In the highly competitive world of business, gaining practical experience with a real-life company is invaluable. Leicester Castle Business School (LCBS) supports postgraduate students to gain this much sought after experience by providing them with the exciting opportunity to take part in an Executive Company Project (ECP).
During ECPs, students are placed with businesses in order to conduct research projects free of charge, as requested by their company host. ECPs have proven to be a hugely successful practice, and mutually beneficial for both students and the businesses involved.
The beginning of an exciting opportunity:
Preparation for students going out on their ECPs started with an introductory information session. Students were given an outline of what to expect of their ECP, a briefing concerning ECP processes and examples of the exciting projects available.
Following this, students enjoyed a three-day Work Readiness Workshop designed to equip them with vital skills and knowledge to take with them on their ECP. Academic staff conducted introductory presentations and external speakers led innovative sessions to support students in honing their skills ready for the business world.
With business-focussed activities, presentations, analysis of example company briefs and a communication workshop, students were motivated to go out on their ECPs. In particular, the communication workshop was described by one student as “a great opportunity which took me out of my comfort zone”.
Bolstering business skills:
All aspects of working in a professional environment were covered throughout the Work Readiness Workshop. This included making a good first impression and analysis of reporting style, hosted by LCBS. Students were also challenged to an interactive Dragons Den style business contest, where they had to wisely invest £100,000 with the aim of making £1 million. This session culminated in an awards ceremony with prizes for the teams who made the shrewdest investments.
During the communication workshop, students were provided with language insights and speech feedback from an expert in the field. Students then gave individual presentations and also worked within small groups to hone their communication skills in readiness for their ECP.