When the Ecole Hotelière the Lausanne invited us to run a design workshop on Business Model Innovation, we got immediately enthusiastic about the idea. The project blended two key elements for success: building a learning experience around real entrepreneurship projects, and applying Business Design as a strategic lever to drive new growth and achieve competitive advantage.
The students of the eMBA were challenged to rethink the business models of two startups from EHL’s Business incubator, within the framework of their Strategic Management course led by Professor Blal.
In the weeks prior to the workshop, the students were provided with the guidelines and some useful tools to level out their understanding of the Design process. During this time, each group went out on their research of the business environment and the understanding of the main challenges and opportunities they were facing.
During the workshop, we focused on two essential parts of the design process: Understanding and Creation. We put special emphasis on understanding the context and analyzing current trends and paradigm shifts to get inspired for the ideation phase. Then we used different tools to select, design and prototype alternative solutions for redesigning each company’s Business Model.
The week after the workshop, the groups presented their final proposals to the management of both start-ups to be further tested, validated and implemented by their teams. The outcomes proved not only the students’ understanding of the design process, but their ability to address and develop innovative solutions to real business challenges.
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