Is it possible to teach business on the other side of the world when you are from Rzeszów?
Well, is running a business in Poland different from that in the Caribbean? Do entrepreneurs need different competences when managing companies in different countries? There are local differences, of course, but the basic laws of the market, the principles of business operation, as well as the skills and competences needed by entrepreneurs are the same. They must know how to plan ahead, think strategically, analyze data, and monitor competitors’ activities. And they must have a so-called business acumen. All over the world, not only in OECS countries, business education faces the same challenge – how to give young people a field to train this business acumen? Because it cannot be done only by learning definitions and solving tasks in business books. Because in the OECS countries the vast majority of enterprises are small and medium-sized businesses and the labor market is not large, educating people in entrepreneurship is particularly important. It is crucial to prepare the young generation to run a business with not only theory but also with practice, and this is what business simulations are best suited to.
Was it easy to win this contract?
Definitely not. This tender was the most difficult between the ones in which we, as Revas, have participated so far. During the first stage, OECS conducted a market study of business simulations on their own. They were testing the games themselves and examined the available functionalities. After the first stage was finished, participation in the tender was offered to only 3 companies. Taking part in it required us to demonstrate that our team had extensive experience. It was primarily about showing the history of implementing large scale simulation projects in various institutions (schools, universities, NGOs). But apart from that, the team of experts nominated for the implementation of the project had to present proof of, for example, giving advice on the preparation of business plans, organizing competitions with the use of simulations and conducting workshops for entrepreneurs from at least 1 country of the Small Island States. It took over a month to collect all the necessary recommendations, certificates from offices and courts, and to prepare the entire documentation. The offer in its final version had over 100 pages.
What decided about the victory?
The offers were assessed in terms of content and price. Because OECS has never used any business simulations before, the most important element of the offer was the implementation concept. In this stage, we had to describe our simulations in detail, explain how the implementation process will look like and what effects it will bring. We also had to show our experience, which is a guarantee of the quality of our work. For this part, the participants could get as much as 80% of all points. And it was in this category that we significantly overtook the other simulations provider. Because after the financial offer was assessed, we found out that the low price did not decide about the victory – Revas’ offer was more expensive than the competition. So what did decide about it, was the very high score for the content assessment part. We are especially proud of this because we can say that we have not only a world-class product but also experts who are ready to take on challenges all over the world.
The contract with OECS will be stretched over 7 months. We will start by examining the needs of partners from all OECS countries, that is Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Granada, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Then we will adjust Business Simulation Games in a way to make them meet the expectations of our partners best. In the next step, we are going to conduct the training for instructors and organize a training session with a competition for 150 people. Finally, we will together develop a model of cooperation for the next few years, in order to make Revas simulations a permanent point of training for entrepreneurs in the Caribbean in the future.