By Bruce M Firestone,
B Eng (Civil), M Eng-Sci, PhD
[Please also refer to–Bootstrapped: Things Every Tech or Other Startup Needs to Know about Self-Capitalization, https://profbruce.tumblr.com/post/152682933059/bootstrapped-things-every-tech-or-other-startup]
The Business Model is
supplanting the Business Plan in many organizations. It not only describes the
complete business ecosystem, it is a mechanism to discover profitable new
relationships amongst stakeholder groups. The Business Model is more resilient
than a plan and harder for competitors to copy. The Business Model today has 12
main elements—flow chart, value proposition, financial model, benchmarking,
effective marketing, talent acquisition, self capitalization, differentiated
value, cash conversion cycle, integration of the Internet and Mobile Internet,
leverage and social overlay. It is possible today, for the first time in history,
to make service businesses scalable and mass customization possible due to the
advent of the Internet and Mobile Internet.
The Business Model (BM)
has come a long way in the last few years from a one page pictogram (or
flowchart) of the ‘engine of a business’ to a many faceted model that fully
describes the ‘engine room’ of an enterprise.
Recall what a basic BM
is—clients are usually on the RHS (Right Hand Side) of the page, the business
is in the middle and suppliers are on the LHS. Typically, products and services
flow from left to right—from suppliers to the enterprise where some type of
value is added and then through the organization to their clients and
customers. Usually, money flows in the opposite direction—from clients to the enterprise
and then from there to suppliers when they are paid. Occasionally, these
directions can reverse with money flowing to clients and customers, for
example, and information or marketing opportunities flowing in the opposite
There is an orthogonal
dimension in every model—a marketing dimension, which is where each
organization demonstrates how they acquire clients and customers in a cost
A fuller picture of every
enterprise is formed when at least two dimensions on either side (and sometimes
more) are included in the model. That is, the clients of the company’s clients
and who the suppliers to the company’s suppliers also become known. In this
way, new relationships amongst players and stakeholders can be discovered and creative
new ways to enhance every organization can be found. Each enterprise is now
being looked at as part of an overall business ecosystem and when they are able
to secure place as a liked and trusted part of an ecosystem, business longevity
is likely to increase.
Steve Jobs insisted that
AT&T provide Apple with a share of its monthly subscriber revenues in
return for exclusive access to the iPhone for two years (Wall Street Journal,
How Steve Jobs Played Hardball In iPhone Birth, February 17th, 2007,https://online.wsj.com/public/article/SB117168001288511981-euxzmjNFZTZhA_2z8OBtD6GK900_20070224.html?mod=blogs).
With this single strategic move, Jobs revolutionized yet another industry’s
business model—cell phone manufacturers went from selling a ‘shrink wrapped’
gadget for a one-time payment in a brutally competitive market that was racing
to the bottom to an industry with multiple sources of revenues, some of which
Imagine how much harder
Steve Jobs and Apple would have to work today and how much lower their
productivity as measured in terms of revenue per employee would be without
recurring revenues from iPhone app sales and revenues, advertising revenues on
their iOS platform, downloads of paid content from iTunes and iBooks plus a
share of their carriers’ subscriber fees? We estimated that Apple’s Internal
Rate of Return on the iPhone is an incredible 288% p.a. (https://www.eqjournal.org/?p=1714).
But it wasn’t the iPhone per se
that propelled Apple to becoming the most valuable company on the planet; it
was the iPhone’s business model that did that.
Was this unprecedented
move by AT&T (to give Apple access to a share of its monthly subscriber
revenues) worthwhile from the telecom’s POV? Well, Wired.com (https://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2012/01/iphone-att-q4-sales)
reported that the iPhone represented 80% of all AT&T smartphone activations
in the last quarter of 2011 during which they added 9.4 million new
subscribers, 50% more than in any previous quarter in company history.
Sam Palmisano, when he
was CEO of IBM, told BusinessWeek (April 3rd, 2006) why he places a great deal
of emphasis on the importance of business model innovation, “… with product innovation, it’s a certainty that
your competition is shortly going to copy what you have done. With
business-model innovation, though, if you can come up with a unique way of
doing things, it’s much tougher to react to.”
The Complete Model
The complete Business
Model is today made of a dozen elements—
1. A one page pictogram
(flowchart) showing the whole business
ecosystem (the enterprise embedded in a network of
relationships with clients, clients’ clients, suppliers and suppliers’
suppliers together with an orthogonal marketing dimension showing how the
enterprise acquires customers and clients in a cost effective manner.)
