I teach an undergrad business law course at UTEP's College of business. The focus of the course are the legal issues faced by startups, but I end up teaching a lot about starting a company as the business context is relevant to the legal issues. Most of my lectures comes from personal experience, but I quote and refer to several books. For any past or future students, here's the list of all the books I use in Business Law 4391.
One of the most common questions I get as a teacher and mentor is around being exceptional. People want to be special or they want to be interesting and they don’t know how to get there. There are infinite self-help books on the subject of working hard and tons of new marketing schemes on developing a "personal brand," but my personal take is that they start with the wrong assumption that setting yourself apart begins with doing something special. I think the simplest first step to being exceptional is in not doing things.
When I graduated from law school, I wanted to start making contributions to my college. I didn’t have any money, but I’d just spent a few years in Silicon Valley learning about startups. So I contacted some people at my college to see if there was any way that I could share some of my experiences with current students. One thing led to another, and I ended up with an offer to teach a business law course.
Yes, law school classmates, I know it is unbelievable given my class attendance, but I am an adjunct professor.
I was excited to start. I thought it would be fun to talk about all these interesting things I knew. I’d waltz into the room and inspire the class with my words and intellect. But instead, I seriously got my ass kicked. Not by the students, but by the sheer amount of work that goes into teaching. It’s a huge investment. During my courses, I lecture five hours a day for two weeks, spend all afternoon preparing for the next class, and use the night to catch up on my day job. I lose weight, fall behind on work, and end up exhausted. Despite the amount of work and the challenges teaching creates for me, I’ve likely benefitted more from the experience than anyone else.