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Teaching Business Models Through Student Consulting Projects

Published: 28.10.2021

by Philippe Massiera


Purpose: This article aims to share practical insights regarding the changes implemented between 2016 and 2018 in a consulting programme implemented in a French business school that involves 200 to 250 bachelor’s students on a yearly basis. For five weeks, students work as consultants assisting up to 40 local entrepreneurs with the objective to strengthen the coherence and value of their business model.

Design/Methodology/Approach: Single case study Findings: Experiential approaches to teaching business models remain very demanding in terms of organization and follow-up. Based on our experience, we provide reflections about the pedagogical curriculum, useful tips for the enrolment of entrepreneurs and details about the evaluation process. We also highlight how the introduction of a business model development tool dramatically improved the overall consistency of the consulting project from both the pedagogical and managerial perspectives.

Originality/Value: Existing literature on consulting programmes predominantly focuses on consulting projects involving small businesses. When implemented with entrepreneurs, such out-of-the-classroom teaching approach is a fruitful but demanding avenue. By sharing our experiences, we expect to document helpful recommendations which could contribute to widen its adoption.

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