100 Exciting and Innovative Lectures for Every Kind of Entrepreneur

Successful entrepreneurs are a special breed of people with endless drive, passion, optimism, and determination. The following lectures address these folks with ideas on what entrepreneurship is, experience versus education, career advice, tips and skills, examples from personal entrepreneurial journeys, and advice for getting started. Browse through these video lectures, some only a few minutes long and others lasting an hour, to find information from professionals who share their experience and expertise.

Defining Entrepreneurship

Learn how these entrepreneurs define entrepreneurship with these videos.

  1. What is Entrepreneurship?. Jeff Hawkins discusses what an entrepreneur is and how to use being an entrepreneur as a tool for success instead of as a defining characteristic.
  2. Entrepreneur-in-Residence. Danny Shader describes the difference between those who are “product picker” entrepreneurs and those who are not.
  3. Who are Entrepreneurs?. Tim Draper describes his view of what entrepreneurs are.
  4. Mercenaries and Missionaries. Take a look at this definition of what entrepreneurs are and what they are not.
  5. What Kind of Person Are You?. Are you a private or public person? Examine your personality as it relates to what it means to be an entrepreneur.
  6. The Reality of Entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship should be done out of love and passion, not a drive for money.
  7. What is an Entrepreneur?. Gordon Ringold shares his simple idea behind what an entrepreneur is.
  8. Qualities of an Entrepreneur. Elon Musk offers his description of an entrepreneur.

Experience and Education

The great debate over whether education or experience matters most for entrepreneurial success continues with these lectures.

  1. Experience is Overrated. Guy Kawasaki shares his unpopular view that the best entrepreneurs are young and inexperienced.
  2. Real World Learning. Trip Hawkins discusses his first venture as a teenager and describes how success comes from failure and real-world learning.
  3. To Get an MBA or Not?. Consider this position of not getting an MBA, but learning to manage through hands-on experience instead.
  4. Can Entrepreneurship Be Taught?. Fern Mandelbaum gives her answer about what can and cannot be taught.
  5. Successful Entrepreneurs. Understand why compelling ideas are more important than the desire to be an entrepreneur and how education plays a role in this idea.
  6. Balancing Science and Business. Learn what Marc Fleury says about embracing more than one type of education to improve your success.
  7. The Global Future. Learn what John Doerr says are the important areas to study to ensure success in the global environment.
  8. Finding Your Strengths. Vic Verma discusses getting a technical education as well as what type of education may best serve you as an entrepreneur.
  9. To MBA or Not: Technical Degree or MBA?. Find out what Gajus Worthington says about this question based on his experience.
  10. The Value of Business School. Find out this entrepreneur’s opinion about the best part of business school and why it is important.
  11. Education: Importance of Peers. Understand why making friends and maintaining relationships during school is important for entrepreneurs.
  12. To Get an MBA, or Not?. Vinod Kholsa explains why an MBA is not the only way to get the necessary experience to be a successful entrepreneur.
  13. Importance of Experience. Find out what Jeff Hawkins says about why having experience is important.
  14. Starting a business during undergraduate study. Joe Liemandt explains why this time of life is an excellent time to start a business.

Career Advice

Many successful entrepreneurs started first in a more traditional career. Find out what career advice some of those entrepreneurs have to share.

  1. Career Advice: Five Takeaways. From taking risks to integrity, find out what John Roos says are the most important points for a successful career.
  2. Career Advice. Debra Dunn and Randy Komisar offer their advice for graduating students that includes following your passion, continuing to learn, and learning to overcome fear.
  3. Career Advice. Michael Goldberg describes how successful entrepreneurs follow their passion and never stop going forward and what areas he believes will be successful in the near future.
  4. Career Advice. Brook Byers advises entrepreneurs to work with a company that will provide them with the experience necessary for their solo success.
  5. Career Advice. John Doerr offers several specific pieces of information that he feels are invaluable to creating a successful career.
  6. Pyramids, Not Ladders. Learn how making a lateral career move can be as valuable as making an upward one as you gain more experience and knowledge before moving up.
  7. Creativity vs. Control. Learn what experts say about mapping out career decisions versus taking opportunities that come up along your career path.
  8. Growing with Hewlett Packard. Debra Dunn explains why she decided to get her MBA and work with HP as a stepping stone to her success.
  9. Lessons for Failure. Karen Richardson relates how her failures throughout her career have shaped her success.
  10. The Career Path to Becoming a Venture Capitalist or an Entrepreneur. Learn why you should start your career at a company in sales and why you should never go into investment banking at the beginning of your career.
  11. Career: Learning from Failure Early On. Failure and persistence are often important to success and are the keys to how this man succeeded.

