The Start-up Accelerator is a series of events put on by the Basecamp Enterprise team which are taking part between October and December with the aim of equipping you with an enterprising skillset. This skillset will help you become more employable as well as equipping founders with the start-up knowledge needed for developing their start-up.
‘’What is an Enterprise skillset?’’
You may hear that phrase and think it just applies to those who wish to set up a business. That may not be within your career plans but enterprise skills are still very important.
Enterprise skills may also be called ‘employability skills’ or ‘soft skills’ and these types of skills are always sought after by employers, yet many candidates overlook their importance. Skills that make up an Enterprise skillset may include the ability to make strategic decisions, working independently and problem solving. (more…)
The Intrapreneurial Knowledge Exchange Enterprise Pathway (IKEEP) begins with fully funded training to equip you with the skills to drive innovation and bring fresh thinking to businesses.
Once you’ve completed your intrapreneurial training, you can apply for a project placement and get the opportunity to take your new skills and help a business solve an innovative challenge.
Andreea Patrunjel, a postgraduate student, studying an MSc in Computer Science at the University of Bristol, took part in the IKEEP programme. She completed IKEEP’s online Intrapreneurial training and went on to apply for and take part in the 4-week project placement. She was matched with a Bristol start-up, Groundwaves, a company which have pioneered some of the most powerful haptic technology, and applied it in a footwear product, fusing the worlds of fashion and technology.
We caught up with Andreea to hear more about her experience with IKEEP…
What attracted you to participate in the IKEEP Programme?
The IKEEP Programme appealed to me through its structure. The amazing opportunity to first complete the training aspect and gain intrapreneurial skills, such as business plan development and management skills and then use that knowledge to solve a real-life challenge within the project placement made me want to take part in this programme.
What did you learn from the Intrapreneurial training?
The Intrapreneurial training provided me with invaluable knowledge. It was tailored in such a way that new concepts were explained very well, where you could practice what you learnt at every stage of the training.
The interactive IKEEP video training session at the end was a nice way to go over the material we learnt from the training chapters and use breakout rooms to discuss our thoughts. It really put emphasis on how important teamwork is. The material recommended at the end of each training chapter provided numerous resources which we could access in order to enhance a particular notion.
What did you learn from the business that you were matched with during the project placement?
I have learnt how important it is to lead with passion, the power to pivot and how these can make a huge difference when you stumble upon challenges. It also gave me a good overview on how you build a start-up. It showed me how extraordinary it is to have the right people in a team to be dynamic; and the steps undertaken to turn your idea into action.
During my team’s project placement, we worked closely with the founders of Groundwaves to tackle the future costumer base for their innovative product. The support we received from them and their open–mindedness to our ideas was truly encouraging.
Would you recommend this programme to other students at the University of Bristol?
I would definitely recommend the IKEEP programme to other students and I would encourage them to apply for the project placement as well as the intrapreneurial training because together they are a very effective and interactive learning process. The IKEEP Programme would also benefit students who have an entrepreneurial mindset but feel like they would want to work within an established company first in order to learn how to navigate becoming an entrepreneur within a company (an intrapreneur) to generate value and allow their ideas to be seen.
The IKEEP Programme consists of high-quality knowledge exchange opportunities, providing fresh perspectives and skills to enable regional businesses to grow while honing the talent of future graduates.
Students involved will have participated in online training in a range of business areas such as managing innovation, business model development and project management. Student teams are ready to be placed within a company to develop business model solutions, improve market awareness and more!
Senmag Robotics’s Experience with IKEEP
Senmag Robotics took part in the IKEEP Programme this year. The student team, matched to this business, carried out market research to evaluate the most suitable markets and potential customers/early adopters for their product. They were also involved in the company’s website design, implementing improvements using HTML and CSS.
Senmag Robotics is a Bristol-based start-up andNew Enterprise Competition finalist producing affordable haptic feedback technology, which allows a user to physically interact with computer simulations, making environments and objects in AR/VR feel solid.
Spyros Lavetiz is the CEO and Co-founder of Senmag Robotics and has recently completed his final year of a master’s degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Bristol.
