The School Enterprise Challenge 2015 has already been launched! We feel this is the right moment to re-visit the concepts of People, Profit, Planet so that all schools and participants become inspired while they are creating their business ideas. Schools should keep in mind how important it is to try and address all of these issues, not only because you can get closer to becoming a winner at each stage of the competition, but also because you can win individual prizes for each category!
We’d like to give you some examples from schools across the globe that took part in the competition. Try to answer the following questions with your team once you start planning your business set-up.
People: How can we make our business a ‘social’ enterprise?
The T-shirt printing enterprise of the Veda Vyasa DAV Public School in India created a platform for children with special needs to become part of the business. Students who are usually separated came together to set up a successful business that makes unique prints from students’ Madhubani paintings.The profits of the business are re- invested into the installation of green technologies and school trips to organic farms.
Profit: How can we make our business as profitable as possible?
Planning well in advance, finding an idea with a strong competitive advantage in your area of operation, and discovering or using your resources economically are all ways of increasing your chances for bigger profits! The Bishop Rogan College in Cameroon ran a successful poultry enterprise which raised, and sold 600 broilers, supplying the local area with an important and now affordable source of protein. Thanks to their creative strategy, BIROCOL Poultry Enterprise doubled the profit they had originally predicted!
Planet: How can we make our business a ‘green’ enterprise?
Check out the example of Birmingham Covington School in the USA: their “Zambia incorporated” jewellery-making business has been environmentally friendly and has considered sustainability since the very beginning. First, the start-up capital came from the recycling of aluminium cans, chip packets and juice pouches. Second, the business was about recycling highly polluting plastic cards and transforming them into beautiful jewellery!
Is there a chance our business can meet all the criteria of People, Profit and Planet at the same time?
Yes, there is! Since the beginning of the School Enterprise Challenge there have been many successful examples of businesses that are profitable, socially and environmentally responsible at the same time. Most of our top prize winners in the past have considered all three of these criteria, even if they have focused more on one of them.
One of these examples is the SAI International School in India and their recycled eco-friendly reusable bags, made from T-shirts which came from donations.
The school increased their estimated profit after they simply increased the price of their product to cover for lower production rates. Their business is able to reduce the amount of plastic bags used in their community by thousands! The school used the profits for renovating the Sriharsha Memorial School for Deaf children in collaboration with their partner school in Bristol, UK, a meaningful project that made a big change in the lives of their fellow students.
Now it is your turn! You can register here for the School Enterprise Challenge 2015 and start planning your business!