COURSE SCHEDULE ECCB Entrepreneurship Course: 26 September February 2014

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1 COURSE SCHEDULE ECCB Entrepreneurship Course: 26 September February 2014 MODULE EXERCISES FACILITATOR Week 1 September 26 Effective Decision Making in Teams This introductory presentation will focus on effective decision making in teams. 1. Identify how to create an environment for effective team decision making 2. Identify different models for team decision making 3. Discuss how to solve problems and make decisions more effectively in discussions with other team members. 1. BUSINESS ARTICLE Effective Decision Making in Teams Week 2 October 3 Developing the Mindset of an Entrepreneur This module will focus on the qualities required to being an entrepreneur. 1. Discuss the questions that persons should ask themselves when thinking about starting a business 2. Identify the traits and characteristics of a successful entrepreneur 1. INDIVIDUAL EXERCISE - Financial Self- Assessment for Would-Be Entrepreneurs 2. CLASS DISCUSSION - Traits and Qualities of Entrepreneurs 3. INDIVIDUAL EXERCISE AND CLASS DISCUSSION - The Entrepreneur Test 4. CASE STUDY Business Profile of a Saint Lucian Company 5. INDIVIDUAL EXERCISE - Developing Your Entrepreneur Self Week 3 October 10 Identifying Feasible Business Ideas This module will examine the basic requirements for a feasible business idea. 1. Brainstorm new small business ideas and ventures 2. Engage in the processes involved in examining the 1 1. CLASS DISCUSSION Funnel vision Assessing The Feasibility of Business Ideas 2. INDIVIDUAL EXERCISE: Tapping Into Your Creative Self What Do Your See? 3. BUSINESS ARTICLE: Are Your Ideas

2 feasibility of business ideas Audacious Enough? 4. GROUP EXERCISE: Generating A Viable Business Idea Using the Six Thinking Hats Approach Weeks 4 October 17 Group Work and Meeting with Business Mentor No formal classes during week 4 Participants expected to be working in their groups to research, identify and select the business idea that would form the basis for the group s business. Each group will also meet with a business mentor for two hours during week 6 to discuss the group s selected business idea. Week 5 October 24 Creating a Business Plan This module will focus on the tools needed to create a business plan, key components, and the steps involved in implementing the plan. 1. Discuss the fundamentals of a business plan 2. Prepare sound business proposals and explore a step by step process to bring the plans to fruition. 1. GROUP DISCUSSION: The fundamentals of Creating A Business Plan 2. GROUP EXERCISE: Creating The Business Plan For Your Group s Business 3. BUSINESS ARTICLE: Business Plan Mistakes to Avoid 4. CASE STUDY Business Profile of a Grenadian Company 2

3 Week 6 October 31 Your Sales Plan - Marketing Your Small Business on a Slim Budget This module will examine how to design a sales plan that will let you know where the sales will come from, how they'll come and from whom. It will also discuss ways to talk about and sell your product to your target audience and maintain that message through cost-effective marketing efforts (grass roots marketing, networking, references, direct and s, affordable advertising). Complete practical exercises on the following topics: 1. The anatomy of an effective sales plan 2. How to delight customers 3. Effective ways to spread the word about your businesses and retain customers without spending a fortune. 4. How to prepare and deliver captivating speeches about your business and its services 5. How to write an advertisement that goes beyond just being creative but also makes the reader interested in buying the product/service 1. GROUP EXERCISE Drafting the Group s Sales plan 2. GROUP EXERCISE Can You Sell? 3. GROUP EXERCISE Defining Your Business Unique Value Proposition 4. GROUP EXERCISE Customer Service Week 7 November 7 Networking With The Right People: This module will examine how to work with stakeholders, mentors and other advisors to organise and advise you about your business. 1. Examine the benefits of developing a good relationship with your clients, collaborators and other persons key to your business success 2. Best practices in business networking 3. Discuss how to convert everyday contacts into sales 4. Discuss how to create and maintain strong business relationships 5. Discuss why you need business mentors and how to go about selecting them GROUP DISCUSSION Networking 2. GROUP EXERCISE Creating a 6 Months Business Networking Calendar 3. CASE STUDY Business Profile of an OECS Company

