Getting Real With Experiential: Get Your Students Launched in the Very Next Entrepreneurship Course You Teach


  • David R. Rahn
  • Michael Rehg


The focus of this paper is on the university incubator and classroom adoption of the “Lean” business start-up framework popularized by Silicon Valley serial entrepreneur Steve Blank. The method which emerged in order to achieve success was pairing the framework with the addition of key processes, tools and techniques. The goal of the Lean framework is to launch, test and revise a business model until it is deemed either feasible or no longer worth pursuing. In order to achieve the goal from within the classroom, students were provided tools to guide them through the process of creating a business actually capable of selling products and/or services. The result of building a fully functional online business is that students are able to achieve the launching, testing and refining of a business model in the market. The results suggest that this highly engaging experiential exercise can be considered for adoption in a wide range of entrepreneurship courses. The results further suggest that experimentation on integrating the traditional teaching approaches with this new lean approach holds great promise.