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Entrepreneurship 1B: Make Your Idea a Reality

Career Pathway Course Units

Unit 1: The Business Plan

Starting a new business is an exciting time! Entrepreneurs get energized by the prospect of embarking on a new business venture. But how do you turn your business idea into a reality? In this course, you’ll master the steps of this creation process, and by the time you conclude this course, you will have a completed plan for your new business idea. Working through this course will guide you to complete each section of a business plan by customizing it for your own business concept. By following the activities outlined throughout the course, you’ll assemble a plan that includes all major parts of a new business venture. This will produce a valuable document that you can use to help you start your business, and it will continue to help you along the way as you reevaluate markets, trends, and your business performance.

Unit 2: The Risks in Business

There are always risks when starting a new business venture. Regardless of the type of business you intend to start, there will always be risks, challenges, and the possibility your business will not succeed. Sometimes business risks are internal and within your power, but often the risks are external–that is, they’re completely outside your ability to control. Entrepreneurs work hard to identify the biggest risks to business success and then make plans to minimize the potential impact of those risks on the business. Because entrepreneurs can never completely avoid risk, we need to focus on how best to manage those risks, and we need to determine how best to deal with other challenges that come along with owning and operating a business.

Unit 3: Growing the Business with People

To this point, you’ve successfully launched your business and are working toward achieving your business goals. Now you must turn your focus to growing the company and elevating your financial objectives. In order to grow, most entrepreneurs need to add talented people to their teams. This important activity relies on recruiting, organizing, training, and keeping excellent employees. This can give your business a competitive advantage over other companies. To achieve this, there are important human resources and management practices that will help you to build a strong team and to grow your business. By focusing on the most valuable resource of your business—people—you can boost your productivity and your company’s performance.

Unit 4: Marketing the Business

For a small business to achieve success, it must connect with its customers. Marketing is the part of business that focuses on getting your company’s offerings and messages to the people who buy them. By using different media and messages to communicate, you can connect with your market and keep customers informed. In today’s competitive business environment, effective marketing is necessary and, without it, no small business can succeed. A strong marketing effort can create loyalty with your customers and give you an edge over the competition. There are several different components to marketing that will be covered in this course, but they’ll all focus on the most important person in your business—the customer.

Unit 5: Marketing Your Products

People purchase products to address their specific needs and wants. An important part of marketing is managing what products you offer to your target customers—and how. These offerings may be tangible products or intangible services, both of which provide value to customers—either to fulfill a need, satisfy a want, or both. Marketing a product includes a wide range of activities, including development, launch, and ensuring people understand what it is and how to use it. But efforts to market the product do not stop after the product becomes available to customers. The process continues through the stages of a product’s life cycle. From idea to launch and beyond, product marketing is a key part of the small business marketing function.