Crain’s New York Business, Education Report: “Startup Factories”

New York’s colleges are stepping up support of budding entrepreneurs with courses, mentoring, networking, awards. High marks were given to Pace’s Lubin School of Business, where a 2011 pitch contest drew an audience of 400 — including venture capitalists, angel investors and bankers.

A special Education Report in the April 23 issue of Crain’s New York Business focuses on how New York’s colleges and universities have ratcheted up their commitment to supporting budding entrepreneurs in recent years.  With courses, mentoring, networking and cash awards, they are growing crops of would-be entrepreneurs that they say are far better prepared than their predecessors. 

Lubin Professor Bruce Bachenheimer,  Director of Pace’s new Entrepreneurship Lab, was interviewed by Steve Garmhausen for the article and his comments are highlighted below.  Read the Education Report in its entirety by clicking here:

  • One of the latest manifestations of the trend: the February launch, by Pace University’s Lubin School of Business, of an entrepreneurship lab that aims to facilitate collaborations between students in schools as diverse as nursing and business.  “The idea is that it will involve all Pace students and faculty from all the schools,” said Bruce Bachenheimer, director of the lab and of Lubin’s entrepreneurship program. “We’re stressing an interdisciplinary, hands-on experience to find new ways to solve difficult problems.”
  • Entrepreneurship programs are trying to teach just about everything else. The most straightforward subjects include writing a business plan and doing financial, competitive and market analysis.  “When it comes to the harder stuff, such as the ability to recognize opportunities, Pace and other schools use case studies, brainstorming lessons and other exercises to nurture that skill. “It’s kind of like teaching music or painting,” explained Mr. Bachenheimer.
  • Pitch programs—in which teams of students, alumni and others vie for cash prizes by developing and pitching business ideas—are a centerpiece of the entrepreneurship push among the city’s schools.  Pitch contests have also proved to be a great way to network and meet investors. The most recent contest at Pace drew an audience of 400, including venture capitalists, angel investors and bankers, said Mr. Bachenheimer.
  • Schools are grappling with the question of how to gauge the success of their entrepreneurship programs.  And by one definition, entrepreneurship training doesn’t have to result in a business launch to be successful. If a person is trained to size up opportunities and take initiatives, he and his employer have an edge, said Mr. Bachenheimer. “The nature of work is changing dramatically,” he said. “There’s no more ‘Give me a job and tell me what to do.’ ”

 

 

 

 

Crain’s New York Business: Executive Moves, April 2, 2012

Lubin Professor Bruce Bachenheimer’s appointment as Director of Pace’s new entrepreneurship lab continues to make news.

Crain’s New York Business included Professor Bachenheimer’s appointment in this week’s Executive Moves column, along with his photo: 

Pace University:
Bruce Bachenheimer, 50, was promoted to director of the university’s entrepreneurship lab. He will continue as clinical professor of management. He was previously program director of entrepreneurship at the Lubin School of Business.

Military Advanced Education: “Pace to Encourage Entrepreneurship”

Military Advanced Education, the Journal of Higher Learning for Today’s Servicemember, reports on the opening of Pace’s new Entrepreneurship Lab in the April issue.

Military Advanced Education saluted Pace’s launch of an Entrepreneurship (E-Lab) which is expected to both nuture the entrepreneurial spirit on campus and serve as a beacon for innovation in the Lower Manhattan community. In addition to the site in Manhattan, the publication noted that Pace opened an Entrepreneurship Lab at the Goldstein Academic Building on its Pleasantville, NY, campus.

Military Advanced Education quoted Neil S. Braun, dean of the Lubin School of Business, on the meaning of entrepreneurship:

“Entrepreneurship, in its broadest sense, is a personal approach for developing ideas into plans and plans into reality. It is interdisciplinary ‘doing.’  Entrepreneurial leadership is as important in large companies as it is in startups; it’s a mindset toward relentless problem solving that leads to successful execution” said Braun, who in his career has assumed many different type of roles, including internet entrepreneur, television network president, corporate attorney, CEO and film producer. “It is therefore at the heart of business education; it is the ultimate capstone for applying the knowledge and skills of the discrete disciplines to a product or service for a specific market opportunity.”

