Michael McCausland’s first career was to be a licensed operator of commercial nuclear power plants. This career path also saw him found a consulting company focused on nuclear plants in the U.S. and abroad. But a second career had Michael lead a non-profit organization that launched a global network to help grassroots entrepreneurs start micro and small businesses in emerging economies.
Michael came to the MIT Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp looking for a better training model to support the launch of larger, growth oriented businesses. “During the work in our non-profit we were successful in launching thousands of sustainable micro and small businesses in 25 countries. But micro businesses don’t hire people or bring transformation to the local community. We were looking for a business training model that could be implemented quickly, add real world value, and provide a comprehensive and systematic approach to entrepreneurship. I researched educational institutions, incubators, accelerators, and private business training solutions. The best thing I could find was at MIT.”
Michael started by going through MIT’s entrepreneurship MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) Entrepreneurship 101: Who is your Customer? and Entrepreneurship 102: What can you do for your Customer? and began to apply the concepts to formulate the development and launch of a new training company called the Leadership Institute For Entrepreneurs (LIFE). “By the time I finished the MOOCs I was hooked! I had to go to the Bootcamp. I needed to finalize the startup plans for our new venture, and I wanted learn about the model MIT was using for their bootcamp and why it was so successful.”
Following the bootcamp, Michael returned home to finalize the launch of his new venture. LIFE is focused on help emerging entrepreneurs with a whole product solution and ecosystem ranging from ideation to operations and scaling and includes opportunities for funding and connection to a global community of subject matter experts and strong relationships for business growth and development.
LIFE launched their first prototype Entrepreneurship Bootcamp in October 2016 in Colorado Springs, CO. The bootcamp had 18 students, representing 6 countries, with 4 mentors (2 alumni from the MIT Bootcamp!) and 5 Demo Day Judges. Michael adds, “Our first bootcamp was awesome, overwhelming, exhausting, and an absolute home run! We could not have done it without the help and experience I gained at MIT!”
“The MIT Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp was one of the most transformational experiences in my life. And that’s saying a lot.” Michael adds. “From getting the required pre-work completed to getting into the Bootcamp to the actual day-to-day intensive learning experience at the Bootcamp (teamwork, practical application of the model, demo day experience, friendships and the connections for life) all worked together to significantly transform my thinking and my actions.”