Guido Spooren, Week 48, Entrepreneurship & Networks Assignment Blog 5

Guido Spooren, Week 48, Entrepreneurship & Networks Assignment Blog 5

Hi readers, welcome to my fifth blog about Entrepreneurship and Networks!

For this blog, I had another interview with the 29-year-old male entrepreneur I had interviewed for last week´s blog about networking behavior. This time, I talked to him about association memberships and its returns. I used the paper from Teckchandani and a guest lecture from Ronald van Es as the basis for my questions.

The entrepreneur told me that he had been a member of a lot of associations, mainly business related, but he did not actively attend meetings or anything like that anymore, so he found that irrelevant. Then he told me that he is nowadays a voluntary and active member of 3 associations, consisting of 1 social/civil association and 2 business/professional associations, as described by Teckchandi (2014) in his paper. The social/civil association is an American football club named Amsterdam Crusaders, which he visits about 3 times per week. The 2 business/professional associations are Enactus VU and TechClub, both for which he attends weekly meetings with other members and friends.

When I asked the entrepreneur about which of those associations were most interesting to his business, without hesitation, he immediately replied that Enactus VU and TechClub were most interesting. At those associations, he had great networking opportunities and he found new and relevant information from young people for his own company and the companies he invested in, since he explained that everyone who went there, especially TechClub, had the same interests. According to Teckchandani (2014), membership associations can, among other things, bring like-minded people together who may not otherwise meet, which is true in this case. The Amsterdam Crusaders however was more like a hobby and a leisure activity with his friends.

When I think about for example how the entrepreneur can make his memberships more productive, I think that it is important for the entrepreneur to realize that a mix of both civil and business relations is very important. As Ronald van Es told in his lecture: a variety in members gives the best chance of finding what you need, concerning resources and information. However, key to realizing this is trust, so spending time with those people, and not just in a business and professional setting, is very important. That is why I think that it is important for the entrepreneur to either make sure that he gets more involved with people from the Amsterdam Crusaders that can be valuable for his company, or to find other social/civil associations, in order to meet new people that can be of value for his company.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my blog and hopefully you will read my next week’s blog as well! 🙂

Guido

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Matthijs de Mari – Week 48 – Entrepreneurship and Networks: Assignment 5

Matthijs de Mari – Week 48 – Entrepreneurship and Networks: Assignment 5

Hi readers!

This week we had to re-invite one of the entrepreneurs we interviewed in the past week and ask them about association membership. I re-invited the 23 year old entrepreneur who owns a company together with his partner that makes unique jackets. I asked him if he had any voluntary membership, but he didn’t yet. He mentioned that he is still in his start-up phase and is too busy right now to join these “clubs” because he is still in university and hasn’t really looked into it. This is why I will pay attention to the alternative question that pays attention to which association I would recommend for him and which social network mechanisms he needs to anticipate on in order to make his membership productive for his business.

I would recommend the entrepreneur to become a member of business and professional associations, since these associations are helpful for increasing business interest. So the brand gets more known in the world and his network can grow bigger and create access to more resources. This is especially important because he is still in the start-up phase of his company. To make his membership productive for his company I would recommend him to come and participate in meeting actively and maybe even organize these.

What came forth out of the interview later, was that the entrepreneur does go, with his partner, to conventions to look at the latest trends and keep up with what the market wants. This is where he also meets some other shop owners and get to know what they do and how they work in other companies. This is why these exhibitions can create a valuable network for him.

See you next week,

Matthijs

Association membership & Entrepreneurship – Week 48 – Dina Zaouid

Association membership & Entrepreneurship – Week 48 – Dina Zaouid

Entrepreneurship & Networks

Hello readers! It’s already the penultimate weekly assignment of this course. The subject of this week’s assignment is association membership and how it can play a significant role in entrepreneurship. In order to hear a real-life experience of entrepreneurs about association membership I re-invited the entrepreneur of last week, the website designer (male, 29 years old).

The young male entrepreneur is a member of three associations, two civic & social associations and one professional association. The associations are a football club, Dutch Nile and WebProfessionals, respectively. Dutch Nile is a youth association that aims to create solidarity among the Egyptian youth in the Netherlands to add value to the society. WebProfessionals.org aka the World Organization of Webmasters (WOW) on the other hand, is a non-profit professional association dedicated to the support of individuals and organizations who create, manage or market web sites. According to the entrepreneur, all three associations have played their parts in his enterprise. The resources obtained from the football club are mainly categorized in moral support from his friends. “My football team and I are very close friends of each other and they always cheered me up when my enterprise wasn’t running at the beginning and they always encouraged me to go on and to believe in myself. They really helped me.” So the moral support of his friends had positive outcomes for his enterprise. Next to being a member of a football club, the entrepreneur was a member of the management board of Dutch Nile. He maintained their website and gained clients for his enterprise from the Egyptian community. The website designer told me that through his experience at Dutch Nile he definitely broadened his network and gained resources varying from clients to employees, which in turn resulted in the outcomes status (as a professional website designer) and wealth. The last association the entrepreneur is a member of is WebProfessionals. According to him this association was of most interest for his enterprise, which is not completely in line with Teckchandani’s theory. Teckchandani states that civil & social association are of higher value for entrepreneurs than business & professional associations. The website designer however, got the most important resources (knowledge and information, certificates, business partners) from this association, which resulted in status, prestige and wealth.

