Workshop One – Ideas Generation & Product Research



Following on from the FBMplus 2015/16 competition launch earlier in the month (FMBplus 2015/16 Zombie Apocalypse ) it was straight down to business at the first workshop at the Sjovoll Centre, Durham.

FBMplus is a competition now in its 3rd year collaborating with TICE to facilitate a series of workshops to foster enterprise and business in young people across sixth form and FE colleges in Durham. Each workshop has its own challenges that are completed for points with the overall competition winners announced in a final celebration.

Four teams from Bishop Auckland College, Park View School and Framwellgate School Durham came together with their enterprising business ideas for the 2-hour session, which started with an overview of the competition and a reminder of the theme for this year ‘Hospitality’.


The teams were asked to bring in their completed Challenge One tasks: a short video, 5 photographs per team, a short paragraph on why they have entered the competition, their Team Name and a minimum of three business ideas to discuss throughout the session.

Jenny Barrett, Managing Director of TICE led the workshop with a theory presentation establishing foundations for generating new business ideas with the use of SWOT analysis and the PEST factors. Teams were asked to think about each of their business ideas and begin planning their business landscapes considering the internal and external elements that might affect them such as who is the competition, what are the barriers to market entry and does your business have a Unique Selling Point (USP).


Teams discussed the merits of each idea amongst themselves, with business mentor Lee Casey listening to each and offering guidance as needed.  Lee said, “The range and depth of ideas at this early stage shows the level of thought teams are putting into their potential businesses, it will be exciting to see how such ideas evolve over the next few workshops.”

Guest Speaker Carli-Jayne Mac, Owner of The Olde Young Teahouse in Middlesbrough popped in to talk about her business including how she formed the initial idea and the key research she carried out. A Q&A session allowed the teams to find out more and great questions included ‘Were you worried about failing?’ and ‘How much money did you start your business with?’ Carli-Jayne gave a great bit of advise to the FBMplus team members too!  To re-assess their business plans regularly, a tip she picked up from TICE MD Jenny Barrett 10 years ago no less in a lecture at university! Carli-Jayne said, “It was a pleasure to come and tell people about my journey as I was sat right there in a classroom 10 years ago wanting the same thing. I always felt super inspired by visits from people in the industry, especially if they had made it on their own. I hope I can be an inspiration for people just like me and they can become an inspiration for others.”


Team ‘Business as Usual’ said, “Today’s session has been really useful to work through the process of establishing our business ideas.”

Teams now have to decide on their main business idea ahead of Workshop Two on Place and Business Research.  There are a further 3 more workshops in the competition before establishing who are the 2016 FBMplus enterprise champions!