People Strategy in Startups
3rd semester master's elective
Guests in previous years: Lasse Chor (Startup Aarhus), Natasha Overmeyer (Stanford), Marc Olsen (Voluntas), Danny Kim (Wharton), Christian Erfurt (Be My Eyes)
Careers unfold differently depending on the type of firm one works at, be it a small startup, a scaling startup or an established company. People Strategy in Startups (PSS) decenters the entrepreneur and focuses on the joiners, investors, and/or board members of the startup ecosystem. Participants will read the most recent academic articles in the emerging field of people strategy at the intersection of strategy, entrepreneurship and human resources. The course introduces the key metrics based on which startups differ from traditional workplaces, how traditional HR topics take on different meanings in fast-growing environments, and what managers and employees can do to avoid the pitfalls that could jeopardize the wellbeing of the employees and organizational performance. Participating in this course will give students a competitive advantage to navigate their careers.
PSS will require students to go boots on the ground and develop relationships with participants of the Nordic startup ecosystem and solve a people strategy issue for a scaling case company. We will also welcome guests from the industry who will introduce the practical problems industry participants face. The course’s prepares future managers and employees to think strategically and analytically about people strategy issues in scaling startups and the long-term effect on their careers.
A sample of the analytical research questions we will analyse during this course:
Under which conditions do scaling startups fast-track careers?
Are startup employees more likely to become entrepreneurs?
What are the short- and long-term earnings consequences of working for a startup?
Do scaling fast makes startups more or less likely to die?
How do investors and board members influence startup hiring?
What is it that the job you apply for rarely ends up to tbe the job you get in startups?
When is the best time to formalise the human resources department function?
How does one build a data-native organisation from day 1 and anticipate the data challenges of growing?
How do management and front-line employees co-create culture and work experience to improve work-life balance?
Key takeaways for the public
A Race against Time: Managing People in Fast-growing Startups
I gave a talk to the general audience about her class, People Strategy in Startups, at the Festival of Research on April 28, 2022.
Tweetable take-away: Startups are not just scaled-down versions of large companies! @idnut ’s research explains that to overcome the inevitable challenges that result from racing against time, fast-growing companies need to know how people strategy plays out differently in such environments.
Applied Quantitative Methods for Management Research
What does it mean when seminar participants or journal referees claim that your manuscript has an endogeneity problem or no identification strategy? How can you create a research design that allows us to make causal claims in a paper? With a point of departure in counterfactual thinking, this Ph.D. course introduces a toolbox of analytical techniques to better ground causal claims in academic texts.
The covered methods are the state-of-the-art quantitative tools in management research. We focus on visualizing the assumptions underlying specific research designs using directed acyclic graphs, and introduce several statistical techniques based broadly on two perspectives that address the limits and opportunities of making causal claims based on observational data, i.e. structural equation modeling and quasi-experimental design. We learn the methods by reading about the underlying intuition behind them, by seeing them work in academic texts, and by replicating them using software packages.
The ultimate goal of this class is to spark an interest in quantitative analysis and de-mystify the concepts and skills involved. In doing so, it will facilitate that Ph.D. students become engaged and collaborative contributors to the academic community.
Entrepreneurial Strategy in the U.S. Beer Industry
Entrepreneurship and Business Planning
Bachelor level course
This module introduces the entrepreneurial strategy compass (Gans, Scott and Wu 2019) as an analytical toolbox to analyze four go-to-market strategies. Students will learn about four contemporary U.S. craft beer businesses as exemplars.