We spoke to Spyros to find out more about his experience with IKEEP…
Why did you applytothe IKEEP Programme?
Considering we are an early start up, Senmag Robotics did not have access to funding to employ interns or staff. The IKEEP Programme provided the funding required to make this project happen. As a business, we believe this programme provided essential help, and the team of students were very eager to work hard and produce top results.
What did the student team learn during this project placement?
The students learnt how an early start-up functions, how to carry out market research and how to cooperate in a small team of engineers to get the best possible outcome.
How did the project benefityourbusiness?
The market research has provided useful insights into the markets and the companies that Senmag Robotics should target. More importantly, the website work was excellent. It was a big improvement from the previous version.
As a final year BSc Psychology student, I wanted to use this year to develop my skills and experience so that I would be in a strong position to apply for graduate jobs. After taking a course on drugs and addiction as part of my degree, I realized that I felt passionate about this subject.
I decided that I wanted to look for an internship in a related role, to help me to decide if I would enjoy working in this field. However, I was not finding many advertised opportunities for the kinds of internships I was interested in.
Alessia, a first-year postgraduate student participated in the COVID-19 SME Internship Scheme last spring. Here’s what she has to say about her experience.
What was your role?
During my 9-week internship at i3Works, I worked as a Marketing and Sales Support Intern for 15 hours a week, divided over three days. i3Works is a management consultancy andmy main responsibilities for the first few weeks included learning how the company acquires new contracts, editing documents and case studies, and thinking of new ideas to implement in order to improve the consultancy’s marketing strategy.(more…)
At the Careers Service we know LGBTQ+ students can face additional challenges to career thinking. This may include facing discrimination in recruitment practices, and identifying inclusive and supportive workplaces.
“I am not good enough, maybe that is why I was rejected”.
“I will give up on applying for xxx company because I am a failure.”
After experiencing a rejection, you might find yourself having negative thoughts like the above. It is important to be aware of these negative thoughts and recognize them as a normal and temporary response to a setback. At times like these, it can be really helpful to practice self-compassion – imagine how you would treat a friend or loved one who had just received the same news!
After clearing the negativity in your headspace, take this opportunity to reflect on your application, and try and isolate exactly what didn’t go the way you wanted it to. A great way to start is to carefully read any feedback the employer has provided you with. If you didn’t receive much feedback, you might be able to arrange a feedback call to ask the employer which areas you can improve on.
Although your peers may be posting about their achievements on LinkedIn, they also had their fair share of rejections. Searching for a job is a difficult process, and it is only natural that, no matter how great your CV is, you will be facing rejections at some point during your job search. Remember that there are many variables during a job search that are out your control – it’s best to focus on those things that you can control!
The rejection might be a blessing in disguise
It might be that you just weren’t quite the right fit with the firm culturally, in which case, a ‘rejection’ might be a good thing. If a firm’s culture does not fit yours, working there may not have been the best option for you anyway!
Remember that your first graduate job need not be your “dream job”: any first job where you have good colleagues and good bosses, who can show you the ropes within the working world, will make you a stronger candidate for future roles.
Rejection is never enjoyable. But if you are able to reflect on it, you will put yourself in a much better position for your next application. Get support from your mentors and your trusted peers, who can give you feedback on your application and your interview skills. Keep working hard to tailor your applications, and seek support from the Careers Service through the live chat service. Just keep swimming!
Author: Yun Wen Soh, Career Peer Support Assistant and Final Year LLB student
This blog post is one of a series produced by our Career Peer Support Assistants, our fantastic team of current Bristol students working part-time with the Careers Service. Look out for further CPSA case studies coming soon!
Maybe you have a summer job or are thinking of doing some volunteering or an internship. If so, you could already be partway there to achieving the Award! As long as your experience takes place during your time as a student, you could get recognition for it.
At the Careers Service we know BAME students can face additional challenges to career thinking. This may include facing discrimination in recruitment practices, exploring career ideas when you don’t know what’s out there, or getting quality work experience with less developed networks.