2. A spreadsheet which calculates the value
proposition for a single customer or client; it demonstrates in
a clear and concise way how a new enterprise/product/service/division creates
either lower costs or higher revenues (or some combination of both) for a
single customer. The corollary here is that organizations should insist that
their suppliers provide them with their value proposition too. They should not
expect less of their suppliers than they do of themselves.
3. A second spreadsheet develops a financial
model for the enterprise. From this model, each firm is able to
measure the impact each additional client has on the top line of the firm. The
firm is also able to test the sensitivity of its top line to, say, changes in
success rate in any of its marketing channels, changes in its COGS (Cost of
Goods Sold) and other variables. The value proposition for clients and their
impact on the enterprise (which is measured by the financial model) are mirror
images of each other. The business ecosystem is complete when suppliers provide
the organization with their value proposition and they also have a financial
model of how their client’s organization impacts them. Why should any
organization care if their suppliers have workable financial models? Long term
viability of every firm depends, in part, on maintaining a sustainable and
efficient supply chain.
4. Each business model should be benchmarked
against the best-of-breed in their industry. We developed a Business Model Scoring Test,https://www.old.dramatispersonae.org/BusinessModels/BusinessModelScoringTest.htm
to assist in this regard.
5. Each enterprise will not be successful unless it can acquire clients or
customers in a cost effective way. If Super Bowl commercials are needed before
acquiring any launch clients, the new enterprise is unlikely to be successful.
If any new organization requires heroic efforts to land clients, they won’t be
around long. So Guerrilla Marketing,
Social Media and Market Channel Development have to
be part of the marketing dimension in every business model. This is just as
true for NGOs, Not-For-Profits and Charities. These types of enterprises need
to have complete Business Models including financial model, value proposition
and other elements described here. They have a fiduciary duty to be efficient
and effective too.
6. Having a great business model without the ability to execute is not very
useful. That is, execution counts, ideas by themselves, even great ideas, are
not enough. We developed an online ECQ
Testto test individual entrepreneurial ability:https://www.old.dramatispersonae.org/ECQTest/ECQ(ns)TestAuto.htm.
“Once a musician has enough ability to get into a
top music school, the thing that distinguishes one performer from another is
how hard he or she works. That’s it. And what’s more, the people at the very
top don’t work just harder or even much harder than everyone else. They work
much, much harder,” Malcolm Gladwell, Outliers: The Story of
7. There are business
models that do not easily lend themselves to entrepreneurial startups.
Typically, they require enormous amounts of capital that simply cannot be
raised by entrepreneurs. Business models that use Bootstrap Capital and Self Capitalization techniques to
fund their new startups are usually more focused on customer needs, customer
acquisition and building cashflow. Strong cashflow is clearly part of improving
survivorship rates and low cost or free bootstrap capital can lead to higher
Rates of Return (both project IRR, Internal Rate of Return, and ROE, Return on
Equity, will likely increase). Greater use of self capitalization techniques in
early stages of startup development will also reduce the need for either Angel
or VC capital which will increase the likelihood that original founders will
retain control for a longer period. Having launch customers and growing
cashflow improve valuations and improve negotiating positions of entrepreneurs
vis–à–vis sophisticated investors.
8. Most startups do not necessarily have to find a never-before-tried-idea.
Perhaps the reason it has never been tried before is that it is a bad idea.
There are very few startups like Priceline.com (where each customer sets a
price instead of the business) or Fed-Ex (pioneer of the airline hub and spoke
system that made overnight package delivery possible). But at a minimum, each
organization requires something that differentiates it from existing
firms—there must be some type of innovation brought to bear on the industry. Differentiated Value and the
ability to be able to succinctly explain it are essential. Imagine YouTube, for
a moment, having been around circa the latter half of the 18th Century. Perhaps
a video of Mozart’s last concert or Albert Einstein’s speech when he won his
Nobel Prize in physics in 1921 would now be available? (YouTube actually has
one minute and 22 seconds of Einstein speaking in Stockholm, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aOAzNYVvaNc.)
What would such a video archive be worth today? What if Pinterest.com had been
around since the 1800s and you could see what else interested James Watt
(inventor of the steam engine)? Test and discover enterprise differentiated
value using thought experiments like these (by thinking backwards as well as
“I’m actually as proud of the things we haven’t done
as the things I have done. Innovation is saying no to 1,000 things,”
9. The Cash Conversion Cycle should be
determined for each business model. What use is a fast growing business if it
goes bankrupt in the process? This occurs when the CCC is too long which means
that it either takes too long to collect receivables or the organization is
paying for inputs too soon before being able to deliver its products or
services or inventories are too high.
