Enterprise Week 2012

The 2012 Enterprise Week took place at TIGHS between 02 and 06 July, and a total of ten teams took part.

Each team was allowed a maximum of ten participants and had to set up their own business and implement business plans using an initial investment of £50 given by the school. At the end of the week, any profits made on top of this would be donated to charity, with the initial £50 returned to the school.

Every team had to select a project manager and assign various business roles to each team member, such as financier, market researcher, marketing and quality control. The process of choosing which team members had to undertake which tasks was conducted through the writing of job descriptions and then interviewing each other to find those most suitable.

Once all roles had been assigned, working in their teams, the students had to run their own company for a week, aiming to make a profit by implementing their business plans and making and selling products that they had added value to. Students were also required to apply for a bank loan and negotiate contracts with discerning buyers.

In order to inspire the students and generate ideas for their businesses, a number of local business leaders and experts came to the school – including award-winning entrepreneur from the BBC’s 2012 Apprentice programme, Azhar Siddique – to speak to the girls and run seminars and workshops on topics such as human resources, marketing, market research and finance.

One other daunting prospect each team had to face was the TIGHS Tigers, consisting of Mrs Seema Bux and Mrs Nazma Master acting as businesswomen with an extra £100 to invest. Each team was required to pitch their business plan and state why they deserved extra investment, with three minutes allowed for each pitch and two minutes for questions and answers.

At the end of the week, Year 7, 8, 9 and sixth form students, as well as parents and teachers, were invited to buy the teams’ products, before each team had to present a company report and then answer questions in front of guest judges.

“We were most impressed with the discipline and creativity shown by the students. May we thank you for selecting Malawi Relief as your charity and we can assure that your donation will make a significant impact on very many lives.”

Mohammed Mangera, Malawi Relief Fund UK

 

The week in focus

Monday 02 July

Guest speakers visited the school to talk to the students and run a series of seminar and workshops. These included:

A talk by Mohammed Mangera, Malawi Relief Fund UK

A talk by Molana Munir, Business and Enterprise in Islam

An inspirational guest presentation by Mubarak Chati, One Event Media company and former Chair of the Asian Business Federation

A talk by Zee Mitha, owner of Allied Property Management Services

The teams also assigned their roles by writing job descriptions and conducting job interviews, as well as undertook market research about their businesses.

Tuesday 03 July

Guest speakers visited the school to talk to the students and run a series of seminar and workshops. These included:

A talk, including tips about marketing and pitching, by Azhar Siddique, award-winning entrepreneur and star of the BBC’s 2012 Apprentice show

A talk by businessman and school governor Mohammed Isap about finance

A talk by Hazra Patel (BDS), local dentist and Hafiza, about customer relations

The teams also undertook product research, were given initial shopping time to buy items for their products, had to write SWOT analyses and then had to face the TIGHS Tigers, pitching ideas to earn extra investment.

Wednesday 04 July

The whole of Wednesday was given over to production, so that the girls could concentrate on developing their products and ideas, and adding value to increase profitability.

Thursday 05 July

The market fair took place between 10.45am and 1.15pm, giving Year 7, 8, 9 and sixth form students, as well as parents and teachers, a chance to buy the teams’ products.

In total, trading at the two-hour market fair raised a profit of £2,040.73 for this year’s chosen charity, Malawi Relief Fund UK.

“What the students have set up is really good and it’s a great opportunity to showcase their hidden talents. I wish them all the success and hope they raise a lot of money for the charity.” Mrs Bandukiya, a parent who visited the fair.

Friday 06 July

On the final day of the week, each team had to present a six-minute company report containing the aims and objectives of Enterprise Week, what they had learnt, a SWOT analysis of their product, their market research and finance report.

They then had to answer questions in front of guest judges, who included Mr Iqbal Patel (Master), School governor; Mrs Mumtaz Musa, Member of the Parent Shura and PA to Jack Straw MP; Dr Night Awan OBE, entrepreneur; and Ilyah Munshi, chief executive of Enterprise for All.

Monday 09 July

The judges chose the In-Sync team as the overall winners of Enterprise Week 2012, who focused on creating Arabic-themed products as their business idea.

The team were invited to visit the offices of KPMG in Manchester to meet the company’s chief executive, take part in workshops, present their company report to staff and show their products.

Finally, the day ended with the students rewarded for their success with a fine dining experience at a restaurant in Manchester city centre.

To read more about the teams and their business ideas, click here.

 

What the experts had to say

“We were pleased to be a part of Tauheedul’s Enterprise Week. Promoting enterprise to the youth is pivotal to growth of the economy, as they will be entrepreneurs of tomorrow.” Mubarak Chati, Managing Director, One Events Media

“Having had an affiliation with TIGHS since its inception it was quite a privilege to be asked to contribute to this year’s Enterprise Week. I could see immediately that it was a well-organised event and there were some great keynote speakers who freely offered their valuable knowledge and experiences, which you could tell gave the students such inspiration.

The students were all very mature, creative, confident and highly entrepreneurial in their thinking, behaviour and how they presented their business ideas. Sometimes I forgot that they were only Year 10 students due to the fact that some of the business ideas were totally credible and could be used to raise further funds, possibly during Ramadan when people’s hearts are usually ‘softer’.

An event like this is really important because, in the current economic climate where there is a need to think more creatively and innovatively due to all the pressures that life and work bring, young people need to be enterprising, take calculated risks and generally have a ‘can-do’ attitude. Business and the disciplines of business help to develop those traits and, while not all of the students will go on to run a business, learning the teachings of business will certainly help them in both their academic and daily lives.

Other things that young people can do to ensure success in the future are to always look out for opportunities, to thoroughly research any ideas they may have and to learn from any mistakes they make. They should also always network and speak to as many like-minded people as possible, be persistent and show perseverance and, above all, remain honest, ethical and honorable in their dealings.” Iqbal Patel (Master), member of the 2012 judging panel

“I was very pleased and honoured to be asked to take part in the Tauheedul Enterprise Week event. As part of my role I introduced the concept of finance within a corporate environment to the whole group and then ran a one-hour workshop with a smaller group made up of the students who had taken on the financial responsibility within their business ventures. I have to say that I was very impressed with the enthusiasm and confidence with which all of the students approached their tasks.

The whole idea behind Enterprise Week is really good because, basically, business is the world of work. Regardless of what type of organisation you work in, there are elements of business practiced in all and so it is vital that our young people learn those skills. Although I was not privy to the actual business ideas the girls came up with you could see that they were all extremely motivated and eager to succeed.

For any young person looking to go into business my advice is to understand properly what it is you are seeking to do, to know your own talents and what it is that you enjoy. Research and then research further until you have a proper and precise idea of where you are heading.” Mohammed Isap, MPG, Manchester

 

Follow-up activities

All of the students that participated in 2012 Enterprise Week will be taking part in a day of learning regarding careers and healthy living.

As part of their careers provision in school, they will spend time writing their personal statements and CVs, and will be encouraged to write about the skills and experience they gained from this exciting event.

A theme for 2013 Enterprise Week will be decided shortly.

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