Over these past four days, we all realised that passion, mindset and energy are the main key points to have a very successful entrepreneurship and to start your own business.
– Team Passionaire, Diploma in Graphic Communication, Year 2, NAFA
As Landscape & Architecture students, we have no background in business. We thought that it is straightforward to create a business - it’s just to think about something you want to make and then you have it; but after the workshop, we realised that the entire process is very tough and complicated.
Students have the knack of thinking creatively, to dream about ideas that could change the world but they often lack the business sense to turn their dreams into reality. How do you get them to look at their ideas through a business lens?
The objective of the Entrepreneurship Boot Camp was to help NAFA students to understand an entrepreneur’s mindset and to equip them with the tools, techniques and framework required to start their own business that could sustain changing market forces.
But I’m not the only one…
The students were prompted to self-organise and form groups according to common ideas and shared interests for their business. This taught them the importance of working towards a common goal and the benefits of cross-disciplinary teams, as well as to appreciate different point of views and the significance of teamwork.
We collected all of our ideas together and we worked together as a team; that was one of the most enjoyable things during this Boot Camp.
As a team, the workshop allows us to learn about one other, especially students from different programmes, i.e. Fine Art, Dance and 3D Design. Our learning capacity has been enhanced to learn beyond our scope.
To give students a chance to interact with the outside world, we invited some industry experts and entrepreneurs to share their fascinating journeys as a source of inspiration and encouragement to them. These ‘mentors’ provided guidance and provided feedback to each group throughout all four days of the Boot Camp.
Guillaume Levy-Lambert, co-founder of The MaGMA Collection, and of Art Porters Gallery shared this during his mentor talk:
I like the idea that students have to work as a team and to pitch collectively to a jury. It’s a very life-like situation, and it was wonderful to see different teams of students handling this challenge in different ways.
Theatre and Arts Management students who proposed a physical space 24/7 available for artists to do their personal projects, collaborate, rehearse and encourage fusion work, shared:
The coaches were very helpful in trying to elevate our ideas and lead them into projects that can be successful. They coached us individually and customised our learning experience.
Over four days, we witnessed some gruelling brain work, some sleepless nights, a compelling drive to succeed, fabulous teamwork and top-class storytelling. On the last day, students pitched their business ideas to a panel of external as well as internal jury members to inspire and compel them to invest in their vision.
Another mentor for this Boot Camp, Blair Thomson, co-owner and director of Art Gallery Addicted Pte Ltd, presented his career path on the first day of the Boot Camp. From Barclays and JP Morgan banks to creating his Arts online platform, he has been following his passion for talented art-makers from South Asia. This sharing session was very inspiring for the students and laid the foundations to create a business within the teams. According to Blair,
When I think about entrepreneurship, there're two things: first, entrepreneurship doesn't mean that you have to be sort of somebody independently running your own business. Second, entrepreneurship is innovation, that can actually happen in normal careers as well. It has to be out of the box thinking. We have to get the right people to the table and sort of figure out how to make it actually work.
The essence of entrepreneurship
Although some teams emerged as winners at the end of the Boot Camp, all students took away with them the essential lessons of entrepreneurship — lessons that will guide them to release their dreams, whatever they might be, in the future!
From a group of students from Diploma in Advertising and Diploma in Graphic Communication:
I think this Boot Camp was a great experience as we learned some basics about entrepreneurship, what it takes to run a successful business, and I have been very lucky to work with great teammates because everyone was very motivated and we could bring the project to life in 4 days. It was very fulfilling to be able to deliver this project in a limited period of time.
Go for it! Take a step and learn from that step. I believe also it’s important to remember to ask yourself once in a while ‘What do I want to do when I grow up?’. It’s a very simple question that you can ask yourself at different stages of your life. The entrepreneur who has the clarity of how his business plan fits in overall his life objective has a winning edge. Connecting to this very simple question about your life objective gives you an answer.