Team Seven – Forever Young: Forever helping
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University Faculty of Business recently organized the Generation. Next: Leadership Programme for The Future Leader of the 21st Century in 2014 in cooperation with Dale Carnegie Training and Hinrich Foundation.
In the first stage, the Dale Carnegie trainers conducted six Professional Development Training Workshops to provide training for Business students in PolyU. During stage two, 40 students were selected to enter the CSR “Sell-to-Help” project competition sponsored by Hinrich Foundation.
This project aims to create jobs for disadvantaged, yet hardworking Cambodian artisans and develop the students’ sense of social responsibility and practical business skills. Here are the insights, aspirations and lesson learned from the seventh team, “Forever Young.”
Developing business skills through helping others
Hello everyone! We are Team Seven Forever Young! We are providing our passion to this effort of selling and helping the Cambodian artisans. In the process, we’re working on developing our own business skills, sense of social responsibility and overall leadership.
As far as what our group has been through, we have had a lot discussions about our target customers (university students or ordinary citizens), our selling strategies (selling ideas or products), our selling channels (online marketing, nongovernmental organizations, booths on campus, stalls on the street), our selling prices and so on. This process forced us to consider various methods for successful selling and evaluate a selling plan from these aspects.
For example, we learned that we have to cater to the needs of our customer. This helped us determine our selling strategy must include the selling of ideas; while these products themselves may not be of essential necessity to customers, the idea of helping disabled Cambodian people who are working with their own hands to support their lives is a need for many.
In addition, this process also required us to voice our own opinions and respect others’ opinions as well. We handled several disagreements with fair judgment based on reasonableness. We have developed ourselves and tried many methods to help others. We look forward to continuing to do so!
Zhu Zibo’s selling experience
Before I started to sell these beautiful products, I already knew it would be very difficult, but the truth is that it was much harder than I thought. For example, when I tried to sell in a big market, I knew that people in mainland China might think the price of our product is very high, but I never thought there would be some people who doubted whether our project is genuine. This added to the pressure and work when I promoted our goods.
Even though most people believed me, once there is one person who expresses distrust, it will encourage others to ask about the project’s authenticity. And because my voice could not reach every person in the market, I had to explain again and again. However, every difficulty I face will help me come one step closer to my destination. I’ve learned a lot during my promotion, just like more patience in my above example.
My hometown is located in the northeast of China, so it’s very cold outside now. No market would allow me to set up a stall inside the building and I had to sell outside of the market. During the first three days, I did not sell even one item. But after I sold my first product (a rabbit) successfully, I focused on those selling notes. It really left a deeper understanding of the value of money on me. This is not the first time I have sold goods, but it is surely the most difficult.
Recently I found an antique market in an underground bazaar where people can sell whatever they want and of course most of them have a long history. Although our products aren’t antiques, I still want to have a try selling there, as those collectors should be richer than people in shopping malls. I believe the story behind our goods will move them!
About the author – Wang Shiya (Kelly)
About the Author – Zhu Zibo (Johnson)
About the Author – Wong Kam Chung
About the Author – Li Ka Ching (Alice)