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Is the European youth entrepreneurial oriented?

The data don’t show it, but the answer is simple and clear - yes. Between the 9th and the 13th of July Brussels hosted the second edition of ThinkYoung’s Entrepreneurship Summer School to which 70 participants from 19 countries came, expressing Europe’s multicultural.

By: EBR - Posted: Monday, September 3, 2012

by Sofia Trindade

“The Entrepreneurship Summer School it’s all about young people from all over Europe gathering in order to understand what entrepreneurship is about in terms of competencies, in terms on how can they open their business in the future” explains Florent Barel, from the European Institute for Industrial Leadership, the institution in charge of developing the summer school methodology.

“Basically what we are doing is a very innovative learning experience. Interviewing experienced entrepreneurs in order to get the knowledge that they are looking for not just the knowledge that we teach them trough power point presentations” as Mr. Barel explained.

10 entrepreneurs shared their experience with the participants. All of them coming from different backgrounds and with different life experience: different type of business, different ways of ruling their company and different size of company.

To prove the women important role in the European market the school started with Ms. Madi Sharma, an inspiring case of whilling and profissionalism.

“I have no skills, I have no training, I’m Asian, I’m a female and I’m a survivor of domestic violence so at the time I had absolutely no confidence. 8 years later I built a business of 10.000 products per week supplying supermarkets and airlines” explained very openly Ms. Sharma to the participants underlining also the importance of the ethics in a company “just remember the brand is the DNA of the company - is everything you stand for!” adding that “people buy from people.. Whatever your marketing strategy is means nothing without you behind and making it work”.

And if people buy from people it is equally true that people learn from people. Wytze Russchen, founder and managing director of Russchen Consultants, was one of the speakers at the second edition of the Entrepreneurship Summer School. He highlighted the importance of putting yourself out there in the job market as a new “product” for the Human Recourses sections of enterprises to pick you, but it’s not all about the CV. An important part of making “you” a label is to talk with people – network!

“What is happening in the presentations is important but other thing is what happens in the coffee breaks, in the smoking break, in the corridors. It is much more important in Brussels than the official meetings and here is not different” adding that “in the breaks I got a lot of questions and business cards and requests to meet or to change emails. And I must say that I already have a meeting in Saturday morning (14/07)” reveled Mr. Wytze Russchen.

The participants knew how to make the most profit experience of their meeting and interviews with the speakers as Alieda Moore, participant from the UK, explained us “definitely I’ve learned so much that I’ve never tough of before and it has been very helpful. Every exercise, whether is it only listening to the entrepreneurs or interviewing them. After it we review it, making this presentation - we are just going over the information all the time”.

Going through all the info at all the time so they have all the necessary tips and don’t lose time when they start their own business, because time is money, is an important component of the school.

Krunoslav Klaric, a participant from Croatia, is the real prove that time is ticking to all the participants as some of them were already developing some projects before coming to the summer school “we are building a mobile application to be able to combined with varied sources of gadgets and know currently we have a beta version and I came here to get some insights to get some mentorship from this people and it was very successful for me!”.

But he is not the only one. Also Dmitry Kirillin, from Russia, is developing a project, since the beginning of this year, from which he revels a little bit “it consists in the optimization solution which helps the companies which trade with each other to do it better, do it more nicely with the integration of the systems, updating all the data instantly with no manual needs”. For Dmitry and for many participants fellows the Entrepreneurship Summer School was a great opportunity to put into practice all their projects “this school is very nice and generalizing the experience like the fact that we have to interview the people, we have to structure the information is very applicable to try to make our guides as good as possible”, says Dmitry.

Heling Xu, from China/UK, also underlines the importance of the school in his future life projects adding the big difference between ThinkYoung’s Summer School and other Summer School about the topics “actually we make our own program. I think that’s the potentiality of this school, especially the partners because entrepreneurship is all about connecting with other people and working together”.

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