10. Jack Welch when asked upon his retirement from GE, ‘What was the single
most important invention during his decades with GE?’ pointed to the Internet
and said it’s ‘the biggest change I have ever seen.’ The Internet (and the Mobile Internet) must be integrated
into every business model. More on this later.
11. Building leverage into every model is essential; this
multiplies the force and effect of effort, time, brainpower and capital.
Leverage in business models comes from ten primary sources—i. HR (Human
Resources), ii. OPM (Other People’s Money), iii. forced savings, iv.
innovation, v. capital equipment, vi. location, vii. network effects, viii.
marketing channels that reduce a marketing problem from one to many to one to a
few, ix. branding, co-branding, co-opetition and co-creation and, finally, x. inflation.
Test your business model by asking yourself do you have great Human Resources,
are you using Other People’s Money, benefiting from forced savings, innovating,
do you have a great location or brand, does your enterprise benefit from
network effects or marketing channels that allow you to connect cost
effectively with your clients or customers and reduces that task from one to
many to one to a few and is your capital equipment top notch/best-of-breed
& do you benefit from inflation? If so, you are probably maximizing your
“In looking for people to hire, you look for three
qualities: integrity, intelligence and energy. And if you don’t have the first,
the other two will kill you. You think about it; it’s true. If you hire
somebody without [integrity], you really want them to be dumb and lazy,”
12. Business Models with
a social overlay can
create a coherent community around each enterprise which make it difficult to
knock off. They also provide a platform for a separate way of giving back to
society often through a not-for-profit
organization bolted onto the model. Such bolt-ons can become
independent, self-funded marketing channels for the for-profit operation.
Button’s Business Model
Ray Cao and Aditya Shah
are both young engineers from the University
of Waterloo. Now what can
they possibly know about the beauty products industry for a client base that is
approximately 98% female and growing fast? It turns out that Ray and Aditya and
their small crew of hackers and marketing mavens know a lot about their
industry—they are reshaping the way it delivers samplers to their consumers.
like L’Oreal, Moroccan Oil, Dermalogica and dozens of others would employ
agencies to go into malls and high end stores to hand out samples to consumers
picked out nearly randomly. How much data did they collect? Almost nothing.
Ray and Aditya are highly
analytical and believe in the value of tracking metrics to help build an
enterprise and make it smarter. So they decided to do something about this part
of the industry and, in doing so, have created one of the most innovative
business models yet seen.
Their value proposition
is, “We’re the Netflix of the beauty
products industry but with e-Harmony for brains,” says Cao.
Every consumer who signs
up is asked to complete a profile letting LooseButton.com know what type of
products they are interested in. Then once a month, a Luxe Box is delivered to
their door by CPC (Canada Post Corporation) or USPS with travel-size samplers
from suppliers they are interested in. This is a form of mass
customization—every Luxe Box can contain different products matching individual
consumer interests with the right type of supplier products with a few
surprises on the upside thrown in.
Clients respond well to
LB surveys and have independently started to record YouTube videos of
themselves receiving, using and experimenting with Luxe Box products. Some of
these videos are getting phenomenal numbers of views (over 10,000) spreading the
word for LB at no cost to LB. Tribes of makeup evangelists are forming around
the strongest influencers in their ecosystem.
What’s also interesting
is that clients are paying $12 per month ($10 if they sign up for a year) to
receive their monthly try-before-you-buy Luxe Box filled with samples that LB’s
suppliers provide them for free. There’s still more cleverness here. In
addition to providing them with free samplers, suppliers like L’Oreal and
Moroccan Oil pay a rights fee
to be included in the Luxe Box which means that LB is in the enviable position
of being paid not only by clients but suppliers as well.
Ray and Aditya have also
implemented some negative cost marketing—organizations are paying them to
market Luxe Box for them… The Globe and Mail, Chatelaine and other
publications, desperately trying to hold onto their readers, buy Luxe Box
subscriptions (at around 80% of retail price) to give to their most loyal
customers vastly extending LB’s reach and increasing its growth rate as well.
The Founders won’t say exactly how many clients they have but it’s over 10,000.
Based in Toronto on Bay
Street in shared co-worker space, their Ottawa tie-in was they wanted to use
By-ward market-based Shopify’s platform but instead had to move to Recurly.com
because the former is not set up for recurring payments (aka, subscription
billing). Shopify is set up for dozens or hundreds of SKUs, LB has only one.
