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MGMT-301-DE: Starting Your Own Sustainable Business

Learn from Sustainable Business pioneer Roxanne Quimby, the founder of Burt’s Bees.
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October 7 - November 10

The full course runs October 7 to November 10 and may be taken for credit or non-credit. Students may also choose to attend individual weeks non-credit. 

Earn the Sustainable Business Plan Badge
By completing this five-week course, students obtain the Sustainable Business Plan badge, which can be displayed on your LinkedIn profile. Badges from Unity College are verified through Acclaim / Credly.

Five-week Course | October 7 – November 10

Are you interested in starting your own business? Do you want to grow your current business? In this 5-week experience, you will work with Roxanne Quimby, founder of Burt’s Bees, and Sarah Lozanova, a sought-after sustainable business consultant, to be inspired and engaged in finding ways to jumpstart your own business. Ms. Quimby will be available for several live call-in Q&A sessions throughout the course, and will award start-up grants to the business plans that have the most promise!

MGMT-301-DE: Creating a Healthy Hive: Start your own Sustainable Business 

This course is ideal for:

  • Those interested in starting their own business
  • Experienced entrepreneurs who want to learn more about running a sustainable business

Ways to engage in this course:

Weekly Business Modules:

Week 1: Creating a Vision for a Successful Green Business and Brand Value Through Differentiation

October 7 – 13
Elevate your start-up business ideas to be competitive in the market and in line with your values. Create unique brands that distinguish themselves from others in the market by establishing a differentiated niche. Learn how they have their own personality and can take on a life of their own!

Week 2: Choosing the Right Business Type and Organizational Structure

October 14 – 20
Learn how to choose a legal structure to help you make important financial decisions for your small business. Develop management techniques to maximize employee morale, productivity, and provide an excellent customer experience.

Week 3: Data-Driven Decision Making, Financial Planning and Funding Strategies

October 21 – 27
Make smart decisions using data and analytics to boost your business’s agility and productivity and avoid common startup pitfalls. Become an expert of your business’s financial side, including the estimated start-up costs, revenue projections, operating expenses, and financing options.

Week 4: Setting Measurable and Meaningful Organizational Core Values

October 28 – November 3
Develop core values that shape the vision of your business and create your company’s culture, identity, and marketplace niche. Learn how to implement sustainable business practices throughout your company.

Week 5: Understanding the Lifecycle of Your Organization: Marketing to Exiting

November 4 – 10
Develop your marketing strategy to reach your business goals. Use these new skills to further your business vision and create brand value. Develop the tools required to run a successful business over the life of an organization. Create an exit strategy for your small business strategic plan.

By the end of the course you will:

1. Identify essential business and management skills required to be a successful entrepreneur
2. Create a basic business plan with cost and revenue projections
3. Identify a sustainable business niche after conducting market research and create an origin story
4. Present business concept and receive feedback
5. Conduct and evaluate industry research and marketing research

About the Instructors:

Roxanne Quimby

Roxanne Quimby was born in Cambridge Massachusetts in 1950. Growing up in the northeast, she moved to San Francisco CA to attend San Francisco Art Institute and graduated with a BFA in 1973.

Radicalized by the social upheaval of the late sixties, Roxanne joined the “back to the land movement”, described by Helen and Scott Nearing and others, and moved to Maine to lead a self-sufficient lifestyle removed from mainstream America. Without the amenities of electricity and running water, living in a hand-built cabin in a forest setting, Roxanne learned many simple but immutable lessons Mother Nature has to offer.

Those lessons served Roxanne well as shaped her vision of simply packaged, hand made personal care products created from the fruits of the earth, many of which she grew in her garden and wildcrafted in the woods around her. Those products came to be known as Burt’s Bees, a fast-growing nationally recognized brand in the HBA sector (health and beauty aids).

Roxanne retired as CEO of Burt’s Bees in 2004 and has been an active environmentalist, part-time farmer, and aspiring pastry chef during these last 15 years. She looks forward to sharing her story with students, entrepreneurs and environmental activists from all walks of life.

Sarah Lozanova

Sarah Lozanova has worked as a consultant, helping corporations become more sustainable by making sourcing improvements, energy efficiency upgrades, and waste reduction initiatives. Her experience in renewable energy includes work with small-scale solar energy installations and utility-scale wind farms. Sarah has been an environmental journalist and copywriter for over a decade, and her writing appears in Mother Earth Living, Green Builder, Solar Today, Home Power, Windpower Engineering, and Green Business Quarterly. Currently, Sarah is writing a book entitled, “The Humane Home: 50 Ideas for Living with Nature” for Princeton Architectural Press. Sarah has been an adjunct professor for Unity College since 2016, teaching environmental business courses.

She holds an MBA in sustainable management from the Presidio Graduate School and a BA in environmental studies from the University of Oregon. Sarah lives at Belfast Cohousing & Ecovillage in midcoast Maine.