How I arrived at this course?
It was in July 2012, when a twitter status message of one of my Romanian friend led me to the discovery of MOOC.That was the time, when I was trying to figure out how to achieve better knowledge as part of my ‘Zero Cost MBA(Global Manager for 21st Century)’ project. I have already tried few OCW (Open course wares) from top universities to gain knowledge different fields and loved the experience. To me MOOC looked the next steps of OCW, so I was very eager to try this. And when I heard about ‘Technology Entrepreneurship’ from Stanford University, it was tempting enough to enroll in these .
This was one of the first MOOCs I have taken. There was no specific reason for taking this course. I wanted to try the new platform as well as wanted to see how things are done in Silicon Valley, as mentioned in the course description.
Why I took this course?
Although I had some prior experience in entrepreneurship from by handling some of the family business during my summer vacations in early school days, it was not sufficient enough to meet current requirements. During my engineering education, I got exposure towards fund-raising, marketing and budgeting analysis through my participation in co-curricular activities. I have also helped some start-ups especially on strategy parts of their business plans. So I had skills in different areas of business but they were not sufficient to assess a business idea on the practical scale. In certain sense, I did not know how to assess entire business cycle at one place. That’s what this course has actually offered along with team based assignment, discussion forum and even assigning a mentor.
- Experiences with the course
So, did this course match my expectations? Certainly, yes! Despite a bumpy road at the start of the course, it was an enjoyable ride. Let me share some of my experiences:
It was difficult to find out team mates,committed enough to finish entire course. I have joined a team, but people never interacted. Then I have joined another team, where we had problems of time zone. This trend continued with 5-6 teams. Most of the time, I have met people who already have business or working full time. Through this course, they wanted to join another business without putting more efforts. Finally, in the middle of the course, I managed to find some better team mates and used concepts learn in this course on their existing idea. The idea did not materialize for starting a business, but I enjoyed working on value preposition analysis, market survey and risk assessments for a given business idea.
We were able to use ‘Omnihours’, a website launched alongside this course to promote better interactions among the classmates. But for me, it turned out to be a good exercise to kill lot of my ideas. I met people more intelligent than me to judge ideas, providing their valuable feedback and how it can be improved. This is an extra effort than regular assignment and I truly enjoyed it.
This course have given me a technical framework enabling me to talk to anyone around the globe on business ideas to approve or reject within a very short duration of time. Certainly, this was a ‘virtual brain storming’ place.
Thank you Prof. Chuck Esley and Stanford University for this informative course.
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