“I can’t believe I was having a joke with the CEO of CarFinance”
… That’s just one of the quotes to come out of the incredible sessions held this week!
Let us start at the beginning, what is a ‘Business Shower’ we hear you ask?
After spending weeks with our Careers and Enterprise team developing their own business plans, products and side hustles, young people are invited to the Dragon’s Den style event where they get to present their business idea to a panel of volunteers from a range of sectors.
With a start-up fund of £200 up for grabs and a mindset of ‘its not just what you know, but who you know’ each business got to spend 1-hour with the Dragons. There was a range of new ventures being pitched to the dragons across the two nights from oversized t-shirts to soaps and bath bombs and jewellery to portraits.
Amelia McCallum, Owner and Founder of SoundStrum – a venture taking QR scanning to a whole new level by vinyl printing spotify codes to different products that can be linked to personalised playlist said:
“I was so panicked at first, I had never done anything like it. There had been a few practice runs before the day itself but my school year had been told to isolate so the day of the shower was the first day I could leave my house. I came in early though and with the full support of the MYZ staff I was feeling much more confident when I went in.”
After the initial pitch it was over to the Dragons to deliberate, challenge and support young people, ask questions, offer potential useful connections and before finally announcing the decision of how much funding would be made available to each business.
Upon leaving the boardroom, Amelia added:
“It was such a liberating experience that I am thankful for. I’m really looking forward to taking on the Dragons comments and feedback and it feels so good to have the support and belief in my product. I have been given so many opportunities in there – I can’t wait.”
Ruby Watson, owner and founder of ‘Ruby’s Diamonds’ making and selling soaps and bath bombs added
“I was very nervous but excited beforehand. When I started presenting I felt very welcomed and I really enjoyed it – it was such a valuable experience, not just for my business, but I will be able to transfer the skills I have learnt in to many other situations.”
We would like to say a huge thank you to CarFinance247 for funding this incredible project. Without them, the seed funding would not have been available and the rise in confidence we are already seeing in these young entrepreneurs and the businesses we are about to see bloom also wouldn’t have been made possible.
Special thanks also go to our Dragons; Louis Rix, Alex Hurst, Nicola McGee, Elliot Hynes, Michael Hamilton OBE, James Darlington, Chi-Chi Ekweozor, David Miller, James Weir, Rachel Lees, Tim Knappett and Jo Yarnall.
Thanks to you, these young entrepreneurs left that boardroom with tons of expert advice, mentoring support, offers of encounters with industry leaders, printing services, free business cards… literally everything they need to feel supported in the launch of their venture!
The young people that celebrated their Business Showers are part of the Hatch Talent programme, supported by The Prince’s Trust and part of the Future Workforce Fund programme. Hatch Talent is for young people aged 14-17 and invites them to explore their skills, and test and trade a business idea they might have. Over the past 4 months, they’ve attended after school workshops on social media, marketing, graphic design, presentation skills, basic bookkeeping as well as interview and CV skills to enhance their employability and enterprise.