Entrepreneurship Resource Nights: Startup Strategy

Entrepreneurship Resource Nights: Vision and PurposeEach week you can read a recap of the previous Entrepreneurship Resource Nights (Business Plan Practicum) session. This week, instructor John Zagula (founder, Ignition Capital) lead a class featuring Castbox CEO and Founder Xiaoyu Wang and DocuSign Founder Tom Gonser.


“In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable” – Dwight D. Eisenhower


We covered a lot in this session. Having previously learned how to do our homework and study the playing field, we moved on to figuring how to get from one end of the field to another. In other words, strategy. We define strategy as “driving a desired future in conditions of uncertainty.”

We examined several approaches to such strategy including FAKE GRIMLOCK, Geoffrey Moore’s Crossing the Chasm from initial enthusiasts to the mainstream, and some other jokers who invented go to market plays like Stealth, Best of Both and Dragrace.

We then learned from Castbox CEO and Founder Xiaoyu Wang all about the importance of going where others aren’t and doing what others aren’t doing. Wang also spoke about listening hard for and following the key trend that is moving a market. From Docusign Founder Tom Gonser we learned of the importance of focus and simplicity and adapting plays fearlessly as the field shifts over time from early adopters to mainstreet. From both of them we learned about SPEED (and relentless change and hard work) as key differentiators for new businesses.

We also covered some important logistics including:

Alaska Airlines Environmental Innovation Challenge: February 19 applications are due, April 3 is the actual EIC competition

There is also a Consumer Product Workshop on March 2 from 9-1, Register for this by 2/26


Resource Nights are each Thursday starting January 10 from 6 to 7:50 p.m. in PACCAR Hall 192 (Shansby Auditorium). Can’t make it in person? Lectures will be recorded and the links posted to our website weekly. View the Resource Night schedule for links and complete listing of topics and guest speakers.


Thursday, February 14 at 6:00 pm in PACCAR Hall, Shansby Auditorium (room 192)

We are going to be talking all about strategy with CEO strategists no less! We are in the second part of the second part, which involves going from analysis to decision making. Guest(s) include Steven Hooper, Founder and CEO of Kigo Kitchen and Shanis Windland, CFO of Heptio, which was recently acquired by VMWare.

Reminder, you can drop-in or catch the recording of this weekly course.


Hollomon Health Innovation Challenge: Terri Butler
Alaska Airlines Environmental Innovation Challenge: Lauren Brohawn – Reminder the deadline to apply is February 19!
Dempsey Startup Competition (formerly UW Business Plan Competition): Sarah Studer

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