SBE 440 Small Business Entrepreneur All Discussions Week 1-7
Week 1 DQ 1
Why should small business owners and entrepreneurs spend time planning for their business when creating the business takes so much effort?
Does failing to plan mean that one plans to fail?
Week 1 DQ 2
What is the necessary requirement to turn a business idea into a business? If you don’t have customers willing to buy your new product or service at a price that gives you a profit, do you really have a business?
Week 2 DQ 1
Peter Lynch (a legendary investment fund manager) once said that he wouldn’t invest in a company unless he could explain its business in five minutes or less to his 12 year old son. Why is the 60 second elevator pitch so important?
How might you explain a high-tech idea to someone who is not tech savvy?
Week 2 DQ 2
Is there any business that has no competitors?
If your business is so attractive, why aren’t others already in it?
Week 3 DQ 1
What are the differences between products and services that are needs rather than wants?
How do you know if a potential customer is ready to buy?
Week 3 DQ 2
How do high tech companies (e.g. Apple, Microsoft, Dell, and HP) promote new products to generate maximum customer interest?
Can you promote the scarcity of initial products as a sales gimmick?
Week 4 DQ 1
For the business you chose, what form of ownership seems best? Why? Discuss the pros and cons of the alternative forms of ownership that lead to your decision.
Does a corporation really mitigate legal risks to the operator of the business? If so, how are the risks mitigated? What risks remain?
Week 4 DQ 2
Assuming that you do not possess all of the skills to carry out every business function, which management skill would you acquire first, and why?
What are the advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing key management functions, such as marketing and finance?
Week 5 DQ 1
For your specific business, what is the single most important operating decision you need to make before startup?
If you produce a product, does it have value as an intellectual property? If so, how can you protect it?
Week 5 DQ 2
Define 24 key operating metrics that can help control your operation. What are the industry standards for these metrics?
How will you balance your time between new product or service innovations and current operational controls?
A couple factors that should be kept track of in the landscaping industry are customer satisfaction, gross profit per month, attitude of client after job, and job delivery. These are important to make sure that the business is getting work done properly, on budget, and on time. Keeping customers happy is very important and discussing the services the company provides can help determine if any issues exist between the customers and the employees.
Week 6 DQ 1
I plan to open a small specialty cupcake bakery in an area with little apparent competition. My market research suggests that I can reach a sales level of $650,000 the first year. My products sell at an average of $3.75 per piece. The above assumptions imply an output of about 48 dozen per day. What are the operational possibilities of reaching this sales level? Why or why not?
Week 6 DQ 2
Suppose you are approached by an interested investor to buy your business. Do you know how to value your business to be able to respond? How do you determine the value of your business? Might you work for an investor who bought your business? Why or why not?
Week 7 DQ 1
The most interesting (or most challenging) information I found was ___.
If you provide a truly new product or service, where did you find relevant financial information?
Week 7 DQ 2
Compare your plan to one you found online (provide specific website reference).
If you had six months to do the plan, what would you have spent the most time developing?