Previous page

Startup Leadership

Great Leaders Create Great Companies

Startup Leadership is a one-week program focused on the strategic business and entrepreneurship knowledge and skills needed for managing a successful company from idea to exit.

Nine out of ten startups will fail. This is the brutal reality! The Startup Leadership program aims to help you beat the odds by giving you the tools to ensure your startup has the best chance to succeed through.

  • Academic lectures and workshops by world-class professors,
  • Practical talks from experts and serial entrepreneurs, and
  • Inspiring company visits.

The intensive week will focus on building winning entrepreneurial mindsets, skills and experiences for founders and managers who seek to avoid crucial mistakes and make better decisions in running the day-to-day operations in a startup or corporate intrapreneurship project.

  • Day 1: Startup Leadership
  • Day 2: Growth Strategies and Entrepreneurship
  • Day 3: Business Model Innovation
  • Day 4: Finance and Profitability
  • Day 5: Marketing and Selling
  • Day 6–7: Ecosystem Tour and Hike in a Finnish Forest (Optional)
  • Day 8–9: Startup Event – Slush (Optional)
  • Startup Leadership: How can you be a great leader in a startup? What type of leader are you? What can you do by yourself and how can you effectively delegate tasks?
  • Growth Strategies and Entrepreneurship: How can you make winning strategies when managing a startup? How can you embrace uncertainty and leverage it to your advantage? How can you grow the startup?
  • Business Model Innovation: What are the scalable earning models and how can you leverage them to create more value for customers, the firm, investors and other stakeholders?
  • Finance and Profitability: How can you create financial models for your firm? What is relevant on a balance sheet? How should you think and communicate about money within the organization? What is the optimal pricing strategy to maximize profitability?
  • Marketing and Selling: How can you create a successful marketing campaign? Which tools can you use and when? How can you create successful sales/investor pitches? And how can you sell in person, via email/phone and online?
  • Ecosystem Tour: How do the leading startups do it? What can we learn from them? Who can we collaborate with to create more value?
  • Hike in a Finnish Forest: What can we learn from the Finnish forest?
  • Slush: how can we get the most from an event? How to network and with whom? How to approach someone? How to deliver a perfect pitch? What to say/do and how long to stay talking with one person?

Contact Us


Learn about the latest academic research and trends from top professors in the field of business management, strategic leadership and global entrepreneurship
Acquire the necessary know-how for managing and running successful startups
Become strategic, business savvy and more comfortable with uncertainty
Learn how to make better decisions and avoid crucial mistakes
Meet and discuss with like-minded people from the worlds of startups and corporate intrapreneurship


The Startup Leadership program is designed to meet the strategic business and entrepreneurship needs of individuals running and managing a company or an intrapreneurial project within a corporation. The program will help you to take the next step in your venture, develop your skills and know-how and inspire you to find solutions for current challenges.

Contact Us

It is especially recommended for

  • Founding teams in startups (CEO, CFO, CTO, CMO, COO…)
  • Project managers in corporate intrapreneurship projects
  • Technical managers who are preparing to take on a leadership position
  • Public sector bodies concerned with developing entrepreneurship
  • Investors who seek to maximize the potential from their investment portfolio

Contents and Schedule

During the intensive week, we will focus on what to do when you are in a leadership position in your startup or project. We will invite world-class professors to deliver inspirational lectures and facilitate high-octane workshops.

We will visit exciting companies, big and small, that are revolutionizing the entrepreneurship world. Throughout the visits, we will listen to and participate in discussions with experts and serial entrepreneurs. Debate is always welcome, and is a big part of the learning process!



Dr. Shailendra Vyakarnam

Director of the Bettany Centre for Entrepreneurship at Cranfield School of Management



Dr. Vyakarnam has combined academic, practitioner and policy interests to provide advice to governments and on the development of entrepreneurial ecosystems, technology commercialization and entrepreneurship education.

He has mentored entrepreneurs and held non-executive directorships of small firms in addition to developing growth programs for SMEs over several years. From 2003 to 2015 he focused on the development of practitioner-led education for entrepreneurship at the University of Cambridge Judge Business School, Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning.

Dr. Vyakarnam is specialized in board room team development across industries, business growth strategies, mentoring early stage businesses. He is familiar with most industry sectors due to the long experience of working with businesses.

Dr Vyakarnam was awarded "Best Entrepreneurship Professor" at the 2nd Asian Business Schools Awards in 2011. In 2012 he was elected to the prestigious European Academy of Science and Arts.

Dr. Riitta Lumme-Tuomala

Riitta Lumme-Tuomala’s key qualifications are in the areas of leadership, especially from the point of view of different generations at the same workplace, young potential development, talent management and individual diversity (MBTI Step I and Step II Certification) and self-leadership.

She is an experienced and frequent lecturer on the mentioned topics. Lumme-Tuomala holds a Master of Sciences degree in Economics with a major in International Marketing from the Helsinki School of Economics and EMBA degree from HSE Executive Education. She defended her DBA dissertation on Talent Management in June 2017.

Dr. Peter Zackariasson

Lecturer in marketing at University of Gothenburg

CEO at Vasa Marketing

Peter Zackariasson is associate professor in marketing at University of Gothenburg, School of Business, Economics and Law.

For over 15 years he has studied the cultural industries, with a special focus on the video game industry. The results from these research endeavours has resulted in numerous peer-reviewed articles, book, edited books, chapters and conference papers.

He has also been instrumental in enabling collaboration between arts and business faculties at University of Gothenburg. Fruitful collaborations in several research centres, e.g.: Business and Design Lab, and Centre for Game Research.

In addition he is also CEO of Vasa Marketing, a consultancy company specifically focused on providing marketing knowledge to cultural industries in order to improve the possibility of establishing strong organisations with solid consumer bases.

Fabian Sepulveda

Fabian Sepulveda is a Senior Advisor at Aalto University Executive Education. He is actively involved in Finland’s entrepreneurial ecosystem as a startup coach and Lean Launchpad® trainer, and helps organizations understand and execute Lean Startup methodologies and customer development.

Sepulveda has more than 20 years of experience in engineering, management consulting and investment banking at companies such as Lucent Technologies, A.T. Kearney, and J.P. Morgan.

He teaches Venture Formation and other courses at the Aalto Ventures Program and Aalto University Executive Education. He cofounded eyescubed, a startup in automotive technology, and also cofounded Courage Ventures Advisory, which provides entrepreneurship training and development to leading private and public organizations. He is also a cofounding Partner of Courage Ventures Management, a fund investing in health & wellness, education, and environment verticals.

Sepulveda has a PhD in International Business (Entrepreneurship) from Aalto University, an MBA in Finance and Financial Management Services from Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (Netherlands) and a BSc in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from North Carolina State University (USA).

Teemu Malmi

Teemu Malmi on laskentatoimen professori Aalto-yliopistossa.

Hän kouluttaa mm. strategia- ja kannattavuuslaskentaosuudess ja on toiminut konsulttina useille eri yrityksille mm. seuraavilta aloilta: IT, elektroniikka, energia, rahoitus, elintarvike, terveydenhoito, media, metalli, liikenne/kuljetus.

Program Fee and Registration

Program Fee

We offer an Early Bird program fee of € 3,950 (+ VAT), valid until September 1, 2018. From September 2, 2018 onwards, the fee is € 4,950 (+ VAT).

The fee includes optional activities and coaching on December 1-2 and 4-5, 2018.

Please note that the program fee does not include travel expenses or accommodation. VAT is applicable to private persons and Finnish companies.


Register for the program by November 2, 2018.

Program start