Advice for Success

Take this advice from successful entrepreneurs who have gone before you.

  1. Stay Interested. Learn how you become an interesting person by being interested in what is going on around the world.
  2. Advice to Aspiring Entrepreneurs. Evan Williams suggests to start small and go bigger and explains why he believes this is the best way for entrepreneurs to get started.
  3. Following Your Gut. Geoff Davis instructs students to go for big dreams despite any lack of money.
  4. Persistence and the Notion of the Big Idea. Trip Hawkins advocates sticking to your beliefs and stepping away from what everyone else is doing to find your success.
  5. Adding Value to Companies. Bill Campbell describes how adding value to companies at every stage of their development is important.
  6. Following Your Goal. Passion, good judgment, and having fun are among the key elements discussed here to achieving your goal.
  7. Work/Life Balance. Roger McNamee discusses why entrepreneurs cannot ignore family along the way.
  8. Passion and the Customer. Vic Verma uses real-life examples of why it’s important to consider the customer when building your business.
  9. Overcoming the Fear. Randy Adams discusses preparing for the worst in order to deal with whatever may happen along the path to becoming an entrepreneur.
  10. Confessions of a Serial Entrepreneur. Mitch Thrower discusses entrepreneurship and details what you can develop to make the most of your success.
  11. 10 Business Secrets. Mitch Thrower lectures at University of San Diego and shares his ten business secrets important for making it big.
  12. The Value of Broad-Based Leadership and Experience. Understand the importance of bringing together a leadership team with a broad set of experience and all of whom have a passion for what they are doing.
  13. Advice for Aspiring Entrepreneurs. Networking and learning from those within your network are the focus of this advice.
  14. Importance of Family In Building a Start-up. Find out what Frank Levinson says about keeping family among the top areas of focus when you begin your business.
  15. Tips for the Entrepreneur. Larry Page offers five tips including don’t settle, have experience, and it’s okay to solve hard problems.

Skills for Entrepreneurs

These videos offer many important skills for entrepreneurs.

  1. Skills of an Entrepreneur. Leadership and a dynamic management style are the keys to being a successful entrepreneur, according to Chong-Moon Lee.
  2. How Do You Find Your Passion and How do You Pursue It?. Entrepreneurs looking for direction should watch this lecture to learn how to focus their energies.
  3. Perseverance: Sticking to Your Beliefs. Entrepreneurship can be a struggle, but Guy Kawasaki explains how perseverance and passion will give you what you need to succeed.
  4. Challenges for an Entrepreneur. Learn the value of understanding yourself and recognizing faults as a key to success as an entrepreneur.
  5. Self-Awareness. Entrepreneurs must be able to look honestly at their strengths and weaknesses in order to succeed.
  6. Passion for Work. Learn how a passion for what you do translates to entrepreneurial success.
  7. Persistence Pays Off. Repeat long enough and you will be in the right place at the right time because of your Persistence
  8. Learning to Take Risks: A Personal Story. Larry Page relates his personal experience of learning to take risks in order to achieve success.
  9. How Do You Teach High-Tech Entrepreneurship?. Learn what education and abilities are best developed and how to develop them for entrepreneurial success.
  10. Choosing the Path that is Right for You. Jeff Raikes describes attributes that are important for career success–among them, passion and the ability to get things done.
  11. Creativity. Learn how you can find your creativity as an entrepreneur with this seminar lecture.
  12. What Special Factor Makes an Entrepreneur Successful?. Learn what qualities Fern Mandelbaum feels are important for entrepreneurs.
  13. 5 Critical Skills Entrepreneurs Need. Jerry Kaplan details the five skills he feels are important, including leadership, communication, and being a team player.
  14. Skills for Social Entrepreneurship. Learn what Debra Dunn says about collaboration between non-profit and for-profit to help address social issues and the skills each brings to this joint venture.

Learn How Others Succeeded

These lectures offer the real-life stories of successful entrepreneurs.

