic challenges confronting Atheros: How can it best exploit its lead? How can it promote customer adoption of products that provide performance breakthroughs but lack backward compatibility? As a start-up with limited credibility and resources, how can it influence standards-setting processes dominated by large companies? Given short product life cycles, how should it focus future R&D efforts?
Airify Communications: The Wireless Router Company
Describes the challenges facing a startup company who must manage strategic partners to create a whole product, and who must make tradeoffs between adding product functions and meeting its deadlines in shipping the first generation product. The team was contemplating two options: 1) ship the 4-protocol product on schedule and keep to current budget; 2) delay for at least 6 weeks, develop GPS technology, and ship the 5-protocol product.

Guidant: Radiation Therapy
Describes a potential new approach to treating cardiac disease--radiation therapy. Guidant, a leading medical device maker, faces a choice about whether to pursue this new and risky technology, and if so, with what strategy. Teaching Purpose: Dimensions of entrepreneurship in the larger corporate context.

(DVD Section 5.4) Bob Sutton: Two Weird Ideas that Work
Bob illustrates two examples from his book: encourage people to ignore and defy superiors and peers, and don't try to learn anything from people who say they have solved the same problems you face.
(DVD Section 5.8) Pam Marrone: Navigating AgraQuest's Value Chain
Pam faced a lot of skepticism and obstacles while developing their products. She overcame these barriers by demonstrating the effectiveness of her product on the fields for the farmers as well as hiring hungry dogs as salespeople to push the product into the market.
Jerry Kaplan: The Best Time to Start a Company is When Nobody Thinks it's Possible
Most people will work on an idea for a company for 2-3 yrs before they get the money. Develop the idea, get prototype together before raising the money. The best time to start a company according to Jerry is when everybody thinks it is impossible. He thinks this is a terrific time to start an internet company.

Vinod Khosla: Technology as Driver of Change
My view of the role of technology-driven entrepreneurship has not changed in the past years. I continue to believe that technology will have a bigger and bigger impact on life, society and the economy. At every level, we will be driven almost completely by technology in terms of the change that will happen. There are other changes, but less radical. Technology is a consistent driver of change, and there is a role for startups. Technology will continue to be a bigger part of the GNP for the next foreseeable future, until we decide that progress and efficiency aren't important...I also believe that most of the environmental issues have technology-driven solutions, whether it is energy, population, water, food.


Heidi Roizen: Timing is Everything
Timing is everything when starting a company. Mobius raised their money in good time and have a lot of gas in the tank. Some companies needed money in June 2001 when people were not answering phone calls ... bad timing.

John Thompson: Pervasiveness and Execution - Staying Ahead of Competitors
Amateur hackers are mainly knowledgeable about the windows environment. But professional hackers can hack into anything. Symantec welcomes the giants like Intel and Microsoft into the space. According to John, the Netscape phenomenon was a product of the arrogance of youth that is not prevalent in the country boys at Symantec!!
Judy Estrin: History of Packet Design - Importance of Adapting
The history of Packet Design and how it adapted to the downturn in the economy. Packet Design started in 2000 as a technology company with the idea of bringing researchers and developers together with the notion that they would work on 5-6 things and either spin out or license technologies. This model was successful for 3 years, but after that more money was needed as there was no licensing business.
Steve Jurvetson: How should startups adapt to changing times?
Companies today need to be nimble and adaptable to the changing environment and market around them. Being nimble is important. The second skill is to think through when you're going to ship your product. If you think about the innovation; is it a 2x improvement, is it a 10x improvement? Think about what the market will be when you ship your product. If you have a four-year development cycle, youwill have a physical product that's going to be a very different world you're entering in than if you enter in today. Being open to learning about interdisciplinary things involves a willingness to ask dumb questions. And, finally, it's important to realize that the longevity of companies is shorter today than ever before. Eventually all companies die. Just give it a billion years; you think long enough it's going to happen, even the Microsoft. And the question is just where on that spectrum you are - how do you think about organizational form, federation of people, and the business structure? Most of all, companies must embrace change, plan for change, and view it as an opportunity.
Fresh Start 2002: Weird Ideas that Work
Innovation is key to success, and people want it to happen in their organizations. Yet, so many find it difficult to part with deeply ingrained beliefs and practices about how to treat people, make decisions and structure work. Sutton brings to light how to generate and capitalize on new ideas by doing what is counter-intuitive.


Copyright 2004-2007 Stanford University. All Rights Reserved.