So keep in mind, association membership indeed adds a great value to entrepreneurship!

Kind regards,
Dina Zaouid 2524902

Assignment 5 – Entrepreneurship and Network – M. van der Burg

Assignment 5 – Entrepreneurship and Network – M. van der Burg

Dear Readers,

For this assignment we have been asked to re-invite one of the entrepreneurs we have interviewed for the previous assignment and ask him about association membership and its returns. The questions I asked partly originate from the interesting lecture by Ronald van Es. He defined the two most important types of associations, these are social & civil associations and business & professional associations.

I re-invited the male entrepreneur who owns multiple companies and is quite a successful networker. The information I had to use for this interview is from Teckchandani (2014). It’s really interesting to notice which how association memberships influence my entrepreneur.

Since this entrepreneur is no longer really active in creating new business and pursuing new opportunities. He is no longer full time member of a network, he does however visited meetings and presentations of multiple clubs quite often. He really likes to share his opinion and experience with other entrepreneurs. Furthermore he’s an active golf player where he is also actively sharing his experiences and knowledge. This is beneficial for both him and other entrepreneurs.

However he told me that when he was still actively pursuing business opportunities, he was a highly active member of multiple associations. The first member association he was part of was when he was studying in Amsterdam. He was part of an association with quite a few students. It gained him quite a lot of knowledge, opportunities, resources and friends. He stayed in touch with quite a few people from this association during his life. Ronald van Es did describe this phenomenon; trust is the basis of exchange in a relationship. So it’s important to gain trust among your fellow memberships. My entrepreneur managed to accomplish this and gained trust from lots of people which improved the value of his network and was really beneficial for his career since he had lots of people who were willing the help him.

He advices all young entrepreneurs to heavily invest in a network, it’s beneficial for your career and generates valuable friendships.

Martijn

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Guido Spooren, Week 48, New To-Do’s

Guido Spooren, Week 48, New To-Do’s

Hi readers, welcome to my eleventh blog about my internship at Feniksgroep.

Last Tuesday, we had yet another meeting with everyone from our group to talk about everyone’s to-do’s and their progress on that so far. Last time, I finished everything that I had to do personally and some other group members as well, so that’s why we had to come up with new things that need to be done before next meeting, which will probably be next Tuesday. Remember that last time, I had to contact the webmaster of the Feniksgroep website about the possibilities of us potentially getting our own website. Fortunately, he came up with some ideas, so now it is up to us to select the best option as far as time and budget goes. Hopefully, I will be able to report on this in my next week’s blog. On a side note, funny thing is that last week, during a Entrepreneurship & Networks class, we discussed the issue of which types of things you would not ask a good friend to do, but rather someone else. Actually making a website was one of those things, since it might be awkward to make comments on the work of a good friend or when you are not satisfied with the way he works (e.g. not updating the website enough). This reminded me once more that it was a good decision to ask the webmaster for help.

As for next week, (as told above) I will keep having contact with the webmaster and I will try to find sponsors together with one of my group mates, in order to hopefully make it easier to finance all of our ideas. Besides that, in order to make our folder and video more widely known, we will try to come in contact with for instance BNR News Radio, in order to talk about a possible collaboration.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my blog and hopefully you will read my next week’s blog as well! 🙂

Guido

Robbert de Kruijff, week 48, Internship

Robbert de Kruijff, week 48, Internship

This week we had a meeting to see how far we are and in what terms we are close to realizing the video and realizing the leaflet. My focus is on the video together with one of the other group members. This week we looked for an editor, which is pretty hard to find for the low budget we have. The problem is not only the limited budget, but also the fact that we have to divide the budget in a way so we can realize both the leaflet and the video in the best and most efficient way.

One thing we didn’t realize is the fact that quite a big part of the budget will have to go to a catering for all the people helping with the video, this is made clear to us by our director. This seems logical when you film a whole day and ask people to help you, but it is easy to overlook.

This week we did succeed to arrange some of the things and people we need for the video for free or for almost nothing. We arranged a cameraman with experience in this particular field of videos. We asked around for a good location, but that’s hard because it will have to be a location which has a good looking kitchen, a bedroom, a room with a table for breakfast, a study room, and a good looking office, the last seems to be the hardest to arrange. Further, we are looking for good actors through our own network and through social media. We also decided to do two meetings per week with the group, this way we hope to work more efficient and faster.

Internship SEEDS Week 38 – M. van der Burg

Internship SEEDS Week 38 – M. van der Burg

Today we are going to discuss our progress with our contact person at SEEDS. We are well on track and have our challenge almost finished. We have been working on an improved marketing model for SEEDS since that’s what is lacking for them at the moment. We are really interested in the feedback our contact person at SEEDS will be sharing with us tomorrow. Furthermore we are going to define a clear plan about our challenge and business case for the next two months since at the moment we are lacking clear research. Next week we will have our plan ready. We are going to organize interviews about the usability of the SEEDS website and furthermore we are going to do  in-depth usability literature research of the SEEDS website. Next week I will present our schedule with interviews and literature research.

At the same time it does become clear for us how SEEDS is contributing to a better entrepreneurial climate. This is done by only allowing companies on the platform, who contribute to the environment.  SEEDS is not allowing companies which are only started and running for personal gain. This is totally different approach compared to other crowd funding platforms. Other platforms are running for personal gain, and do not mind whether or not a company adds value to the environment and entrepreneurial climate.

Martijn

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