What is a New Business Entrepreneur (NBE)?
Mud Bay's New Business Entrepreneurs (NBEs) will be leaders who develop, test, and launch Mud Bay's Mud Bay's new businesses for dogs, cats and their owners. This is the first time we've created a role like NBE at Mud Bay so we still have a lot to learn about the role and the kind of people who will thrive in it. Keep reading to learn what we envision a Mud Bay NBE will be doing and some of the characteristics we think an ideal NBE might possess.
NBEs will study and begin to master the concepts and skills of entrepreneurship. In particular NBEs will study the Lean Startup method, Customer Development, Value Propositions, the Business Model Canvas and Blue Ocean Strategy.
NBEs will talk with, and come to understand, the wants and needs of lots of potential customers.
Visioning & Strategizing
NBEs will use what they've learned from talking with customers to define visions, strategies and business models for each of our new service businesses.
Experimenting with real customers
They'll develop, test and learn from Minimum Viable Products.
NBEs will recruit, train, mentor and lead the other muddies who are helping them operate our new service businesses.
NBEs will work closely with the muddies who will help support our new businesses and integrate them into the rest of Mud Bay. They'll work especially closely with a group of New Business Integrators, the muddies who lead Mud Bay's efforts to support and integrate our new businesses.
Performing thought experiments
Working together as a team, NBEs will test and improve their strategies and business models. They'll identify the key assumptions that underlie their strategies--the things that have to be true for each strategy to succeed and for each business model to work. They'll use feedback from Lars & Linda, the exec team and others to challenge and clarify their thinking.
To really figure something out, people usually need to immerse themselves in all of the details. So our NBEs will spend a lot of their time actually operating the new service businesses they're inventing: making deliveries, washing dogs, feeding cats etc.
Since this is a new role at Mud Bay, it will probably evolve a lot--and NBEs will play a big role in figuring out how their roles need to evolve.
Our vision of an ideal NBE is someone who...
Works with others in a way that closely aligns with How We Work Together.
Has dog expertise (at least two of our three NBEs will need solid dog expertise).
Has cat expertise (at least two of our three NBEs will need solid cat expertise).
Is customer focused: a careful, attentive listener with a powerful drive to provide what others want and need.
Is results oriented, with a strong work ethic and the ability to persevere when the going gets tough.
Has a start-up mentality--someone who's a self-starter, has the ability to invent and experiment with minimal outside resources.
Is comfortable with uncertainty--someone whose first inclination is to give something new a try, someone who is more likely to ask forgiveness afterwards than permission beforehand.
Is open-minded and has vision (the inclination to imagine a future that's different from the present).
Understands culture, someone who really gets Mud Bay's culture and has the ability to explain and further it.
Is a strategic thinker: someone who sees the big picture, someone who instinctively looks for patterns, trends and causal relationships.
Understands business finances and operations.
Is able to speak and write clearly and effectively.
Has a facility with numbers and an inclination to measure, quantify, and compare.
Has experience managing projects.
Is available (i.e., Mud Bay can adapt if they move out of their current Mud Bay role).
It's unlikely that any of our NBEs will have all of these characteristics.
Instead, we'll look to build a team of three NBEs that, taken together, has all of these characteristics in spades.