Entrepreneurial Skills: Evaluating New Business Ideas

April 10–11, 2019 $2,850
October 16–17, 2019 $2,850

In our fast-moving innovation economy, leaders need to find new ways to tackle business problems, think beyond the status quo, and create value for the organization.

In this immersive, two-day business entrepreneurship program, you will tap your innovative potential to evaluate the potency of new business ideas, ranging from a process change that will create efficiencies, to a new product, to a transformative business model. Through dynamic discussion and engaging exercises, you’ll learn entrepreneurial methods and processes to help you assess ideas, as well as gain a deeper understanding of value creation.

Upon completion, you’ll be able to exercise entrepreneurial thinking, and will be equipped with frameworks and skills to apply to your organization’s challenges. It is not necessary to have a business idea or plan before enrolling in this program.

Program Benefits

  • Gain entrepreneurial methods and processes to guide you through the evaluation and assessment of your ideas 
  • Learn to design value propositions and business models that support your organization’s desired growth 
  • Practice testing hypotheses about your business ideas to reduce the risk of failure 
  • Learn how to provide evidence that your new business ideas are viable and to gain buy-in from senior management 
  • Discover tools and principles to help actively manage the process of identifying and creating valuable business opportunities that build your company or organization’s competitive advantage
  • Earn a Certificate of Participation from the Harvard University Division of Continuing Education

Topics Covered

  • Understanding the role of entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship in various business contexts
  • Examining your entrepreneurial mindset and skills
  • Implementing tools to assess and refine your business ideas
  • Learning how to create customer profiles, map value, and verify a problem-solution fit
  • Create your value propositions and present this value to stakeholders in order to secure resources and win support
  • Applying effective communication skills to pitch your business idea confidently

Who Should Enroll

This program is appropriate for business managers in a range of industries who are looking to better understand how to create value for their company, organization, or unit. Examples of value creation include:

  • Developing a new business line, product, or service within an established organization 
  • Expanding into new markets with established products or services
  • Finding opportunities to increase the capacity of the company
  • Identifying a new process or workflow that would increase productivity within a current firm  
  • Developing new and effective business models
  • Determining innovative methods to strengthen the company’s competitive advantage

Program Information

Program Dates

April 10–11, 2019
October 16–17, 2019
Instructor Areen Shahbari

Class Times

Programs run from 9 am to 5 pm.

Program Fee

2019 Program Fee: $2,850


One Brattle Square
Harvard University
Cambridge, Mass.


Areen Shahbari is a social entrepreneur, a business consultant, and a lecturer on entrepreneurship, strategic management, marketing, and effective communication at Harvard University Extension School and Simmons School of Business. She provides consulting services to local and international entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial companies, leads travel courses that focus on women leadership and entrepreneurship, serves on business and entrepreneurship panels, and leads workshops and training on networking, negotiation, entrepreneurship, communicating across cultures, and persuasion. Shahbari has taught in the United States, Chile, Jordan, Palestine, Morocco, Turkey, and Mexico. She is also the Chief Executive Officer of Cactus Int., a company that she founded in 2013 to promote women entrepreneurship in the Middle East and North Africa Region.