Saturday, January 8, 2011

Launching Tech Ventures: Part IV, Readings

This is the fourth of four posts about Launching Technology Ventures (LTV), a new MBA elective course I'm developing at Harvard Business School to explore lean startup management practices. Part I provides an overview of concepts covered in the course. Part II describes LTV's class sessions. Part III lists a set of tools and techniques that I think any MBA working in a tech venture should master.

[Addendum, Apr. 10, 2011: if you are interested in lean startup concepts, you should also check out the LTV course blog. Students write blog posts instead of taking an exam. They've done terrific work.]

Below, I've compiled a list of readings — mostly blog posts, but also some books — that cover topics relevant to my course, i.e., lean startup management practices, product marketing/management, and business development. I don't list readings on funding a startup, motivations for founding, or co-founder relationships. For readings on those topics, see my earlier compilation for web entrepreneurs.

Of course, learning-by-reading is no substitute for learning-by-doing — but almost everything on the list was written by people who work or invest in new ventures, so there's a lot of wisdom here. If I've missed valuable readings, please let me know in your comments below.

Lean Startup Concepts
Business Model Analysis
Product Management
Customer Conversion Funnel Analysis/Optimization
B2B Selling
Public Relations
Business Development
Recruiting/Organizational Issues
More Books and Tools
  • Do More Faster, edited by Brad Feld and David Cohen, compiles advice across a range of topics from TechStars entrepreneurs and mentors.
  • Founders at Work, by Y Combinator's Jessica Livingston, collects her interviews with two dozen founders relating their lessons learned.
  • Tom Hulme at IDEO has compiled and crowd-sourced a list of tools for tech startups, organized by function and company life cycle stage; a similar list compiled by Shyam Subramanyam; another list from Jaret Manuel; and my own list of free software tools for lean startups.