The School:

Southern Road Primary School, based in Newham, are in their sixth year of working with Enabling Enterprise. Back in school, students have been busy developing their Enterprise Skills through a mixture of Lesson-Time projects during their buzzing Enterprise Weeks, as well as Challenge Days they’ve successfully completed in the past. The latest Challenge Day saw students taking on the roles of Crime Scene Investigators closing in on the ‘Sugar Snatcher’.

Today’s trip was a fantastic opportunity for students from Year 5 to put their Staying Positive and Problem Solving skills to the test with the support from professional business volunteers in the world of finance.

The Business: Societe Generale

Societe Generale is a French multinational banking and financial services company head-quartered in Paris. They are one of the largest European financial services groups. As a universal bank, Societe Generale not only offers Retail Banking in France but also International Banking, Financial Services and Corporate and Investment Banking, worldwide.

Our teams today were very lucky to be joined by Lorna, Ness, Marina, Louise and Ollie, who brought their expertise from a range of sectors within Societe Generale, including Trading Support, Client Services and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

The Challenge: Lend-a-Hand

The day started off with the students interviewing the volunteers to find out about their different roles, responsibilities and how they use the Enterprise Skills in their jobs. Students then went on a tour of the premises, which allowed the teams to see the great variety of jobs available in the world of finance; as well as learning more about the working environment and how Societe Generale prioritise employee welfare. Problem Solving and Sharing Ideas were very much in evidence in all of these roles, particularly on the trading floors, and the teams were picking up some top tips from the professionals to take back to the boardroom for their tasks. The students also got to see the truly global nature of Societe Generale as they witnessed employees making phone and video calls to clients and colleagues around the world and in a variety of different languages.

Taking on the role of Financial Advisors, students were introduced to the concept of budgeting; as well as managing income and expenditure effectively to avoid going into debt. They were then given the task of advising their clients, the O’Mooney family, to make sensible financial decisions for a range of different life events. Teams had to put their Problem Solving skills in action to work out the pros and cons of different suggestions and, taking the priorities and needs of the client on board, then worked together to suggest the best possible course of action for their client. The teams’ Staying Positive skills were tested when they realised that decisions they had made earlier on were having an impact on the advice they were giving their clients later in the day!

The day culminated in teams holding a budgeting meeting with the client to share their top tips and financial advice. Volunteers watched the meeting and used their expertise to judge which team had used their Problem Solving and Staying Positive skills to make the most sensible decisions along the way.

What they said:

  • “I want to work here one day!” – Student, Southern Road Primary
  • “We have seen a few new leaders emerging today. The students have loved the experience of entering a workplace and interacting with the volunteers, and they have encouraged the teams to think in more depth about money and the consequences of their decisions.” – Teacher, Southern Road Primary
  • “I’ve been really impressed by their creativity and how they have taken on new ideas and used these to help that creativity. Problem-solving is so important to me in my role and they have seen for themselves today just how they can learn this skill through real-life learning.” – Volunteer, Societe Generale
  • “I’ve learnt that it’s important to budget. If you want to have expensive things, like a nice car, you need to save your money and plan for the future.” – Student, Southern Road Primary

Thanks to everyone for such a great trip day!

Enabling Enterprise are working in partnership with schools and businesses to support students to build enterprise skills and aspirations. Find out more by contacting us or visiting

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