This course is about building, running, and growing an organization. For many entrepreneurs, the most pressing questions (aside from those about financing) are about how to locate and recruit talented people, how to manage and keep them, and how to build a high-growth, long-term, sustainable firm. This course will address these questions and will provide you with a number of critical concepts and competencies that will be useful in both the short and long term. Throughout the course there will be a dual emphasis on thinking systematically and strategically about aspects of managing a rapidly growing organization, and on the actual implementation challenges associated with management and leadership.

The course is organized into three day-long modules: (1) How leaders, especially founders, play a critical role in shaping an organization's culture, (2) How to think analytically about designing organizational systems, and, (3) What needs to be done to build a successful organization for the long-term.  The primary course material will be a series of cases illustrating both successes and failures. You will also be provided with supplementary readings and lectures that will supply concepts and frameworks.  We will also hear from a series of guests who have founded, professionalized and grown entrepreneurial organizations to maturity.  

The course is evaluated through a final project in which students select a growth company, examine its decisions about strategy, execution and team and develop recommendations for sustaining growth.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge of how to . . .

  • think analytically about designing organizational systems from scratch
  • shape an organization's culture
  • build a successful organization for the long-term
  • improve the likelihood of personal success