Professor Bruce Bachenheimer, the E-Labs leader, discussed the importance of an entrepreneurial mindset:

“The Entrepreneurship Lab aims to foster an entrepreneurial mindset – a way of thinking and acting that focuses on developing new ways to solve problems and create value,” said Bachenheimer, who drafted the initial proposal of the E- Lab. “These skills are important not only for those seeking to establish a new venture, but are increasingly critical in a wide variety of professional careers given today’s hyper-competitive marketplace, where rapid technological innovation and globalization has led to corporate downsizing and a dramatic change in the very nature of work.”

NYConvergence: “FinTech Innovation Lab Makes Wall Street Sexy Again”

In a double play … Professor Bruce Bachenheimer’s recent quote in MIT’s “Technology Review” concerning Wall Street losing some of its allure due to the financial crisis was picked up by NYConvergence.com, which reports on digital media technology in the Tri-State region.

Since Wall Street’s profits and prestige have slumped, the best and the brightest are looking elsewhere for jobs, making it harder to lure promising recruits. Bruce Bachenheimer, director of entrepreneurship at Pace University, told Technology Review that in the 1990s it was ”exciting and sexy to say you were working on Wall Street.”  But that’s changed. Those formerly positive perceptions have flipped 180 degrees.

Meanwhile, the prospect for tech entrepreneurs joining startups with the potential of a lucrative IPO is looking brighter all the time, reported NYConvergence in an article about the FinTech program.  Launched in December 2010, the lab is an incubator of NYC-based financial technology startups.

Technology Review: “Wall Street’s Search for Innovation”

Lubin Professor Bruce Bachenheimer, Director of Pace’s Entrepreneurship Lab, discusses the technology brain drain from Wall Street, how it’s become possible to be a force in financial services development without being in Manhattan, and what Wall Street is trying to do about it.

New York is investing in financial startups to make sure technologists and new ideas stick around.

After banking deregulation took off in the 1990s, it became “exciting and sexy to say you were working on Wall Street,” says Bruce Bachenheimer, clinical professor of management and director of entrepreneurship at Pace University. Money and prestige helped lure top academic talent, including mathematicians and computer scientists, to hedge funds.

But that has changed, beginning with 2008 and the financial meltdown. 

“The perception of working on Wall Street went from positive to negative,” Bachenheimer told Erik Sherman, author of  the article, “Wall Street’s Search for Innovation,” published in MIT’s Technology Review on March 16. Wall Street reached its latest low this week when a Goldman Sachs executive resigned and publicly excoriated the company’s ethics in a New York Times op-ed.

Meanwhile, places like Silicon Valley, Boston, and other hotbeds of high tech suddenly look like the most attractive places to be. With the recent spate of Web-company IPOs, technology startups are also potentially a faster ticket to wealth than Wall Street, where bonuses fell 14 percent last year, continuing a multi-year slide.

“Perceptions of desirability are very important in entrepreneurship. [Technologists] want to go where the action is and want to be doing cool stuff,” says Bachenheimer.

MO.com: “Live Deliberately”

MO.com – a website for entrepreneurs that stands for Modus Operandi or Method of Operating – interviewed Professor Bruce Bachenheimer about his passion for entrepreneurship, early influences, how he fosters creativity and innovation in his students, mentors, social entrepreneurship, job challenges and his most important piece of advice for those ready to embark on the adventure of starting a business.

MO.com interviews entrepreneurs from all walks, across all industries, and from around the world.  The online publication recently spoke with Pace’s Bruce Bachenheimer and asked him to share his strategies and business philosophies with its readers.  The article is embedded below or read it online where you can vote for Professor Bachenheimer as giving the month’s best interview by clicking here

“Live Deliberately”

Written by MO

Bruce Bachenheimer, Pace University

Director of the Entrepreneurship Lab

http://webpage.pace.edu/bbachenheimer/

Bruce Bachenheimer is a Clinical Professor of Management, the Director of the Entrepreneurship Lab and a Faculty Fellow of the Wilson Center for Social Entrepreneurship at Pace University. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses, primarily in the areas of entrepreneurship, management, and strategy.

