Janet Kraus is a Senior Lecturer in the Entrepreneurial Management Unit. She will be teaching Building Businesses in the Context of a Life (BBCL) and Founders' Dilemmas' both in the Winter Term of the 2012/2013 academic year. She is also Co-chair of the Executive Education Program, A New Path designed for women in transition. She is also faculty member in Executive Education Program, CrossRoads. She also runs two Women's Entrepreneurial Forums in the I-Lab.
A two time business founder, Janet has been involved in every stage of the entrepreneurial process including idea generation, product development, building teams, fund raising, identification of key strategic partners, business development and direct sales, operational scaling, crisis and recovery, buying and exiting companies.
After graduating from Yale in 1988, Janet started her career in consulting in the technology practice at Temple Barker and Sloane. In 1991 Janet spent a year in Brazil working for a non-profit educational organization before returning to attend the Stanford Graduate School of Business from 1992 to 1994. After matriculation she directed the social marketing and fair trade initiatives at The Body Shop.
In 1997, Janet co-founded Circles, a concierge and events company which grew to be a $60 million company, with nearly 1000 consultants in both Boston, MA and Burlington, Ontario. Circles was sold to Sodexo in October 2007, and has since expanded its base of operations into five countries.
In November 2007, Janet left Circles to lead Spire, a company designed to create social resource sharing platforms specializing in travel and leisure. Janet sold Spire to Perfect Escapes in 2010.
Janet is a recipient of Boston's 40 under 40 and was a finalist of Ernst and Young's Entrepreneur of the Year. Circles was awarded the Small Business of the Year Award by the Chamber of Commerce.
She and the companies she has lead have been profiled in the Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Fortune Small Business, the New York Times. She has been a speaker at conferences and educational institutions on the subjects of entrepreneurship, innovation, leadership, building teams, vision, values leadership, happiness and life planning
An entrepreneur's advocate, Janet sits on the board of directors of five start-up companies and the Board of TABL (The Alliance for Business Leadership). She currently lives outside of Boston with her husband and twin 5 year old daughters.