This is a tough business
to knock off in the sense that until the Internet can download mini portions of
makeup or beauty potions and as long as Canada Post Corporation and USPS keep
going, they’re in great shape.
Here is LooseButton.com’s
business model circa 2012. See below. Ray and Aditya have plans to change this
model in 2013—adding product sales—because their clients are demanding that.
When asked why they named
their company ‘Loose Button’, Ray says, “Buttons
are fasteners that connect two pieces of cloth. We intelligently connect
consumers and brands.”
They started LB right out
of University and have an Advisory Board with luminaries such as Harry Rosen
and Jagoda Pike (former publisher of the Toronto Star) sitting on it. “Mentoring helped us a lot,” says
Aditya. “We decided not to go into the
apparel space since it was already saturated. We went into the market research
and product discovery side instead.”
Their biz coach comes in
once per week and makes them set goals, track metrics and live up to their
word. Internet startups that track their metrics grow 7x faster than those that
don’t according to Startup Genome Report 01, Max Marmer, Bjoern Lasse Herrmann,
Ron Berman, 2011.
They are also part of
Impact.org which focuses on fast growing enterprises. Started out of Waterloo, it is now a
Both Ray and Aditya were
part of the coop program at Waterloo
and they each had six tries to figure out that they wanted to do during their
course of studies. What it taught them was that they didn’t like working for
other people (Ray at a Wall Street firm and Aditya at a large accounting firm
and then various tech companies).
LB has plans for other
Boxes—perhaps another line focused on Men’s products, possibly a foodie
version. They intentionally called their first Box something different from
their company name so they could conquer other verticals later. It’s what RIM
tried to do with Blackberry and Playbook.
There wasn’t much to
change in their biz model other than suggesting that they might consider adding
a social layer over the whole thing—the follow/follower model is a powerful one
which knits the community more closely together and makes it even tougher to
knock off. They might integrate the Twitter API and allow customers and
suppliers to follow top influencers in their ecosystem on a more coherent basis
than just stumbling onto one of their YouTube videos.
Other changes might
include adding a Qricket Code to each Luxe Box (that’s a QR code where you can
change the website it resolves to after printing them) so that, like ET, each
Box can call home. Maybe there will also one day be a LooseButton.org to give
back to their community too.
Business models today are
not just about making money—enterprises that are all about the money seem to
have none and those that are about building insanely great products and
services plus making a contribution to society seem to have it all. This is a
Gen Y (and Steve Jobs) phenomenon. So bolting on to their existing model a
standalone not-for-profit dedicated to say health and fitness and with its own
sources of funding and marketing to their existing business model would not
only help LB, it would help the wider community cope with issues like obesity,
diet, lifetime fitness, abuse of drugs, alcohol and cigarettes.
Their model as it exists
today where they get paid by consumers and suppliers plus other organizations
pay them to market their product for them while forming an intelligent
community that is hard to knock off is, frankly, amazing.
Internet and the Mobile Internet into
Everything You Do
The Internet is making it
feasible to do things with business models that were never possible before
A. Create custom
outputs from standard inputs
Unlike Henry Ford who said
you can have whatever color of car you want so long as it is black, the
Internet allows an enterprise to provide a nearly unlimited choice by combining
standard inputs into a myriad of customized products or services. Every
experience with an Internet-mediated entity can be wildly varied.
Products and Services
B. Reverse out
the work to clients and suppliers
For example, a Spa could
allow clients to pick and choose amongst services and so tailor each visit to
their individual preferences, tastes and needs. Since they are doing all the
work of customizing their next visit (adding hair styling, massage therapy,
pedicure, manicure, dietary consultation, yoga class and hair coloring and then
deleting half the services because, say, they exceed current budgetary
constraints), the enterprise doesn’t care how many times they change their
minds before hitting the ‘submit’ button.
C. Embed each
enterprise in a trusted, networked business ecosystem made up of clients,
suppliers, clients’ clients, suppliers’ suppliers and the organization itself
To show how this works,
ask for example the question, ‘Who are the clients of a Spa’s clients?’ Since
most clients for most spas are probably women, the clients of the Spa’s clients
are likely to be men. And what do men want? They want to purchase gift
certificates from the Spa. By examining the nodes and links in a business
model, it is often possible to discover new ways of delivering value in the
ecosystem as well as discovering new marketing channels and supply chains as
Matchmaking—directly connecting clients to suppliers making service industries
scalable for the first time ever
Returning to the example
of the Spa, their employees could be treated not as employees but as suppliers.