Bruce has been widely quoted in a variety of publications, interviewed on radio and television, and has spoken on entrepreneurship at numerous conferences, including the Annual Youth Assembly at the United Nations, the Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers, and the Make Mine a Million $ Business program, where he also served as a judge. Mr. Bachenheimer is a reviewer for the CASE Journal, the founding faculty advisor of the Pace Association for Collegiate Entrepreneurs, a Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) Sam Walton Fellow, and the organizer of the Pace Business Plan Competition and the Pace Pitch Contest.

Bruce is a member of the Board of Directors and past Chairman of the MIT Enterprise Forum of New York City and has served on the organization’s Global Board. He also serves on the Board of Directors & Advisors of LeadAmerica and has served as a consultant to the NYC Department of Small Business Services and the New York City Economic Development Corp. He founded Annapolis Maritime Corp. and co-founded StockCentral Australia.

Bachenheimer began his career as a Wall Street trader then had the courage to take a step back from the rat race and go sailing … for several years. After sailing through the Caribbean to South America, he headed to Annapolis, Maryland, where he launched a business importing teak lumber and taught himself yacht joinery. Bachenheimer then transitioned to a career in high-tech forensic science, where he served as the International Product Manager for an entrepreneurial venture, conducting business in over 20 countries. Several years later, he received the prestigious McKinsey & Company Leadership Scholarship to pursue and MBA degree, which he earned from the Australian Graduate School of Management. While completing his degree, he co-founded StockCentral Australia, which grew to become one of the largest financial websites in the country. A Pace alumni, Bachenheimer earned a BBA, Summa Cum Laude, from the Lubin School of Business. He was conversational in Japanese and spent a semester at Tsukuba National University in Japan as an undergraduate.

MO: Where does your passion for entrepreneurship come from? Who or what were your early influences or inspirations?

Bruce: I grew up in a somewhat rural area and there were hardly any local businesses where neighborhood kids could find part-time or summer work. Out of necessity, I created my opportunities; building things such as rabbit hutches and photographing neighborhood homes, which I printed, mounted and sold myself. I also did a fair bit of hiking and camping, which instilled a sense of independence and self-reliance. Another early influence was Henry David Thoreau’s Walden, particularly the line “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” I later bought a boat and sailed from New England to South America and back to Annapolis, Maryland – I named it Deliberate, which is how I try to live.

MO: How do you foster creativity and innovation in your students? Is creativity something that we’re born with or can it be taught and developed?

Bruce: Some people are certainly born with more creativity than others, but I believe creativity and innovation can be taught and developed. I use a variety of methods to encourage students to think and act more innovatively. Conducting engaging classroom exercises, selecting non-traditional texts, using interesting case studies, bringing in dynamic guest speakers, showing inspirational video clips, incorporating business simulations in the curriculum, assigning challenging projects, and taking students on filed trips or extracurricular activities are some examples. I try to remember something Confucius said: “I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.”

MO: Have you had any mentors during the course of your career?

Bruce: Sure, there were many and I’m grateful to each of them. Instead of a seeking an individual mentor for general career or life advice, I have turned to a variety of mentors for help in specific areas: interviewing, negotiating, presenting, managing, serving on a board, and teaching.

MO: Why do you think that the field social entrepreneurship has recently exploded? Why are people looking for more meaningful ways to carve out a career and how will this trend impact the start-up landscape?

Bruce: There are so many reasons. But in a way, I believe it is just a natural progression for people in an advanced society – a sort of move up Maslow’s hierarchy towards self-actualization. Generally, I think we are increasingly aware of important social issues and have more resources available to address them. Entrepreneurship is really about finding new ways to solve problems and add value, commercially and/or socially. More locally, it appears that the 9/11 terrorist attacks have had a profound and lasting impact on people’s desire to find meaningful careers. I’d recommend David Bornstein’s book ‘How to Change the World’ to better answer the question.

MO: You’re in constant contact with bright, young innovators. What aspects of teaching and mentoring are most inspiring for you? On the flip side, are there any aspects of your job that you find specifically challenging?

