New NYC Program Will Help HBS Alumni Entrepreneurs Scale Their Ventures:
Launching a startup isn’t easy, but Harvard Business School is working to change that for its alumni with the start of its new RISE program. Put together by Harvard’s Rock Center for Entrepreneurship, the RISE program will help HBS graduates accelerate the growth of their ventures in New York City.
With the goal of seeing more of its alumni entrepreneurs make it big, the new HBS RISE program will offer a range of benefits and support. Planned programming will help new enterprises with the many challenges that accompany startup life—from developing culture to hiring employees, building leadership skills, managing boards, raising funds, optimizing sales, and more. The eventual goal is to help small ventures successful scale from just a handful of employees to hundreds.
In order to participate in the program, HBS alumni have to own a company that is revenue generating and has already raised $1 million in capital. These qualifications were set to help ensure that participating companies have the best chance for successful scaling.
According to Professor Thomas Eisenmann, faculty chair of the Rock Center, the RISE program is all about helping enterprises scale individually. “In the RISE program, HBS faculty members, alongside seasoned entrepreneurs, will convey best practices and frameworks to help entrepreneurs address startup challenges that can make or break a company,” he explained in a news release. “The program has been developed to leverage extensive faculty research on what it takes to successfully scale an enterprise.”
HBS alumni chosen for the program can expect to learn about scaling their businesses from both faculty and peers. RISE will be broken down into sessions, each of which will have curated content developed by other successful alumni entrepreneurs and investors. At the end of each session, a roundtable discussion will allow for candid conversation between peers where founders can discuss challenges and offer advice.
Nine HBS alumni founders have already been accepted into the first RISE cohort, including: