Mitchellette and Associates was founded by me in 1995 as a result of selling my last entrepreneurial venture, which was a community bank in Palm Beach, FL. The new owners, Republic Bank, headquartered in Miami, FL decided not to continue with my Chairmanship and gave me what was then considered a “Golden Parachute” but by today’s standard was a “kick-in-the-pants.”
Nevertheless, I took some time off played a zillion rounds of golf and was bored to death, which literally happens to early retirees and decided to continue to enjoy my love of SAILING and moved to San Francisco, CA where I purchased a nice sized sailboat and sailed the Bay for ten years.
It was in San Francisco that I began teaching again as I once did for the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN, where I had lived and raised my family for thirty years before the Florida Bank acquisition. My subjects were the same, my signature course on “Entrepreneurship” and before long my students started soliciting me for advice and BINGO my consulting business was born, followed by enrolling in a Doctoral Program focusing on Entrepreneurship and authoring a book, titled “Entrepreneurial Decision Making,” which is featured in this website. My consulting business really began to grow with all the worldly and academic experience I had accumulated and eventually I established offices on both the West and East Coast before I moved back here to Minneapolis, where I developed a unique business model by bringing together other professional consultants trained and experienced in various disciplines; such as, law, accounting, family planning and science, all of which created a team that has been employed as a whole unit or individually depending on the needs of the client (re: Crew).
We have become the "go to" business consulting firm representing client needs from venture creations, start-ups, initial financing, organizational development, financial restructuring, growth level and exit strategies, M &A's, and succession/family planning.
However, the fastest growing part of my business has become so profound that I am changing my on-line occupation from Business Consulting to Business Staging Consultant, since my firm is being hired to do more company clean-up tasks, such as, creating comprehensive updated business plans, including past, current and projected financial statements, company valuations for the eventual sale of the company or a strategic plan to determine if the company should focus on internal growth, acquire, merge or sell.
In addition to providing extra marketing tools to achieve the desired results along the eventual path the client chooses, including developing a website, again, specific to the mission or teasers published on the Internet through email campaigns or social media.
We are not brokers; we are the business version of the often used residential staging consultants when a homeowner wants to sell their home for the highest price they can get by adding to or taking from furniture, décor painting, carpentry etc. to make the home as attractive as possible.
Side note: we often have heard the expression “what goes around comes around,” well this new SYNERGY PARTNERSHIP approach in my practice has its roots when I worked for my Dad, who had a car dealership in St Louis and my job from grade school through high school was to clean all the used cars that came on the lot from general cleaning, detailing, mechanical and visual upgrades-all with one idea in-mind-to sell the car at the highest price possible and that is exactly what my consulting practice has morphed into and best of all it is fun and rewarding to see the end product and my client very happy with the results.
My Book Syllabus
ONLINE COURSE INTRODUCTION My book consists, of 301 pages and 11 chapters filled with case studies and other research as a way to confirm or refute basic core tenets about entrepreneurs and general advice on becoming an entrepreneur. The first two chapters deal with self-assessment exercises to determine whether the reader/learner has the “Right Stuff” to become an entrepreneur. The subsequent nine chapters follow a sequential order of preparing to become an entrepreneur, as described in the syllabus and curriculum module below including venture selection, marketing, business logistics, business plan preparation and presentation, capital formation, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) fund raising offerings and options and exit strategies. The book is filled with my personal case studies gathered from my career as an entrepreneur and later as a bank executive-lending money to entrepreneurs and of course teaching the subject as my signature course combined with my research on entrepreneurshipin pursuit of my Ph.D., which I have yet tocomplete. My book may be purchased from Barnes and Noble, Amazon or most retail book sellers in Hardback, Soft back and eBook formats.
You will now be called the “Learner” as in the “Online Distance Learner” education medium concept.
The learner will focus on studying all eight of the above modules, interacting with me via email, phone and Skype with a COHORT GROUP working through “GO-TO-MEETING” upon completion of the modules, the learner will then prepare his/her feasibility plan according to their choice of an entrepreneurial venture. The learner will then submit their plan via regular mail or email attached, to me, for a critique of the venture and the plan’s level of proficiency. I will then make recommendations, again via email and/or any of the above medium.. The learner can then revise the plan and resubmit, only once as part of the original cost of the course, otherwise, I will charge on a per hour basis for further assistance in perfecting the plan. This approach will most probably only apply to the learner, who is serious about startinghis/her own business and wants to continue the dialogue to actually launch theventure.
FYI:I will only accept a feasibility plan (financial section excluded) not a business plan, which includes a detailed financial section as part of the basic course cost. If a learner wishes to submit a business plan, there would be an extra cost for my review, which will be determined based on the complexity of this section (re: module 5 item 4 for more detail).
Note:All learners must purchase my book titled Entrepreneurial Decision Making before enrolling in this online course.
CURRICULUM (To develop a knowledge base for the learner to benefit from my own experiences)
IDENTY SEARCH(Chapters I & II)
Engage in rational cognitive thought in determining his/her career path as an entrepreneur
Introduction to the course and the instructor, including student participation and stated objectives
Case study analysis
THE RIGHT STUFF (Chapter II)
Time to look into the mirror and see who you are and what makes you unique
Self-analysis, character assessment, preparatory to a venture selection, which will include personality match-ups (fitting the right venture with the right personality, interest and skill level)
DEVELOPING THE VENTURE (Chapters II & III)
Be able to match his/her venture with both their inherited and acquired skills for a better fit and a “risk avoidance” analysis.
Exploring the business opportunities existing in the market place; such as, start-up-existing businesses and franchises
Subdividing the above three categories into specific potential; such as, if a learnerwishes to explore a “start-up” then what kind? A dot COM company or a cookie company, etc.
Making the match fit the venture
LEGAL STRUCTURING (Chapter IV)
Employ my “building block” approach to create and structure an organization as the platform with which to launch the venture.
A study of the legal definitions of forming a business (Proprietorship, S or C corporation, etal.)
Selecting the right organizational structure/form for each student’s venture (what is the best structure for you)
STRUCTURING THE ORGANIZATION (Chapter V)
Implementing the legal structuring with organizational objectives
Deciding whether your medium and long term goals; such as, going public is in your best interest and exploring the alternatives and other options.
ORGANIZATIONAL PLANNING (Chapter VI)
Acquire tactical and strategic skills in organizational planning.
1. You have worked very hard assembling all of the components of your company, now it is time to hire and/or appoint a hierarchy.
2. Who will be President and VP? Who will be in charge of sales or accounting etal?
PREPARATION OF THE BUSINESS/FEASIBILITY PLAN (Chapter VII)
Develop a business/feasibility plan and presentation skills for a successful reception fromthe various target audiences the entrepreneur will need to address
Chronology and review of building a business/feasibility plan
Reviewing a business/feasibility plan model
Fitting and first draft in class learner editing of their business/feasibility plans preparatory to their presentations (module eight)
Note: The difference between a business plan and a feasibility plan is the lack of a financial section inheritant in a feasibility plan vs. a complete financial section on a business plan. We will be preparing a feasibility plan with the option to add a financial section per the information cited below.
MARKETING THE VENTURE (Chapter VIII)
Bring to market their vision, be it product or service
A study of the basic principles of marketing
Matching the most effective marketing approach with the learner’s venture selection (store fronts vs. dot coms for example)
Creating a service or product specific marketing plan as part of the whole business/feasibility plan
Creating the marketing plan Product pricing Advertising & promotion
CAPITAL FORMATION (Chapter IX)
Develop a knowledge base to successfully raise capital and explore the many venues available for capital formation
Exploring the many sources and the evolution of capital
Preparing for the search for capital
PUBLIC FUNDING (INITIAL IPO) (Chapter X)
SEC fund raising offering(s), options and descriptions
Explaining Capital markets
EXIT STRATEGIES (Chapter XI)
Understand the exit strategies as part of the “risk/reward” effort in building an entrepreneurial venture including potential investors
Winding down the business from strength
Liquidating the business from weakness
Other reasonable options (to acquire or beacquired)
Safety nets for investors
PRESENTATION OF THE BUSINESS PLAN (FINAL EXAM)
Though not an exam in the literal sense, it is a serious critique
The learner can send his/her plan via email attached or regular mail
I will then critique the plan as presented and we will then discuss the various aspects and recommend improvements to the plan, which can be re-submitted only once as part of the initial course
Note: It is my intention to have a visual critique of the presentation skills of the learner in presenting the plan to intended audiences as I continue to add technologies that will allow this to happen; otherwise if the learner is serious he/she could always video tape a mock presentation and sent it to me forvaluation.
OPTION FINANCIAL STATEMENT PREPARATION
Overview and introduction
Review and interpret existing model
Design a simple financial plan to fit a feasibility plan thus converting the former into a business plan.
Note: This segment is an option that the learner can exercise to enhance their understanding of preparing and presenting a financial plan as part of the feasibility plan, which will then truly become a business plan.