Bruce: I really do enjoy working with bright, young, motivated entrepreneurs and innovators. I am inspired by them and honestly believe that nobody learns more that the person standing at the front of the classroom. I don’t only work with my own students, but many throughout Pace and from numerous other universities. I organize the Pace Pitch Contest, which attracts competitors from schools such as NYU, Columbia, Princeton, Harvard, MIT, and Stanford. It’s been great to help teams prepare for the competition and then see them ace their pitch. I’ve kept in contact with many of them and am proud of what they are accomplishing. I have also enjoyed working with young entrepreneurs as a member of the board of the MIT Enterprise Forum of New York City over the past decade and as a mentor at the Kairos Society Global Summit this past year. I guess the biggest challenge is being as critical as I believe is necessary, while not dampening passion or discouraging persistence. But that’s passion and persistence, as opposed to arrogance and stubbornness.

MO: What is the most important piece of advice you have for those looking to start a business?

Bruce: Start by looking for something you’re truly passionate about. If you haven’t found that, don’t start a business – keep looking. There are so many challenges in launching a new venture – requiring so much time, energy, resources, social capital, and emotional commitment – it better be something you really love. Another thing is to find great people – great mentors, great partners, great advisors, and great employees.

 

Westchester County Business Journal: “Bachenheimer now runs E-Lab”

Pace University’s new Entrepreneurship Lab, known as the E-Lab, is available to all Pace students, in New York City and in Pleasantville.

Pace University’s new Entrepreneurship Lab, known as the E-Lab, now has a CEO –  it’s professor Bruce Bachenheimer of Chappaqua. A clinical professor of management at Pace, Bachenheimer is now also the director of the E-Lab. It is available to all Pace students, in New York City and in Pleasantville.

Bachenheimer will advise all aspiring student entrepreneurs, in everything from accounting and computer science to law and the performing arts, noted the Westchester County Business Journal.

He came up with the idea for the annual Pace Pitch Contest and Business Plan Competition, which he introduced in 2004, just after joining the Lubin School of Business faculty.

“The Entrepreneurship Lab aims to foster an entrepreneurial mindset – a way of thinking and acting that focuses on developing new ways to solve problems and create value,” said Bachenheimer. “These skills are important not only for those seeking to establish a new venture, but are increasingly critical in a wide variety of professional careers given today’s hyper-competitive marketplace, where rapid technological innovation and globalization has led to corporate downsizing and a dramatic change in the very nature of work.”

Bachenheimer began his career as a Wall Street trader, and then took several years off to sail through the Caribbean to South America. After that, he launched an importing business and then moved into high-tech forensic science before joining Pace.

In The Empire: “Pace University’s Entrepreneurship Lab Will Train People To Think Differently”

A startup blog covers the opening of Pace’s new startup Entrepreuneurship Lab. How appropriate.

This is the seed blog for InTheEmpire, a Streetwise Media site specifically for NYC, set to officially launch this March.
 
February 17, 2012
 
 

Pace University officially opened the doors to its Entrepreneurship Lab (aka, E-Lab) last night, and there to cut the ribbon was Professor Bruce Bachenheimer, who was named the lab’s first director.

“It takes innovation and entrepreneurship to develop things that are meaningful,” Bachenheimer tells us over the phone.

The big picture strategy of the E-Lab is not necessarily to incubate companies or create startups, but it’s to spur entrepreneurial and innovative thoughts and actions.

“We don’t measure our metrics by how many students launch businesses,” Bachenheimer says. “It’s the ability to come up with new and creative solutions to problems, and the ability to add value in a unique and innovative way.”

To spur innovation, Bachenheimer and his E-Lab will provide students with workspace for creative thinking, in addition to access to workshops, guest speakers, roundtable discussions, and networking events involving members of the entrepreneurial community.

“If you’re looking at very good innovators, they have to be young enough so that their minds are not so rigid in the way things are and the way things should be,” says Bachenheimer. “But they also need to have enough knowledge, skills, and abilities to find and solve problems.”

To mold a mind into innovative shape, college students need an “experiential education.” People at that young of an age need to be able to expand their horizons and question the norm, or, to borrow a line from Steve Jobs, you need to “stay hungry, stay foolish” to truly innovate.

“You need to train people to think differently, and if there are specific skills they don’t have, let them know how to get those resources,” Bachenheimer says. “Hopefully, the Entrepreneurship Lab is one of them.”

(Image, from left: Neil Braun, Bruce Bachenheimer, Harold Levy)

Crain’s New York Business: “Pace University launches entrepreneur lab”

Following the lead of schools like New York University and Columbia University, a group at Pace University has created a space for the school’s budding entrepreneurs to call home.

