What we’ve learnt about Entrepreneurship – Part 2

We’ve had over a hundred Gr 9 students set up businesses since the start of the year. A term later, we’ve asked them what this workshop has taught them about entrepreneurship.

One answer was that they learnt to have a new perspective on failure.

It only took a few weeks for every small business to start facing some setbacks. Something unexpected happens and sometimes things just simply don’t go as planned.

Dealing with each setback, and problem solving the way to a new solution or business tactic, takes up most of the time spent on a new business.

For example, once a cleverly thought out advert has been placed, our young business owners expect customers to come seek them and their product out. This is rarely how things pan out.

When students aren’t getting the customers they expected, they face the choice between giving up or seeing the problem as a business failure that they need to learn from and overcome. Some businesses realise that their product is not appealing enough and choose to change it into a product that far outdoes their initial idea, ending up with a more successful business than they had initially planned for. Others realise that they need to work on their marketing skills and find new, more creative ways to get customers to pay attention to what they are offering. Some of these small businesses realise that people are interacting with their marketing, like their product or service, but are not willing to put in work and effort to actually get the product. These groups invent new ways to bring their product or service closer to their market, making it easy for customers to buy from them.

Each time the students engage with these setbacks and failures, their business skills and their business both come out stronger.

Learning to face our failures and learn from them, rather than allowing them close doors for us, is an incredible life skill to have.

Our young business owners have a brand-new understanding of what it means to fail and how to deal with setbacks in a positive way.

Rise Academy © 2016 | All Rights Reserved

Sibusiso (Breeze) Shezi

Lecturer

Breeze aka Zulu Bass King is a musician who brings years of experience in studio, on radio, and on the stage to Rise Academy.
He has had tracks played on major SA radio stations, multiple music nominations, and has performed at some of South Africa’s largest music events. He’s worked with a huge array of top artists such as Nasty C, Soweto Gospel Choir, and Ladysmith Black Mambazo, just to mention a few.

He used to dance and play rugby competitively and loves to run fitness drills with our performance students to get them ready to pull off amazing stage routines.

CHAY COOK

DIGITAL

Chay is a Public Relations practitioner who manages all of the academy’s
communications. Her role combines an enthusiasm for social media, digital
marketing, and music.
She is also on hand to help students with their marketing and PR queries by
ensuring that her door is always open, and if students are lucky there might even be
some peppermint crisp tart up for grabs since her recipe is one of the best.

CHAY COOK

DIGITAL

Chay is a Public Relations practitioner who manages all of the academy’s
communications. Her role combines an enthusiasm for social media, digital
marketing, and music.
She is also on hand to help students with their marketing and PR queries by
ensuring that her door is always open, and if students are lucky there might even be
some peppermint crisp tart up for grabs since her recipe is one of the best.

JAMES VERKERK

LECTURER


James is a DJ who got his start at the age of 16. He brings his onstage energy and
enthusiasm for music to the Rise Academy classroom where he teaches students
everything they need to know about the art of DJing. He is a skilled sound engineer
with a background in recording, producing and mixing.
James also trained as a classical pianist and is an avid surfer.

CRAIG GREEN

CO-FOUNDER

With more than two decades of experience in event organising, planning and logistics, Craig knows the ins and outs of the music world. He brings an invaluable
network of industry contacts to the Rise Academy community.
In 1998, Craig began U-PARTY, an event production and management company assisting schools to raise funds through community events and socials. He holds a BComm degree from the University of the Witwatersrand and is a self- proclaimed lego aficionado.

SUE GREEN

CO-FOUNDER & MD

Sue brings her business acumen and passion for youth development to the academy, which she launched in 2015. She is a savvy consultant who is experienced in coordinating music events that attract young audiences.
Sue’s academic background in Politics, Philosophy, and Economics (PPE) piqued her interest in business ethics — a subject she ended up teaching at UCT during the final year of her Honours degree. She also loves cats and practices Jiu-jitsu.