Entrepreneur

Open source entrepreneurship: Free resources to help kickstart your startup

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Image Credit: Shutterstock

This post comes to us from startup guru Steve Blank. 

One of the great things about being a retired entrepreneur is that I get to give back to the community that helped me. I assembled this collection of free and almost free tools, class syllabi, presentations, books, lectures, videos in the hope that it can make your path as an entrepreneur or educator easier.
Free:
Startup Tools

If you’re building a startup, the Startup Tools tab on my blog has curated links to hundreds of startup resources.  Specific links are:

  • A list of startup tools is here
  • Market research tools to help you figure out the size of the opportunity your startup is pursuing, are here
  • Some of the best advice on founding and running a startup from other smart voices are here

Updates and suggestions for tools I’ve missed are welcomed on the Startup Tools comments page.

The Lean LaunchPad course online

I teach potential founders a hands-on, experiential class called the Lean LaunchPad at Berkeley, Stanford, Columbia and Caltech. The class teaches the three basic skills all entrepreneurs need to know:

  • Business model design
  • Customer development
  • Agile engineering

For my  Innovation Corps class for the National Science Foundation it made sense to record the lectures and put them online. In my regular classes I now “flip” the classroom and have my students watch these online lectures as homework and we use the class time for discussion.

The free on-line class, hosted at Udacity is here.

Class Syllabi, My Lecture Slides and Student Presentations

The Slides/Video tab on my blog has all the open source course material for my classes.  Specific links are:

  • Syllabi for all my classes are here
  • Educators Training Guide is here (it’s part of the Educators Course where we teach how to design a Lean Entrepreneurship Curriculum and how to teach the Lean LaunchPad class – described in the Educators section below.)
  • Latest presentations posted click here
  • Stanford presentations, lectures and syllabus here
  • Berkeley presentations, lectures and syllabus here
  • Columbia 5-day presentations, lectures and syllabus here
  • Caltech 5-day presentations, lectures and syllabus here
  • For some general customer development slides, click here

The Entrepreneur’s Checklist

The good folks at Udemy have taken a few of my lectures at Stanford and put them together in a series online.

The free on-line lectures, hosted at Udemy are here.

Online Guide to How to Build a Startup: The Lean LaunchPad

Startupplays.com, publisher of online entrepreneurs processes guides, drew from my Udacity course and The Startup Owner’s Manual to create a free step-by-step guide to understanding your customers and creating your value proposition. Called “How to Build a Startup: The Lean LaunchPad,” it walks you through the Business Model Canvas and an overview of the customer development process.

Find it here.

Videos

The Slides/Video tab on my blog has a number of my talks on entrepreneurship, customer development, and startup, some short, some long, and a few interesting. Find them here.

Recommended Reading

The “books for startups” tab on the top of this page is my recommended reading list. These books have influenced my thinking. There’s a short synopsis of why I like each book.

Updates and suggestions for books that I’ve missed are welcomed on the books comment page.

Visitors Guide to Silicon Valley

I got tired watching dignitaries fly into Silicon Valley, visit Google, Facebook, Apple, and Stanford and then say they understand startups and entrepreneurship. So for the rest of us I put together this Visitors Guide to Silicon Valley.

Updates and suggestions for places to see that I’ve missed are welcomed on the Guide comments page.

Secret History of Silicon Valley

What began as a hobby of mine – research in the intersection of my military, intelligence and Silicon Valley careers combined with my interest in the history of Silicon Valley and technology entrepreneurship – ended up in this video and PowerPoint presentation. I first gave the Secret History of Silicon Valley presentation as an invited talk at Google, then at the Computer History Museum.

When I gave the talk to audience of CIA staffers, they asked how I came up with the talk, so I wrote a series of posts as the back-story that can be found here.

I still love giving this talk to people who lived it and people curious about it.

Almost Free:

Startup Weekend Next

Startup Weekend Next is a three-week version of the Lean LaunchPad class with hands-on instructors and mentors – offered in hundreds of cities around the world.

  • The class is organized, led and delivered by Startup Weekend, the global non-profit that teaches entrepreneurs how to launch a startup in 54 hours.
  • TechStars and Startup America are partnering to provide mentors in the U.S.

They don’t ask for equity and charge just enough to cover the costs of pizza and the room rental. Sign up here.

The Lean LaunchPad Educators Course

Hosted by NCIIAStanford University and U.C. Berkeley, Jerry Engel and I teach a course for educators interested in learning how to update and revise their entrepreneurship curriculum for the 21st century as well as learning how to teach the Lean LaunchPad class.

The Lean LaunchPad Educators Training Guide here is part of this course.

Next class is Jan 30th. Click here for more information.

The Startup Owner’s Manual

The Startup Owners Manual written with Bob Dorf, has become the step-by-step reference manual for anyone even thinking about a startup. Each section offers detailed guidance and how-to’s, helping you make your way through the Customer Development process using MVP’s and pivots as you search for a business model.

Last month we added a Kindle version, reorganized to make it easier to follow on a tablet and incorporating hundreds of links to websites, blog posts, and presentations.

The Founder’s Workbook

Zoomstra, the publisher of online workbooks offers The Founders Workbook to help you track and monitor your progress through every step of the Customer Development process. It takes the static 57 checklists from The Startup Owner’s Manual and makes them dynamic and accessible by putting them online as an interactive checklist. Use it to keep your team on track and ensure you have completed each critical task as you search for a scalable business model.

Click here for more information.

The Four Steps to The Epiphany

The Four Steps to the Epiphany has been described as the book that launched the Lean Startup movement. The book is still relevant today as when it was written. The last two chapters deal with scale and management of growing startups.

Now get out of the building and make something happen!

This post initially appeared on Steve Blank’s blog. Blank is a retired serial entrepreneur now teaching entrepreneurship at UC Berkeley, Stanford, and Columbia.


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