Imagine that you and your business partners inherited $100,000 from one of your distant relatives. In the will, it states that the money must go towards starting your own business. In trios (or pairs in exceptional cases), generate a couple of business ideas for a retail store across from the school. It should cater to other high-school students (or specific groups of high school students). Part of money would go towards rent, renovations, furniture, staffing, and inventory.
Part 1 – Let’s hear your idea!
Do you have a great innovative or entrepreneurial idea? Let’s hear it. Discuss with your partner(s) and answer the questions below. Each member will keep a copy of the answers.
- What kind of product would you offer? A product can either be a good or a service: a good is a physical item that you can sell while a service is a non-physical item (e.g. movie).
- What are the benefits or features of the product or service? (i.e. How does it help people? What problems does it solve?)
- What name would you call your business?
- Who are your competitors? (i.e. Who sells similar items?)
- What makes your product or service better or different from others? (Quality, price, location, etc.)
- Who is you target audience? Imagine an actual person who buys from your store. Identify the person’s gender, age and interests.
- Where will you sell your products? (Retail store, school, night market, vending machine, Internet, etc.)
- How much will it cost to create or obtain this product? How much will you sell it for? At this price, how many can you sell in a day?
- How will you promote your business? What media would you use? Internet, print, radio, etc.–be very specific.
- What are some external risks or obstacles that you might run into? How can you minimize some of these risks? Start with the greatest risks.
Part 2 – Critique and Suggestions
Read and critique at least one other group’s business idea. Make your critique constructive by offering useful feedback:
- Is their plan realistic? If not, why not?
- Did they miss anything? Did they forget to mention anything? If so, what?
- What did you like about their idea?
- What would you like clarified?
- What could they do to improve their business idea?
Part 3 – SWOT Analysis
The purpose of a SWOT analysis is to identify your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats and to evaluate the potential success of your business. Use the information above (Part 1 and 2) the complete the SWOT analysis by providing at least two points for each cell.
Part 3 – Group E-mail (Homework–very important)
- Create a new Gmail account that will be shared among your group members. The
- The username should start with the word “business8.” (with a dot) and be related to your store’s name. For example, if your store is called GamerTag, then create an e-mail called business8.GamerTag@gmail.com.
- Gmail might need to send you a text message to verify your account. If you do not have a cell phone, first ask a member from your group before asking another group.
- Remember the username and password–the teacher will not be able to retrieve it for you. Do NOT log on the account on three or more computers. You and your group members may be locked out for 24 hours or longer.
- Note that it takes 24 hours before students have full access to the account. The teacher will show a demonstration at the beginning of next class. It is important that students speak with the teacher one day before the next class if they are having trouble with sign-up at home.
This assignment will only be looked over by the teacher and will not be marked. However, your success is heavily dependent on the first two parts of this assignment as it provides a foundation and framework for future assignments. Listening and responding to your teacher and peers’ critique are just as important as the business idea itself.
The teacher also expects each group to create a Gmail account for homework. The teacher will show a demonstration at the beginning of next class. It takes 24 hours before students have full access to the account! If students have trouble at home, they need to see the teacher one day before the next class. Students who fail to prepare for this step, often fall behind immediately. Preparation is key to success.
“Failure to plan is a plan for failure.” – Winston Churchill