This is an excellent case study of two entrepreneurs who saw opportunity when others did not.

Getting Started

Appropriate Subject Area(s)

Market research, marketing, target market, entrepreneurship, opportunity identification

Key Questions to Explore:

  • What comes first — the idea or the opportunity?
Study and Discussion Activity

Introduction to lesson and task:

Students can apply a case study method to this article.

Action (lesson plan and task):

  • Distribute the article for reading.
  • In groups of four, have students respond to the following questions:
    • What opportunity did Mallorie Brodie and Lauren Lake identify?
    • What innovation have the pair developed?
    • What are some of the benefits and drawbacks to the software they launched?
    • What came first, the opportunity or the idea? Explain.
    • What makes something an opportunity?
    • Why do some see the opportunity when others do not?
  • Combine groups and have them discuss their responses.

Consolidation of Learning:

  • In the same groups of four, ask students to apply de Bono’s Six Thinking Hats to analyze Bridgit and the opportunities on the horizon.  Reminder: Black Hat — negative Ideas; Yellow Hat — positive ideas; White Hat — facts only; Green Hat — creative ideas; Blue Hat — control; Red Hat — intuitive.
Success and Additional Learning

Success Criteria:

  • Students have ideas on how to identify an opportunity.

Confirming Activity:

  • Put this quote on the board: “Those who say it cannot be done, should get out of the way of those who are doing it.” Often attributed to George Bernard Shaw.  How does this quote apply to this case?  Research other entrepreneurs who moved forward when others said it could not be done.  Fred Smith, founder of FedEx, had similar advice he did not follow.