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Individual Report Ross Long

Emerald Events The student enterprise module was one of great originality. It introduced me to the realism of having to apply the knowledge that I had learnt in class to the business scenarios faced in my student enterprise group. This approach had educated me more effectively because the application of work helped me to identify whether I actually obtained the skills to succeed in business as an entrepreneur or not. My visual journal is a step-by-step journey through my student enterprise experience. The module had helped me to become more familiar with my very own business personality and the way that I function in decision making. As my journal illustrates, of each day that passed, I had learnt about the characteristics I obtained, the characteristics I held which I was not familiar with and the attributes that I had developed through the experience. For example, I had always found myself to be quite conserved about my decisions, I was familiar that I made risks based on calculation, but I had learnt that I was braver than I thought. Previously, I had tended to avoid the use of my hunch to guide my decisions. Yet, it was my personal choice to go with my hunch that Emerald events would need to enter the market urgently, to gain a time advantage over any potential competitors that were developing. This had effectively resulted in a large number of people attending our first event. My initial opinion on entrepreneurship was valued quite highly, until now I always stood confident in saying that entrepreneurship was not a direction I would ever go in. Yet, on conclusion of choosing the module, I assumed it would be good to gain an insight into a direction that I had never considered; I wanted to broaden my horizons. Now that the student enterprise experience is completed, I am able to clarify that entrepreneurship is a certain direction in life. I have learnt that entrepreneurs are extremely fascinating people and live through some extraordinary experiences. Entrepreneurs make change; they are very inspirational and influential from the success that entrepreneurs breed. I found that imitating their entrepreneurial success brings enjoyment, which is illustrated in my journal as one of the characteristics I had developed. I relished the real life challenge that had existed in student enterprise, as I had mentioned before, it was an original variation to any other classes I had partaken in. As well as the module teaching myself about entrepreneurialism, it had also taught me about the self, which is extremely important because it helped me to identify the attributes I have which aid in my decision making approach. My visual journal contains a range of verbs and adjectives which are all optimistic; this is a reflection of my student enterprise - the experience was a positive one which I enjoyed. The application of real business scenarios was a major pleasure, it was useful in applying the knowledge we were taught in class when involved with our business. This experience completely transformed my attitude. The application process in reality is daunting because errors in the business world can result in missed opportunities -you only get one chance. As a result, my visual journal reflects the importance to be organised, calm and well disciplined. Although this enterprise was amusing, it had a great deal of seriousness applied, which in effect required me to act smart.

One minor criticism which I found in student enterprise was the fact that we had to work with people we were unfamiliar with; we were sectioned into groups before we really got to form a relationship with unacquainted piers. Although this lead to some great friendships being formed within the group and with other groups that I am thankful for, there were also unfortunate experiences with other people who did not obtain the same drive, determination and need for success that others in the group had. However, on reflection, it has taught me a valuable lesson in business - you will rarely find yourself in an initial ideal situation. As a result, I had learnt that I was more adaptive than I had originally thought. Because I had the positivity and persistence to succeed and an attachment to the enterprise, I had to learn to deal with these inconveniences and adapt in order to move forward as a person and as an enterprise.

As initially mentioned, the skills that I had developed over the student enterprise experience are conveyed in my visual journal as each day passed. The more experience I gained, the more I learnt about myself. The more time passed, the more competent I became as an entrepreneur, this is reflected by the final part of the journey - achieving self- realisation, illustrating I discovered the person I was and self-satisfaction, that I was happy with the person I was. I found that as my skills developed over time, I was becoming more influential on my group. I was able to motivate others; I took a major part in leading the business forward by organising others. I believe that entrepreneurs obtain valuable skills in leading and motivating, as they have to do this daily. I was similar; I believed in the product, I had passion. In my opinion I believe that the overall success of the enterprise was a triumph as we had made it to the end making a profit. Yet the success of the enterprise can not only be made in monetary terms, the success can only be made by achieving the goals of the enterprise. Our major goal was to create friendships between our class mates through creating social opportunities outside of lectures. On reflection, we had achieved this. We had formulated many friendships. This is conveyed in my visual journal from the use of Payday at the end of the period. This illustrates that we had made a profit due to the success we had made from achieving our objectives. Overall, the student enterprise experience had been an influential part of my time so far at the University of Reading. I have learnt more about the personality required to be an entrepreneur. There are an essential set of characteristics which I believe I have been fortunate to be born with. But I have also learnt a set of skills along the way which has helped complement my entrepreneurial instinct. The experience has changed my self-perception from previously believing that I would never take an entrepreneurial route in life, to knowing that entrepreneurship is the direction I would like to take.