Earlier in the term Year 5 from Albert Bradbeer and Fairway Primary Schools from Longbridge Birmingham took part in a an intense enterprise challenge; completing our Trash to Treasure module and two enterprise challenge days in the space of just one week! Finalists certainly earned their places. Following a market place-style exhibition, three teams out of fourteen were picked by parents and carers based on the quality and creativity behind their toys and their salesmanship in presenting these to visitors. The final would be an organisation skills master-class held at Bromford Group’s offices in Friars Gate.

Students accompanied by Head Teacher Chris O’Malley arrived bang on time and settled down for an introduction to the work of the leading Social Housing Provider, relating this to their own experiences of living in the South Birmingham area. With introductions out the way and Bromford volunteers ready to support their teams it was time to get competitive, firstly with a snappy round of Zip Zap Boing and then with main challenge of the day: to set up a working greetings cards company from scratch.

The first obstacle to overcome was budgeting; each team had only 60 Enabling Enterprise Dollars to begin with and needed to invest this in the right resources. With expensive tools such as scissors and glue on offer as well as raw materials ranging from the cheap plain paper to the deluxe coloured card, 60 Dollars did not go a long way and teams needed to make strategic decisions on how to make the most of their money.

As soon as teams bought their initial resources it was a race against the clock with only one hour on the make-sell-reinvest circuit. Having delegated roles and thought carefully about how to make production efficient, students unleashed their creative powers. To sell their cards students needed to make sure each one met the criteria and then use their negotiation skills to convince the EE shop that it was worth their asking price. As the first sales started to come through, the pace picked up even more with the sight of EE Dollars changing hands spurring the teams on. The final minutes before production stopped were buzz of activity and excitement.

It was now time to break for a delicious lunch and start thinking about how teams would present their work to the judges. High quality cards and profits were not going to be enough and each team needed to review their finances and experience of the challenge carefully to come up with a winning pitch. Volunteers made sure each team had rehearsed and practiced their lines to perfection and as preparation time run out it was time for the volunteers to put on their judging hats.
Teams came in bursting with confidence and spoke clearly and passionately about their work, showing off their most expensive cards and being honest about the challenges they faced. This made things very difficult for the judges and following a long deliberation, it was decided that each team had excelled at a different area. Team Albert Way had shown a great team spirit, Busy Business excelled in creativity and card design while the mantle of best presenters would go to the Shining Eagles. Well done to you guys!!! Huge thanks go to Bromford volunteers Elaine, James and Jayne for giving up their time on the day and making this such a great day for the students.

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