In this way, if a client wants to have a manicure, pedicure, massage and hair
colouring, the Internet or the Mobile Internet allows the spa to create a
backend system that matches them up much as, say, eHarmony.com or
PlentyOfFish.com do. Match making is not a widely understood phenomenon.
Service industries are notoriously labor intensive and hard to scale; i.e.,
more output requires more inputs in a more or less linear relationship or,
worse, the ratio of marginal output to marginal input might be less than one.
This happens when a service business is too complex to manage effectively as it
grows. In consulting, that size is often one person. As soon as the enterprise
grows beyond a single practioner, their earnings per person may actually go
down while the time to produce those earnings goes up. This is not a happy
event and explains there are so many one person service firms in real estate,
management consulting, IT consulting, accounting, legal, plumbing, electrical,
carpentry, the Mr. Fix It industry, roof repair, mechanic, appliance repair, PC
repair, Network management and so forth. Internet matchmaking is likely to
change all of these industries by making them scalable. Industry consolidation
and larger average firm sizes are likely occurrences.
communicate planet-wide through social media and other Internet tools at almost
What is interesting is
that some of these communication tools which are free to use like social media
powerhouses Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Facebook produce a
powerful, newish form of communication—the viral message. It’s newish (as
opposed to new) because the chain letter permitted something similar before.
But it’s powerful.
F. Crowd sourcing
(using the Internet as intermediary) means relying on the wisdom of the crowd
to, for example, pick and vote on stories for news agglomeration sites like
Google can serve up ads
to people who are searching for, say, digital cameras. Facebook, on the other
hand, by mining its d-base, can serve up digital camera ads to new Moms in New Jersey who have
never posted any photos of their kids. FB can also advertise wedding
photographers in Vancouver
to women who have just changed their status from ‘single’ to ‘engaged’. In ‘The
Facebook Effect’, David Kirkpatrick points out that Google’s style of
advertising (providing information to people who already know what they are
looking for, at least in general terms) makes up 20% of all advertising. The
rest is brand advertising meant to target people who have not yet made a buying
decision or don’t know what they are looking for. That is Facebook’s specialty
and you can understand why Kirkpatrick thinks FB will ultimately be a hugely
successful commercial enterprise.
Organizations mine their
customer (or supplier) interactions for intelligence. For example, Amazon asks
questions such as, ‘Would you like to see what other people who bought this
(book, CD, video, etc.) also bought?’ These suggestion engines result in
significant increases in average order size and volume of sales.
H. User generated
This is another form of
reversing out the work to customers and suppliers. It underpins the business
models of YouTube.com, Threadless.com, Facebook, Twitter and many other new
Google is an example of
network effects—the more people who use their search engine, the better their
algorithm is which brings more users which brings more data which delivers
greater accuracy which results in more ads served in a self-reinforcing
virtuous circle. It is more difficult to produce network effects in a gated
community which is why Google+ is likely to struggle while Twitter flourishes.
Business modeling is a
relatively new field of research and practice; it will undoubtedly evolve
extensively in just a few years.
Business modeling may be
superseding business planning in many ways because, as successful Generals
know, the best battle plan ever created changes the instant it comes into
contact with the enemy. Business models change too when they come into contact
with the marketplace and the supply chain and they evolve over time as each
organization comes to know and better understand the relationships implicit in
their business ecosystems. Also business models are much harder to copy than
any single product or service and, if an organization gets them right, they can
create amazing new (sustainable) enterprises.
As former student Daniel
Beauchamp once said, “Your competitors
can copy what you are doing now but what they can’t know and can’t copy is what
you are going to do next.” Dwight D. Eisenhower said it a bit
differently, “Plans are worthless, but planning
intrapreneurs and product managers with a solid business model know that their
implementation and execution of it will test their entrepreneurial skill set
and, while they set goals each day and plan out each day and create To Do lists
each day, they also know they always have to be flexible as circumstances
change and new opportunities and challenges multiply around them.
The Internet is having a
profound impact on the way business models are designed and implemented. The
more that the Internet and Mobile Internet are incorporated in new or existing
models, the more they are likely to prosper. The Internet is just a teenager
and is likely to subsume everything in its path over the coming decades.
Business modeling and the
integration of the Internet into Business Models are key factors as
entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs try to decode the DNA of successful startups
and product launches.
The $100 Startup:
Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future,
Chris Guillebeau, Crown Business, New
Strategy, W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne, Harvard Business
School Press, 2005.
