February 20, 2011

Downward or Upward spiral?


Many of our classes and its students participate in the YEN (Young Enterprise) project, which involves them in creating, maintaining and liquidating a student company, offering a product or service at a reasonable price to achieve a profit.

One very important thing I’ve noticed and experienced is that these YEN projects are incredibly sensitive to teamwork, meaning, one person is able to disrupt the group’s motivation en enthusiasm, even if there’s a whole crew to take over his or her work


Perhaps the tips written below help you to avoid such problems and increase a group’s or individual’s enthusiasm and performance, during the first and/or second semester.


I myself divide the YEN period in three; 1) Start (Establishing) 2) Mid-way (Maintaining) 3) Dismantle (Liquidating).

Reading further will show you how to prioritize activities in the first phase to work and cooperate in harmony!


As real businesses work, you and your ‘colleagues’ wish to fill every department with people who are capable of executing their work correctly, therefore, as soon as you start dividing the job descriptions make sure you use the right people in the right department, for example:

Finance: Punctual (neatly) and numbers oriented

Sales: Charismatic and smooth talkers

HR: People friendly and courage (know how to address people, whether it’s positive or negative).


Next, decide on which product or service you’re going to offer. To find a product or service is probably the most important decision you’ll make, since it determines your company’s future and profitability. When you’re brainstorming for a product, don’t feel ashamed to be a bit greedy; it’s all about honest profit!!


Original, (very) cheap, certainty & socially responsible, these are the key properties your product should have. Finally, it is very important every member of the company agrees on the product so everyone feels confidant selling their product.


Not surprising, the first phase determines how people will act during the rest of the period, so make sure, whether you’re the CEO or not,

- To look at each other as one

- Fully commit yourself to cooperate with one another

- Change your attitude, from student to businessman/woman

- Be corporate, making a profit is your main objective!

- Finally, make decisions with full confidence!!! You don’t want to regret decisions made which will influence the whole project.

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