It all started on a beautiful chilled day, Friday 02 November at 10:00, during Employability Week at Newcastle University Business School. A long productive week filled with several events and fantastic experiences. Each event was tailored to meet the needs of all students across different fields of studies. I personally found that week to be enlightening. Employers such as PWC, Blusky, Hays Global and HSBC attended to present their companies. Whilst NUSU and Newcastle University Career Service were also present to educate us and help set us on the right career path for being future leaders. Along with a few members of my MBA Cohort, we participated in this event to connect with future employees and better understand other factors relevant to the workplace. As a result, I feel more confident on taking the next step in my career.
About the Challenge
The morning session allowed us to discuss and share ideas, and listen to other perspectives about the future. This was inspiring, as the program was open to all students. 40 students participated in 8 groups of 5. Each group had to pitch their ideas to business owners, who were the judges. I met loads of new people during this challenge. My Group brain stormed ‘Emerging Technology’, thinking about how to adapt to a fast-changing work environment and to create a product for the future. We all stretched our minds as far as we could, suddenly we realised how much we could impact our world positively if only we allowed ourselves. The result of the exercise was the birth of the ‘Health Recovery Pod’ (HRP), a product created for the work place to fix health challenges that employees may face in the future. Recommending measures they could put in place to avert such crises like the saying goes, ‘A stitch in time saves nine’.
The competition was tough but our team worked brilliantly together to win the competition. Our reward was a gift card to shop at Intu Eldon Square. Another team I also found interesting and inspiring was the ‘Busy Bee’ whose business idea was integrating a mental health resource into a HR tool to help improve employee’s mental health. No wonder the Busy Bee won the People’s Choice Award (voted for by all participant who took part in the event). It felt good seeing one of the team members put something which was very personal to him and a part of his life, using it positively by putting it into a business idea. After the competition he said, ‘It was a fantastic feeling and potentially something to pursue as a part of my future’. The ‘Busy Bee’ also received a prize.
Overall, the ‘Future Work Challenge’ was fantastic and access to some great and experienced entrepreneurs from across the university. The challenge got me to be in touch with skills I didn’t even know I had. It was such a good feeling realising how much I’m capable of doing and achieving only if I allow myself think outside the box. It was fun and challenging as well. I made new connections and that I will take forward with me for the rest of my career. Finally, I’d just like to say thank you to ‘Start-up’ organisers and Newcastle University Business School for this incredible opportunity. I would definitely recommend to anyone, to sign up for next year’s event.