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30 May, Thursday
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The library of essays of Proakatemia

How I worked out a case solution with Czechs for a Finnish Company.



Kirjoittanut: Mikhail Filippov - tiimistä Sointu.

Esseen tyyppi: Blogiessee / 1 esseepistettä.
Esseen arvioitu lukuaika on 3 minuuttia.

Life is rich on chances, as well as unpredictable on making them appear in your routine. Most of the time, I believe, you even won’t be able to identify them, and so it was to me. In high spirits, before the Day X, I signed up for the Birth Giving challenge organized for the second-year Czech colleagues from Tiimiakatemia Prague, though as the time passed, I started stressing and losing interest, up to the morning, the peak of these emotions, when I quit it. But after receiving a couple of encouraging words from my relatives, I made my mind, sat on the bike’s seat, and sprinted to Proakatemia to meet with our guests and my temporary teammates for a 10-hour adventure.

I have to be honest here, I got a bit off by the time, so for me the meeting began with a bit awkward introduction to the one of the groups I found to be sitting close to me, which, to my surprise, reacted quite calmly, and accepted me to participate in the Ideation round, where the questions to the customer were formulated. During the question session with the customer, it became clear that the customer in particular will be one of the biggest discoveries and learnings of the day for me. Who’s then it is, you ask me, and, well, It is a company by the name of Tampere Acappella – A company, which specifies in…bringing Choir singing to the company parties and public events! It is like a karaoke bar, but you don’t have to go for it anywhere! Sounds very intriguing and entertaining on paper, isn’t it? Well, reality proved different.

Customer’s weakness was that despite little competition in its niche of market, and a small, but trusting customer base, it lacked promotion of its services, needed for further development and growth of the business, and they wanted us to work on creative ways of raising awareness about existence of such business within a limited free budget, as that was one of the imperative requirements. Once all the questions were answered, the main work began.

As a first year, working with older students was, of course, a valuable experience, not only in terms of personal formal contacts, but also in ways of studying, as even though we study by the same principles and techniques, our approach to problem defining and further resolution differs quite substantially. For example, Czechs do not use Value Proposition Canvas in problem defining process, to which I and some of my colleagues were introduced during a Global Business Challenge, instead going for the Emphasis Canvas, a more customer-oriented tool. Another thing that I found worthy to be implemented into practice will be the relationships between members. Oh boy… Maybe the unusual consequences of being abroad unified them so much, or the two years of mutual projects, but Czechs seemed to be very closely tied up, and mutual understanding of each other helped them in achieving great results in every minute and big discussion we had during the ideation process, so so, that sometimes this cooperation even gave the slight feeling of being an outsider on this party of people with whom I have only one common interest!

 

Separate part of this essay I feel like needs to be dedicated to the Final pitch, as it deserves to be a standalone part of the story with its positive and negative moments. For the final pitch, we had to conduct tests of the developed concepts, and I was working on the concept of Flashmob, for which some part of the group agreed to perform publicly with a song in front of the TAMK Campus to test effectiveness, and I had the duty of observing the effect of performance on social media, and it has been a success – A small rise of subscribers on Instagram of Tiimiakatemia Prague, as well as Proakatemia. It was an extremely fun experience to do. On the other hand, biggest regret of the day was that after my comments about single spirit in a team, in the last moment due to miscommunication between certain parts of the team, our presentation was very rushed, and substantial part of the tests made, apart from the Instagram results put onto slides in a very last moment, were not included in the pitch. Nevertheless, as one of the presenters, I felt that we executed the task successfully.

 

Lastly, after the pitch, before the announcement of the results, we concluded the work with a feedback session, where Proakatemia side introduced guests to its way of Check-out session. And finally, the 10-hour competition, unexpectedly for both teams, finished with an announcement of a draw between us. Client as well has highlighted the strong and weak aspects in our performances, so I know what I may make accent on in a public performance in the future. Summing up, I think it was an amazing experience, and I definitely want to repeat it in the future.

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