Enterprise Week opens for business

The UK’s youngest managing director is calling the under-30s across the country to unleash their entrepreneurial streak and turn their ideas into reality during this year’s Enterprise Week.

From today until Sunday 20 November, a host of events, including business boot camps, seminars, lectures and ad-hoc conferences go live to urge young people (aged 18-30) to become more enterprising.

Whether it is to encourage employees to think more creatively in the workplace, give aspiring entrepreneurs the tools to start-up, or road test an individual’s idea; Enterprise Week is the chance to make ideas really happen, its organisers say.

The event also hopes to bring social enterprise into the limelight, providing a forum for discussion on local or school projects designed to bring real benefits to local communities.

Last month, Julia Mitchell told Freelance UK how Enterprise Week was vital in making her realise that setting up Toast PR was an achievable yet pressing ambition, made simple by a network of business helpers and young people with similar enterprising aims.

Another young entrepreneur, Liam Rhodes, is a vocal advocate of Enterprise Week, citing its coordinator - the East Midlands Development Agency(EMDA), as a key enabler for people’s untapped success in business.

Last year, Mr Rhodes became the youngest ever entrepreneur to be accepted as a Director by Companies House, when the then-15-year-old set up his brainchild IT company, iFuse Group.

“I believe everybody has ideas which can be turned into an enterprising project, it’s just a case of spotting opportunities and taking action when you can,” said Mr Rhodes, who founded iFuse with a business partner.

“This campaign backed by EMDA, is an ideal opportunity to get your ideas off the ground as there are lots of events you can attend where you can find out what support is out there to help you.”

He added that creative types and aspiring business people should not be deterred from starting up or pursuing their ideas because, “professionalism and business know-how can be learned.”

Jessie Nonclercq is undertaking a graduate placement at EMDA after making the enterprising decision to change careers.

She has helped co-ordinate Enterprise Week in the East of England – a region that among other attractions, will host Business Boot Camp, which involves 15 ambitious firms working over 12 weeks to overcome the barriers to business.

“You’re never too young to be enterprising,” said Ms Nonclercq.

“There are over 110 events taking place throughout the region as part of Enterprise Week to encourage young people to think creatively and act upon their ideas. Whether you are creative, sporty, scientific or business minded Enterprise Week can support you.”

Enterprise Week’s events are organised by Enterprise Insight, a group founded by the Confederation of British Industry, the British Chambers of Commerce, the Institute of Directors and the Federation of Small Businesses.

The FSB said this year should be the biggest-ever national event to spotlight enterprise, with 554 organisations registering details of over 1,400 free, low price and fee-paying events.

Carol Undy, national chairman, said: “Enterprise Week is about giving young people the confidence, skills and inspiration to turn their ideas into reality.

“Challenges and competitions in schools, awards for high achievers and talks for young people using the stories of existing small business owners can inspire young people of promise to go out and achieve in business and the community.”

Wednesday marks Women in Enterprise Day, while Thursday will see an equally impressive number of events to celebrate Social Enterprise.

To find full details of which event is right for you, please visit: http://www.starttalkingideas.org/enterpriseweek


14th November 2005

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