Downtown business school creates a space to foster entrepreneurialism among its students

By Emily Laermer
February 15, 2012
 
Following the lead of schools like New York University and Columbia University, a group at Pace University has created a space for the school’s budding entrepreneurs to call home. 
 
The lab, located on the third floor of 163 William St., will open Thursday. It was the brainchild of Neil Braun, the dean of the university’s Lubin School of Business. However, it will be available for use by all Pace students, not just those from the business school, he said. 
 
“It’s about more than starting companies. Entrepreneurship, to me, is a mindset, a way of thinking and interdisciplinary doing,” said Mr. Braun, adding that the lab will be open to students in all of Pace’s specialized schools, which include programs for computer sciences, business, education and health professions, as well as an arts and science program.
 
Before becoming dean of Lubin 18 months ago, Mr. Braun was the president of NBC Television Network and CEO and chairman of Viacom Entertainment.
 
Mr. Braun would not disclose the financials of the lab, but he noted that funding will come from the university. He said the university “reallocated funds that were used for other things that outlived their utility,” adding that he expects future successes from the lab will justify the cost.
 
The lab will include space for students to conference with investors, a studio for them to work and a large meeting room for speakers. Bruce Bachenheimer, the director of the lab and a professor at Lubin, says he plans to reach out to some of the thousand-plus Pace-area alums who self identify as entrepreneurs to be potential guests.
 
“This will be very student focused,” Mr. Bachenheimer said. “It’s important for me to see how the students are using the lab and what is providing them with the most value.”
 
In fact, Mr. Bachenheimer says he has seen an increase in student interest in entrepreneurship in recent years. He blames this on the economy and the high unemployment rate. Students see creating their own companies as a safer route.
 
“They also want to make something meaningful and create something,” he said.
 
Part of the inspiration for this lab stemmed from competitions at other schools like Stanford University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Locally, New York University launched its Innovation Venture Fund in 2010. This group offers seed money for startups built at the university. In November, the organization helped organize an Entrepreneurs Festival for its students.
 
NYU also partnered with Columbia University to organize hackNY, an group that aims to connect tech-minded students with startups. Columbia has its own lab, Columbia Technology Ventures, which launches about a dozen startups per year.
 
Pace will be hosting a ribbon-cutting event Thursday evening at the lab to mark its official launch. In addition to members of the Pace community, speakers for the reception include Gurbaksh Chahal, the founder, chairman and CEO of online advertising network RadiumOne, and Robert Walsh, the commissioner at the city’s Department of Small Business Services.

New York Daily News: “Your Money: Bouncing back. Laid-off NYers get fresh start wth home businesses”

While hiring seems to be picking up again, the financial meltdown that began in 2008 resulted in a surge of home-based businesses as millions of laid-off workers scrambled to find a way to pay their bills.

In 2009, 18.4 million Americans worked at home, an increase from 16.5 million the previous year.  A little over half of all small U.S. businesses are based out of people’s homes, according to the latest Census Bureau data available.

But before would be self-employed moguls get started, they need to look realistically at what they’re hoping to accomplish, Bruce Bachenheimer, a professor of management and Director of Entrepreneurship at Pace University (pictured), advised Fran Golden of the New York Daily News

“Do you have a real strategy?  A lot of people in this bad economy see home-based as a way to be employed, fill a gap on the resume or whatever,” Bachenheimer said. “But it’s not as easy as it appears.”

To start a home-based business, Professor Bachenheimer gave New York Daily News readers the following EXPERT ADVICE:

  • SET REALISTIC GOALS:  To launch a business does take capital, time and money, and always twice as much as you think.
  • FIND A MENTOR: Talk to people who have started home-based businesses, join entrepreneur and small business groups, and get feedback about start-ups. Smart entrepeneurs surround themselves with even smarter experts.     
  • THINK SALES: A lot of people have a romantic vision that working at home means making your own hours and making money.  But the reality is, no matter what you’re offering , you need someone to buy it.  Entrepreneurs are optimistic by nature, but don’t confuse passion and stubborness.  You need someone to actually open up their wallet and want. 
  • BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF.  Not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur.  The best are risk-takers confident in themselves and their ideas.