Enjoyment Factor: 9/10
Teamwork Rating: 10/10
Leadership Opportunity: 10/10
Age Range: 15+
Activity Time: 1 Week
Set Up Time: 30 minutes
Equipment Requirements: High
Entrepreneurship 101 is absolutely one of my favourite activities to run with older kids as it produces such a wide range of benefits and lessons for the participants. The activity is played out over the course of a week and will see the groups involve learn about product design, money management and budgeting, as well as presentation skills. The skills learned in this activity translate brilliantly into real world scenarios and as such this activity creates excellent discussion points with parents after camp is over.
what you need to know
Entrepreneurship 101 runs over the course a week for two hour slots each day. The premise is that the groups must create a product idea, develop it into a sellable good and then generate sales at a local market. The groups will work through five different stages throughout the activity with each one requiring different skills as well as presenting different challenges.
Source Note: This activity runs really well if you have access to a local farmers market or similar kind of market. It allows the groups to engage with the public in a way that means their successes will be truly highlighted. If you do not have access to a market a good alternative is to create one on closing day where the groups have the opportunity to sell their products to parents.
running the activity
The groups are briefed on their task and given information on the timetable of the activity for the coming week. The groups must now decide what kind of product they wish to manufacture. The scope of the products that can be created can be filtered by the resources you make available to the groups but examples include: Baked Goods, Souvenirs, Craft Products etc. While designing their products the groups must consider the practicalities of the different ideas: costs, manufacturing time, demand for such a good.
Once a product has been decided upon by the groups they must move on to considering the practicalities of manufacture. The steps that must be completed in day two are assigning roles within the team including but not limited to:
- Budgetary Responsibility
- Design Team
- Quality Control
- Sales Presenter
- Project Manager
After the teams have created an outline of what their product is, how it will be manufactured and how it will be sold they must prepare to gain investment in it. As part of the activity they teams can have up to $100 made available to them as a loan (this figure can be moved up and down). In order to gain that investment, however, they must prepare a presentation to the group leader outlining the amount of money they need, how it will be spent and how it will be recouped in sales.
With an idea decided upon and money available to spend on their product after a successful pitch the teams must now gather the supplies they need. This stage involves a trip into a local store for the groups to buy the materials they need. It is possible for the teams to submit their supply requirements and for the group leader to have the supplies available for the next day but managing the budget when their are different options and opportunities presented to them is a good learning stage.
Once supplies are ready the teams must begin product manufacture.
The groups must complete the manufacture of their goods and create a plan as to how they are going to generate sales. Teams can use this day to think about decorations for their stall and how they are going to generate interest in their product.
Market Day. The groups must now sell their products with the aim of creating as much revenue as possible. After the groups surpass the investment amount which can be repaid to camp any remaining profit can be put towards a special event for the groups.
Entrepreneurship 101 creates a wide range of learning outcomes, particularly as it is dealing with real money, real product creation and real sales. The feeling of achievement at the end if enhanced all the further as the teams have not been pretending to have success. Each of the stages involve a tangible process that translates directly to real world skills that are hugely beneficial in a young adult. On completing this activity the teams will have:
- Learned that being an entrepreneur is not something that other people do but something available to them.
- Managed a budget with the aim of minimising costs and maximising revenue.
- Worked through a creative process as part of a team.
- Been given the opportunity to practice the skills that go into a successful sales pitch.
Due to the high level of responsibility involved in this activity it works very well as part of a leadership development program. It is a brilliant activity for generating talking points with parents as well as being a clear catalyst for the participants of learning important life skills. All timings of the activity are a guide and can be manipulated according to your desired outcomes.