  1. The Founding of AgraQuest. Pam Marrone discusses how she turned her lifelong love of bugs and her upbringing in a green environment into her successful business.
  2. Strengths of Silicon Valley. Find out what John Roos says about how Silicon Valley was built upon diversity and being allowed to fail.
  3. Silicon Valley: Changing with the times. Roos discusses how Silicon Valley’s ability to keep up with the changing times has promoted its ongoing success.
  4. Silicon Valley: An Ecosystem. Successful entrepreneurs should tap into the ecosystem of knowing all the people involved and learning and growing from each other that has been a key element to the Silicon Valley’s success.
  5. Coming to Silicon Valley. Lee relates how he went from his family business in Korea to Silicon Valley and his eventual success in business.
  6. Savi Technology Creates the Internet of Things. Vic Verma details how he went from being a graduate student at Stanford to President and CEO of Savi Technology.
  7. The Early Career of a Serial Entrepreneur. Randy Adams discusses the beginnings of his career as an entrepreneur.
  8. The Career Path of a palmOne Executive. Ken Wirt details his career history that lead to his leadership at palmOne.
  9. Video of Cory Doctorow’s talk. This Cambridge Business Lecture video features this accomplished journalist who speaks on Digital Rights Management, copyright, piracy, and his experience in business.
  10. Matching Interest with Business Opportunities. Learn from this real-life example how matching opportunity with interest and ability is an important aspect to consider.
  11. From Start Up Coach to Venture Capitalist. The experience here is an important reminder to young entrepreneurs to always keep options open and stay in tune with what is going on around them.

Female Entrepreneurship

Find out how female entrepreneurs have succeeded in a typically male-dominated environment with these lectures.

  1. A Member of the CEO Minority. Understand what it’s like to be a woman CEO in a male-driven environment.
  2. A Girl Among Geeks. Karen Richards describes growing up among men and engineers and how that affected her role as a female entrepreneur.
  3. Women and Entrepreneurship Introduction. Linda Hill, a professor at Harvard Business School, discusses HBS’s the real-life business models it uses as case studies.
  4. Joline Godfrey: Social Worker to Entrepreneur. Learn how this woman went from non-profit to for-profit while keeping the business of educating young women at the forefront.
  5. Taran Swan: Business Development at Nickelodeon. Follow the success of this woman’s journey.
  6. Donna Lopiano: Women’s Sports Foundation. Ms. Lopiano describes the entrepreneurial journey of Billie Jean King as she founded several ventures important for women in sports.
  7. Enterprising Women Exhibition . Meet four successful business women and learn how they made it big in the world of business.
  8. Women and Economic Development. Study women entrepreneurs across time and in various countries with this video lecture series. There is also a close examination of the women in India who developed the Self-Employed Women’s Association.
  9. Founding of Teach for America: Entrepreneurs Envision What Others Say is Impossible. Kim Smith describes how she and her partner overcame adversity to create a successful non-profit.
  10. Examples of Social Entrepreneurs. Kavita Ramdas describes examples of successful female social entrepreneurs.

Getting Started

The following lectures offer helpful advice on getting started.

  1. The Role of Networking to Find the Best Resources. Learn how Komisar relies on his network for resources, and then how he gets to know the people to determine if he wants to commit.
  2. Starting out as a Sole Founder. Michael Goldberg discusses the disadvantages of starting out on your own as well as what it takes to make a shift from venture capitalist to entrepreneur.
  3. Establishing Credibility. Learn how establishing credibility can be difficult, especially as a non-profit working with foreign governments.
  4. Establishing Culture and Values Early On. Find out why, as an entrepreneur, it is important to establish the culture and values early.
  5. The Role of a Consultant vs. the Role of a Virtual CEO. Discover what Randy Komisar says about the differences and why these roles, and the differentiations, are important.
  6. Personal Connectivity Cycle. Judy Estrin discusses the importance of connectivity on an individual level and what it means to entrepreneurs.
  7. Data Sources. This lecture at Georgia State University describes where entrepreneurs can find important data when gathering information for their businesses.
  8. Testing New Ideas. Entrepreneurs can find ways to test their ideas prior to going out with them, and this lecture discusses how.
  9. Business Structures. Learn about the different types of corporate structures in America.
  10. Start Up Steps. Find out what important steps you can take to get your start-up business going.

Funding and Marketing

These lectures discuss funding and marketing your ventures.

  1. Investment Timing: Early, Late or In-between. Janice Roberts discusses investment timing for entrepreneurs from a venture capitalist’s perspective.
  2. Selling the Dream. Find out how Guy Kawasaki approaches marketing your idea by evangelizing what you have.
  3. Bootstrapping. Learn how to creatively raise money to get your business going.
  4. Angels, Banks, & VCs. Explore these three ways to raise money for your entrepreneurial venture.
  5. Finding Partners & Market Entry. Explore funny market blunders as an introduction to entering the marketplace and also discover how best to find a partner for your business.
  6. International Supply Chains. Learn how to get your product from you to the customer on a large scale basis.
  7. E-Marketing. Internet marketing and the entrepreneur are closely linked, so learn how best to take advantage of this opportunity.
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