4 6. Examine the benefits of being a good small business citizen The art of successful giving and receiving. Week 8 November 14 Week 9 November 21 Developing and Maintaining Your Brand This module will examine how to develop an image and a personality for your small business that embodies what your business is and does. 1. Examine the tenets of developing an effective brand strategy 2. Assessing effective brand statements (conveying an engaging, unique, relevant, and consistent message to your target audience) 3. Building name recognition. 4. Business Ethics and Brand Value consumer safety, client privacy, reputation, intellectual property, social responsibility, environmental conscious. Group Work No formal classes during week 10 Participants expected to be working in their groups to develop the group s business plan. They would be directed to sample business plans on the WWW which could serve as guides. e.g GROUP DISCUSSION What is Branding? 2. CASE STUDY From Cable and Wireless to Lime 3. GROUP EXERCISE How Do You Want To Be Remembered? Week 10 November 28 Meeting With Business Mentor/Advisor Each group will meet with a business mentor for two hours during week 10 to review the group s business plan. Week 11 December 5 Understanding and Managing Your Business Finances To Keep Them Going and Growing 4 1. GROUP DISCUSSION Common Financial Problems Encountered By Businesses

5 This module will examine effective strategies in managing the financial aspects of a small business a) Records management b) Tracking key financial data Inventory Sales Cost of sales Unit costs Operating expenses Cash flow Profit Payables and receivables c) Managing cash shortfall situations d) Savings for business emergencies e) Managing debt personal and business f) Cost Volume Profit Analysis 2. CASE STUDY Caribbean Construction and The Money Round 3. INDIVIDUAL EXERCISE CVPA - Assessing the impact of price changes on profitability 1. Examine proper bookkeeping and records management for small businesses 2. Identify key systems and controls required to manage a business 3. Discuss ways to increase the cash flow of small businesses 4. Examine the concept of CVPA to inform pricing and production decisions Week 12 December 12 Financing Your Small Business: This module will examine different ways of financing small businesses and how to avoid common mistakes like securing the wrong type of financing, miscalculating the amount required, or underestimating the cost of borrowing money 1. Identify the various costs associated with start-up businesses 1. GROUP EXERCISE Reviewing Your Estimated Business Start Up and Operational Costs for the first 6 months 2. GROUP DEBATE Bringing other persons into your business as financial partners is a sure way to business conflict and ultimately business failure. You are better off securing a loan. 3. CASE STUDY Identifying The Right Type Of 5

6 Week 13 January 9 2. Discuss the pros and cons associated with the various forms of equity and debt financing 3. Discuss the pitfalls of securing the wrong type of financing, inadequate financing and ill-timed financing. 4. Examine the various costs associated with small business loans 5. Examine local financial programmes that support small businesses (training, small business advisory services, grants) Small Business Loans 101 Lending Institutions and Small Business Loans This module will examine what lenders really need to grant small business loans and how to avoid loan rejection because of the following: a) Incomplete proposal b) Inappropriate management c) Unfavorable Cs of Credit 1. Discuss how to prepare a well-organized loan proposal and presentation. 2. Identify the seven questions in your banker s mind that loan applicants should answer. 3. Examine the benefits of developing a good relationship with your loans officer. Financing 4. CLASS DISCUSSION ON THE BUSINESS ARTICLE Ten Small Business Loan Tips 1. GROUP EXERCISE Who Gets the Loan? 2. CLASS DISCUSSION -Components of A Loan Application Week 14 January 16 Understanding Loan Documents and Loan Costs: This module will unravel the mystery of small business loan documents so you can understand i) The meaning of the documents ii) The importance and value of these documents 6 1. BUSINESS ARTICLE Understanding Loan Agreements 2. CLASS EXERCISE Dissecting the Loan Agreement

