I had the plessure today to be invited by Dr Shuyuan Wu as a guest lecture for a undergrad paper at AUT in Innovation and Entrepreneurship. One of the objectives of the paper was for students to generate a business idea and present it in front of a panel – just like Dragons Den. I used my own company, Transfercar, as a case study to demonstrate how an idea was turned into a new venture.
I was amazed with the quality and diversity of the ideas that these students have generated – but gee – what happend to good old fashioned market research? Not that the student have not done any market research – they had been told to identify their competitors and estimate the market potential – simple Google research – but none have actually been out getting their hands dirty. None have actually been out talking to real people – real customers – real suppliers.
I guess it is not the students fault – but maybe academics should spend less time teaching students how to do regression and Porter’s 5 forces – and spend more time teaching them how to use their network and communicate with people – because at the end of the day – isnt that what entrepreneurs do.