Business Model Generation, Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur, John Wiley
and Sons, NJ, 2010.
Co-Creating Unique Value with Customers, The Future of Competition, C.K.
Prahalad and Venkat Ramaswamy, Harvard Business school Press, 2004.
Co-Creating Unique Value with Customers, The Future of Competition, C.K.
Prahalad and Venkat Ramaswamy, Harvard Business school Press, 2004.
Co-opetition’, Brandenburger and Nalebuff, Harvard Business
School and Yale School of
Management. (See also Co-opetition Interactive).
Crossing the Chasm: Marketing and Selling High-Tech Products to Mainstream
Customers, Geoffrey A. Moore, Harper, 1999.
Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose, Tony Hsieh,
Hachette Books, June 2010.
Good to Great, Jim Collins, Harper Business, 2001.
Guerrilla Publicity, Jay Conrad Levinson, Rick Frishman and Jill Lublin, Adams Media, 2002.
Inside the Tornado: Marketing Strategies from Silicon
Valley’s Cutting Edge, Geoffrey A. Moore, HarperCollins, 1999.
Outliers: The Story of Success, Malcolm Gladwell, Little, Brown and Company,
Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape our Decisions, Dan Ariely,
Purple Cow, Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable, Seth Godin, Penguin
Group, New York,
ReWork, Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, Crown Publishing Group, New York, 2010.
Seizing the White Space: Business Model Innovation for Growth and Renewal, Mark
W. Johnson, Harvard
Success Made Simple: An Inside Look at Why Amish Businesses Thrive, Erik
Wesner, Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated, 2010.
The Black Swan, The Impact of the Highly Improbable, Nassim Nicholas Taleb,
Random House, New York,
The E Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About
It, Michael E. Gerber, HarperCollins,
The Facebook Effect: The Inside Story of the Company That is Connecting the
World, David Kirkpatrick, Simon and Schuster,
The Ingenuity Gap: How can we solve the Problems of the Future, Thomas
Homer-Dixon, Alfred A. Knopf, New
The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book That Will Change the Way You Do
Business, Clayton Christensen, Harper Business, 2011.
The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell, Little Brown and Company, 2000.
Bruce M Firestone, B Eng
(Civil), M Eng-Sci, PhD
Bruce M Firestone is best
known as a professor, entrepreneur and founder of NHL hockey team, the Ottawa
Senators and their home arena, Scotiabank
Place, as well as Author, Quantum Entity Trilogy,
Entrepreneurs Handbook II and Urban Nirvana (2015).
Firestone is Executive Director
of Exploriem.org, a Canadian registered Not-For-Profit corporation focused on
educating and mentoring entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs and artpreneurs in Canada and
around the world. He is also coaching and teaching via Learn By Doing School,
an organization dedicated to providing student entrepreneurs with access to
research, education and a network of high achievers not available elsewhere.
Prof Bruce is also an effective keynote speaker for organizations with a
positive focus on creating opportunity for their stakeholder group.
Prof Bruce has launched
or helped launch more than 172 startups in fields including tech, real estate,
design, art and services. He advises clients on business modeling,
self-financing, smart marketing, social media, differentiated value, strategic
selling and business development, market channel development, harnessing the
Internet and mobile web, urban design, real estate development, design
economics, product management, sponsorship, fundraising and development
economics as well as issues related to entrepreneurial organizations including
not-for-profits, NGOs and charities.
In May of 2006, Dr
Firestone joined the University
of Ottawa’s Telfer School
of Management at as its first Entrepreneur-in-Residence. He previously taught
or studied at McGill University (Bachelor of Civil Engineering), Laval
University, Harvard University, University of Western Ontario, University of
New South Wales (Master of Engineering-Science, Traffic and Transportation),
Australian National University (PhD in Urban Economics) and Carleton
University. Prof Bruce is now Entrepreneurship Ambassador for the Telfer School.
Dr Firestone has been an
operations research engineer, real estate developer, hockey executive,
professor of architecture, engineering, business and entrepreneurship, real
estate broker (with Century 21 Explorer Realty Inc), writer, researcher,
columnist and novelist. He is a peerless husband and father of five great kids
and one fine grandson.
His motto is: “Making Each Day Count”.
Dr Bruce M Firestone, B
Eng (Civil), M Eng-Sci, PhD. Founder, Ottawa Senators; Broker, Century 21
Explorer Realty Inc; email@example.com, real estate and business coach, 613-762-8884
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