This module considers the challenges faced by small firms that are aiming to become big ones. This is an integrative course that concentrates on the general management challenges facing founders or managers in entrepreneurial, high-growth and high-tech businesses.
The main objectives are to:
Give students an insight into what running an early stage growing business actually entails.
Provide an overview of the major strategic and operational issues that typically confront young growing businesses.
Provide frameworks for anticipating the likely growth issues in the business.
Topics covered include:
Barriers to growth and strategies to overcome them
Finance for high-growth enterprises – including cash management, funding growth
Organising for growth
Stakeholder perspectives in a growing business
Growth models, adaptation and evolution and managing transitions
Non-organic growth – e.g. roll-ups, buy/sell businesses
The course will draw on a range of case studies of ventures (not just high-technology) to illustrate the challenges of creating high potential enterprises.
Students are required to submit write-ups for two of the case studies (weeks 3 and 8) (50%). Students also need to form a team of 4 to research a real business and submit a report after the end of term (40%). At the last session students will make a presentation of their preliminary findings to the class – ungraded but feedback will be provided to help the final report. A mark for class contribution to encourage participation in the extensive case discussions also contributes to the final mark (10%).
A selection of case studies and readings distributed with the course pack.