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Next Top Entrepreneur Competition Tool Kit

Drake’s Next Top Entrepreneur competition will enable student participants to develop, practice, and polish entrepreneurial skills for the future.  While previous experience in entrepreneurship may be helpful, prior experience is not a defining factor of the competition.  Creativity and the ability to present oneself well are two primary factors on which the contestants will be judged.  All students have the ability to participate and excel in this competition, regardless of their experience level or knowledge of entrepreneurship.

Participants will be judged based on their performance in the competition.  All contestants/contestant teams must work to produce their own work.  At the end of each round, judges will use a set of predetermined criteria to determine who will advance to the next round and who will be eliminated. All participants of Drake’s Next Top Entrepreneur must present themselves on the day of the competition dressed in business attire.

Hints

  • Be aware of the abilities and types of skills expected of you throughout the course of the competition.
  • Practice your presentation and oratorical skills. These skills are highly valuable in the entrepreneurial world as well as many other areas of heavy emphasis on these particular skills during the event.
  • Think and be creative in the assigned tasks. Do not be afraid to use your imagination because this may be a decisive factor in advancing to the next round(s) of competition.

Round 1

All entrants of the competition will participate in this round. Contestants are expected to demonstrate their entrepreneurial potential within a set period of time. Participants will have three minutes to present their entrepreneurial idea.  The participants may make a speech on the subject matter or make a visual presentation. The presentation should outline, provide validity for, and show the potential impact of your idea. 

Cuts will be made based on the participants’ originality, creativity, and showmanship. Contestants will be hand-picked for elimination by the panel of judges.

Out of the total number of entrants, only ten will advance to the next round. Top performers will be selected to move on to round two. The best three presentations will also receive cash prizes of $100, $50, and $25, respectively.

Additional Information

  • No handouts – all materials must be shared within the 3 minute time period.
  • No questions will be allowed from the judges.
  • The three minute time frame will be strictly adhered to. 
  • The order of presentations will be random.  An order of presentations will be posted at the beginning of the round.  Any entries that have extenuating circumstances dictating when they are available should contact deltarx@drake.edu.
  • The only individuals in the room during the presentations will be the judges, DELTA Rx team members and facilitators of the competition.  Students will remain outside the room until their presentation time. 

Judging Criteria

Criteria for Advancing Rating (1-10)
Demonstrates a propensity for originality and creativity in the idea 1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding
Possesses an ability for showmanship and persuasiveness in the presentation 1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding
Discusses the benefit to society
 
1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding
Gives a reason to believe in the product/service.
 
1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding
Discusses how the product/service is new and different 1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding

Round 2 

This round will consist of a more challenging task that will involve several steps and will be performed during the competition time period. An impromptu health care related scenario will be given, and participants will have 1 hour to create a three-minute presentation. The presentation should follow the structure of round one by outlining, providing validity for, and potential impact of the idea to respond to or solve the given health care related scenario.  Contestants will be judged on originality, creativity, ability to work under pressure, and presentation skills, including the contestant’s speaking abilities. Following this round, five individuals/teams will advance to the next round. The best three presentations will receive cash prizes of $100, $50, and $25, respectively.

Additional Information

  • No handouts – all materials must be shared within the 3 minute time period.
  • No questions will be allowed from the judges.
  • The three minute time frame will be strictly adhered to.
  • The order of presentations will be random.  An order of presentations will be posted at the beginning of the round.  Any entries that have extenuating circumstances dictating when they are available should contact deltarx@drake.edu.
  • The only individuals in the room during the presentations will be the judges, DELTA Rx team members and facilitators of the competition.  Students will remain outside the room until their presentation time. 

Judging Criteria

Criteria for Advancing Rating (1-10)
Demonstrates an acute ability to work well under pressure 1 did no work/performed poorly5 average10 outstanding
Does not show hesitation or concern in taking initiative  1 did no work/performed poorly5 average10 outstanding
Demonstrates a propensity for originality and creativity in the idea 1 did no work/performed poorly5 average10 outstanding
Possesses an ability for showmanship and persuasiveness in his/her presentation 1 did no work/performed poorly5 average10 outstanding
Discusses how the product/service is new and different 1 did no work/performed poorly5 average10 outstanding

