One of the most successful workshops our past mentors have created was called ‘Grandma’s shoe shop’. A role-playing session designed to showcase the different ways that products can be displayed and to think about all of the different elements of the process should be accounted for in financial plans.
The group collected all of their shoes and found a bookcase to display the ‘products’. The group was asked to help ‘Grandma’ list out all of her income and outgoings in order to create an accurate price for her products.
One thing that is almost entirely never accounted for is time. Especially with the business owners we work with – they’ll pay their employees salaries, suppliers and bills ahead of themselves and often this is such an afterthought that they just take enough for that evening’s meal, rather than apportioning a salary ahead of selling their products.
By using this role-play scenario, we had fun as a group and were able to have engaging discussions about various issues including pricing, merchandising, packaging, signage, and finance.