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Published by: Harvard Business Publishing
Originally published in: 2021
Version: 1 October 2021
Length: 9 pages
Data source: Published sources

Abstract

When Desiree ('Des') Stolar's wool sweater shrank two sizes, the Harvard Business School student worked with classmates to develop a solution that both fixed her problem and launched Unshrinkit, a successful consumer goods company with a widely-available product for reversing wool shrinkage. Stolar's path to success would eventually include an appearance on the hit television show Shark Tank and an investment offer from billionaire Mark Cuban. But along the way she encountered several challenging negotiations - over equity allocations, supplier and manufacturer terms, with skeptical potential investors, business and legal deal teams, etc - that threatened to derail her efforts. Unshrinkit (A) tells the story of Unshrinkit while stopping at six crucial 'negotiation challenges' that call for students to articulate how they would approach each challenge. Unshrinkit (B) reveals the strategies, tactics, and mindsets by which Stolar approached these challenges. This provides instructors and students with opportunities to compare their proposed advice with what Stolar actually did - as well as to draw broader lessons from her saga.

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Abstract

When Desiree ('Des') Stolar's wool sweater shrank two sizes, the Harvard Business School student worked with classmates to develop a solution that both fixed her problem and launched Unshrinkit, a successful consumer goods company with a widely-available product for reversing wool shrinkage. Stolar's path to success would eventually include an appearance on the hit television show Shark Tank and an investment offer from billionaire Mark Cuban. But along the way she encountered several challenging negotiations - over equity allocations, supplier and manufacturer terms, with skeptical potential investors, business and legal deal teams, etc - that threatened to derail her efforts. Unshrinkit (A) tells the story of Unshrinkit while stopping at six crucial 'negotiation challenges' that call for students to articulate how they would approach each challenge. Unshrinkit (B) reveals the strategies, tactics, and mindsets by which Stolar approached these challenges. This provides instructors and students with opportunities to compare their proposed advice with what Stolar actually did - as well as to draw broader lessons from her saga.

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