7 iii) the various loan costs (rates, fees, down payments, penalties, and other terms and conditions) that prospective borrowers need to examine and compare before selecting a lending agency. 3. GROUP EXERCISE Loan Covenants Week 15 January23 1. Discuss the importance of reviewing and negotiating loan documents and communicating your goals to lenders, attorneys, and other key participants in the deal. 2. Discuss how to avoid legal pitfalls associated with small business loans. 3. Examine the anatomy of a business loan agreement Group Work No formal classes during weeks 16. Participants are expected to meet with an assigned banker during week 16 in a simulation of a business loan interview. Participants will submit their business proposal and go through the procedures as if they were applying for a small business loan to fund their business proposal. If the plan is rejected the group will be provided with the rationale. Week 16 January 30 The objective of this exercise is to give participants the experience of applying for a business loan. Creating the Right Business Structure This module will examine the pros and cons of each business structure 1. Discuss the pros and cons associated with the following business structures a. Sole Proprietorship b. Partnership c. Limited Liability Co HOLIDAY BREAK 1. GROUP DISCUSSION: Pros and Cons of Business Structures 2. CLASS DISCUSSION: Dissecting A Sample Partnership Agreement 3. CASE STUDIES a. Agreeing to Disagree b. Three is Company or Is It 7

8 Week 17 February 6 2. Discuss prevailing registration and legal issues in the respective OECS countries associated with each business structure Creating a Winning Team This module will examine effective human resource strategies for small businesses 1. Discuss when it is the right time to hire staff - When being the lone ranger is no longer effective in managing your growing business. 2. Identifying the best culture for your business 3. How to employ the right people finding persons who share the company s values 4. How to keep employees motivated Managing, coaching and developing staff Rewarding employees Staff retreats 5. How to enhance the team with professional management Executive Board Professional consultations in the areas of Finance, Marketing, IT etc 4. CLASS DISCUSSION Business Licensing and Registration Process 1. GROUP EXERCISE AND CLASS DISCUSSION Team work Week 18 February 13 Risk Management and Facing Adversity This module will examine small business risk 1. CASE STUDIES Developing Your Risk Register 8

9 management strategies and how to make strategic choices in slow growth, imperfect, uncertain or fast changing competitive environments. 1. Identify general and operational business risks 2. Examine various risk management strategies suited to the needs of small businesses 3. Identify strategies that businesses can use to manage through the rough times 4. Learning from business failure 2. GROUP EXERCISE Dealing with Adversity: Questions To Prepare You and Your Business for the Tough Times 3. GROUP EXERCISE Adversity Checklist Week 19 February 14 Preparing Your Business For Growth This module will examine effective growth strategies, controls and systems to grow your small business 1. Identify the various growth stages of companies 2. Discuss how to grow your business and the internal changes (related to both the owner and the business including its organizational structure) required to position the business for growth. 3. Examine various types of growth strategies and understand how to map out a strategy to move the business to the next level from start up to small to mid size business 4. Discuss how to develop a growth plan - (a) vision (b) strategy (b) tactics (c) business activities and resources - human and capital, technology, information, processes, systems and controls to guide your business to its highest level of profitability. 1. GROUP DISCUSSION Developing a Growth Strategy for One s Small Business- Issues, Considerations and Strategies. 2. GROUP VISIONING EXERCISE Taking The Business To The Next Level - Developing A Vision Beyond The Day To Day Running of a Start-Up 3. GROUP EXERCISE Drafting A Business Growth Plan 9

10 Week 20 February 20 Course Wrap Up Meeting with participants, mentors, facilitators and course coordinators to discuss the course and to glean from the participants their views as to whether the course has positioned them to move to the next step i.,e. launch their business or improve an existing business and if not what more is required. 10

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