Round 3 

As the final round, contestants will be expected to create a proposal and strategy plan that showcases their creativity and ability to formulate ideas and take initiative.  Contestants may use their initial idea from Round 1, their developed idea from Round 2, or a new original idea when developing their plan.  The plan should be a brief outline of the intentions of a proposed business venture and how it is likely to thrive and prosper, using the 10 slide format below. Within these slides, the proposal should detail the unique selling points of the venture, how it would stand out from the competition. An action plan for securing financing for the venture should be included as well as an outline of the history of the idea, including how it came about and who would be involved in the venture. Within the business model discussion, participants should comment on any trademark or intellectual property considerations. Finally, information about the target market should be included and participants should prepare a realistic analysis of the achievements they hope to accomplish as well as why they believe the analysis is accurate. Participants will have ten to fifteen minutes to present their plan. The best three presentations will also receive cash prizes of $1500, $1000, and $500 respectively.

The components of the mini-business plan include:

  • Follow the 10/20/30 rule
  • 10 slides, 20 minutes with 30-point font  (15 minute presentation; 5 minutes questions)

Title                                                                Marketing and sales
Problem                                                           Competition
Solution                                                           Team
Business model                                                 Projections (including financing)
Underlying magic                                              Status and timeline

* Guy Kowasaki  (http://www.truemors.com/ and http://www.iptv.org/video/detail.cfm/447)

Additional information

  • Handouts will be allowed.
  • Judges will ask questions.
  • The 15 minute presentation and 5 minute questioning time frame will be adhered to.
  • The order of presentations will be random.  An order of presentations will be posted at the beginning of the round.  Any entries that have extenuating circumstances dictating when they are available should contact deltarx@drake.edu.
  • Round 3 will be open to all attendees as well as other teams.

Judging Criteria

Criteria for Advancing Rating (1-10)
Creates a highly innovative and quality proposal 1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding
Possesses exceptional oratorical skills
 
1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding
 Discusses the benefit to society 1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding
 Gives a reason to believe in the product/service. 1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding
Discusses how the product/service is new and different 1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding
Covers the topics listed in the mini-business plan 1 did no work/performed poorly
5 average
10 outstanding

Elevator Pitch Suggestions

Overview and Structure

The elevator speech will allow judges to assess the commercial strength of the new business by listening to the content and persuasiveness of the speaker.

The analogy was derived from the short duration of an elevator ride; what would you say if you happened to get into an elevator with someone who could buy or fund your idea? The goal would be for your Elevator Pitch to get you an opportunity to make a formal presentation. Each student team will have a maximum of three (3) minutes for their elevator pitch, which should answer several key questions:

  • What is your vision?
  • What is new or unique about this idea?
  • Who are your customers and why will they want this?
  • Why is your idea going to be successful?
  • Who else is doing it?
  • Why should an investor be interested?
  • What specifics do you have to support your case? 

 

Information to consider when putting together your pitch

What is your product or service? Briefly describe what it is you sell. Do not go into excruciating detail.

Who is your market? Briefly discuss whom you are selling the product or service to. What industry is it? How large of a market do they represent?

What is your revenue model? Or, how do you expect to make money?

Who is behind the company? "Bet on the jockey, not the horse" is a familiar saying among Investors. Tell them a little about you and your team's background and achievements.

Who is your competition? Don't have any? Think again. Briefly discuss who they are and what they have accomplished. Successful competition is an advantage-they are proof your business model and/or concept work.

What is your competitive advantage? Simply being in an industry with successful competitors is not enough. You need to effectively communicate how your company is different and why you have an advantage over the competition. A better distribution channel? Key partners? Proprietary technology?

What your "Elevator Pitch" should contain:

  • A "hook" Open your pitch by getting the investor or audience's attention with a "hook." A statement or question that stimulates their interest to want to hear more.
  • Passion - show it! A good pitch raises pulses Investors expect energy and dedication from entrepreneurs.
  • A call to action End your presentation with a request - ask your audience to do something - one example might be asking for a business card to follow-up the introduction. The Elevator Pitch is something you should practice and perfect. It is the basic introduction of who you are and what you are looking for. It will form the basis of your introductory message when networking, your opening statement in telephone contacts with employers, and the foundation of your "Tell me about yourself" answer in interviews.

Adapted from the following web site: http://www.be.wvu.edu/bpc/tips_tools/index.htm#

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