15
May
10

Individual Reflective Report 2010 (Presented by Jay)

<Evaluation to what extent the student’s creative and entrepreneurial capabilities were developed by the experience of business activities and how these will help to achieve the student’s career goals on completion of their course>

Kingston University MACE 2010

The Creative Economy (BSM701)

Submitted by: Jeong Soo SEO (Jay)

ABSTRACT (part 1)

Indeed, these days’ economy environment is turbulent. Most commercial products tend to be creative shape and innovative function. As a result, the majority of commercial industries are more focusing on their creativity and considering of innovation. Furthermore, because of the trend of creativity, it demonstrates that intensive competition and an overheated of economic market have become more serious than ever before. In fact, there might be fair reason to be more creative and more innovative because “innovation is vital feature in the modern economy (Parker, J 1978)”. Seriously, new rule of innovation and new form of creativity have something attractive. Furthermore, because of changing society, people desire and require more attractive nesses, amazingly, in the reality of economy, the expectation might be connected in different position. On the one hand, it means that to gain more creative experiences, users might desire more creative products from commercial industry. On the other hand, it also means that to provider more innovative products, provider has to be innovated. In this point of view, the significant relationship, which connects users with providers, is found. It means that currently, the relationship is clearer through providers’ observing problems so that users are more satisfied by the solution which is developed by providers. In these days’ education and training system, however, the creativity and innovation factors often are ignored. Because of our traditional education systems, our innate creativity is disappearing in our gene. Therefore, this report is very meaningful because it clearly showed the process which was from the beginning to the end of learning process of creativity. The repot would find the fact that to be creative, it doesn’t take long time and it is demonstrated through the history of MACE course. Therefore, this report is fairly based on personal blog which was written by reporter about experiences of business activity. Finally, the report is narrating by the time order from the beginning to the end of class.

Key words: turbulent, vital feature, creativity, education system, learning process of creativity and MACE

#1. The first implication of creativity in the first lesson:

‘What did users wear on their foot?’

This report would be begun with an implication of creativity which was first challenge about people’s shoes through an observation. In fact, the challenge was before MACE business activities to understand the methodology of observing problems and it was the preparation of the business performance as a warming-up. Particularly, the key content was observing problems which are all around in people’s life. In the challenge, a survey and questionnaire were done to find out the facts that when people buy shoes, what factors are considered. Through the survey, users’ real demands such as comfortableness, price and design could be discovered. Even though the number of collected data was insufficient at that time, at least the experience of finding was connecting observer with the importance of observation to creative activities. After that time, the experiment had affected the real business activities of Design Balance Company because members could learn that most creativity was based on defining problems through observation otherwise it might be dream or just prototype’s plan.

#2. The preparation to break a fixed idea:

‘How could you transform valuable motivation into a circle?’

Before running team business, there also was a significant experiment. In a limited time, we had to transform our valuable motivation into circles. In fact, I never concentrated on circle in my life. Furthermore, I never drew circle in a few second. However, the experiment made me understand that the creative thinking does not take long time. In addition, from that time, the meaning of circles was a valuable motivation because through the method, creative ideas could be multiple in a short time. To be honest, when I was BA fashion student in Korea, I used to be in Korean academic culture which prefers lectures and exams instead of seminars and practices. In addition, when I was fashion designer, I tended to go easy way. It meant that I preferred to design only current fashion trend rather than creative and progressive design because it easily leaded to safe way. As a result, I was losing the creative thinking at that time. According to Gerver (2010), he clearly pointed out human’s innate creativity and he identified that “most people were born with creative ability as innateness. Look at the children in their classroom. They don’t need creative encouragement to their creative activity because they already know what to do” (http://ezinearticles.com Accessed Apr 12th 2010). In addition, he also stressed that “After 30 years of teaching elementary school and 23 years of being a parent, I have long ago come to realize that the human species is born with a creative spirit that yearns to be unleashed” (Gerver, G accessed Mar 12th 2010).  However, Rawlinson (2010) strongly argued that “the young people are educated and controlled by educational systems as soon, when they grow up. As a result, they are conditioned to submerge these creative abilities within other abilities such as logical thinking” (Rawlinson, J. 1993). Through all these arguments, it clearly showed that how many time people’s creativities are limited in educational system. Overall, the significant experiment of motivated circles made me realize my weaknesses and promoted my creativity in our business activity.

#3. The differences between dream and reality:

‘Could you really compete with real commercial companies?’

The early stage of MACE journey, there was an assignment which was to find competitive companies. What we chosen to compete companies were Lidl, 99P Stores, ARGOS, TESCO and New Era Cap Company. Unfortunately, it was not considered of real business environment and the capacity of Design Balance. In fact, it was researched just simply. After that time, it was clearly examined how the reality could be far from new business starters’ dream. According to Landsberg (‘The Tao of Coaching” 2010), the reality step is one of GROW model. It defines that the importance of recognition about how far the reality away from final outcome (Accessed Apr 27th 2010). To be honest, at the beginning, I dreamed that Design Balance Company would make huge amount of profits as same as most thinkers in MACE. In addition, Design Balance Company’s capacity such as finance, production scale and strategic marketing was not considered and moreover, these were not outlined in the real environment of business. However, the real business was not just simple. Furthermore, I was just in the middle of the steps but I already would be expected the profitable goal like dream. It often becomes most serious risks because when the goal is totally different between expected plan and real outcome, new business starters can be disappointed or give up easily. For instance, if a small size enterprise does not consider its production capacity, financial scale and product delivery scheme, the small company also will not compete with gigantic size enterprises because of the inferior capacities. It significantly meant that if the company is small size, it has to focus on the gap market through innovation and creativity to avoid serious financial risks because commercial competitors already occupied in all business areas with their finance and marketing power. In particular, the running of business allowed us to realize real competitors and real gap market. Furthermore, through the business activities, it was clearly discovered that financial planning, targeting, and marketing strategy are always considered in every company’s activity. In addition, all these have to be compared on balance between expected plan and real goal. In that point of view, this course obviously provided the analysis skill and business insight step by step.

#4. The outlining real business factors through empathy:

‘What factors had to be considered for the success business?’

Most unique ideas are coming from brainstorming not just rigid planning for long time (Rawlinson, J. ‘Creative Thinking and Brainstorming’ 1993) but to be more realization, these have to combine with real business factors such as tangible objects, financial support, company’s organisation and business network. In fact, before setting business concept of team 8, these factors had to be identified by brainstorming. Therefore, group activities were suggested to define essential factors of successful business. Firstly, tangible objects had to be defined so that the real products, what we were going to produce, could be selected. Secondly, users had to be defined as company’s real customer. It also allowed setting the real target. Thirdly, company’s organisational factors such as control, management, decision making and planning were considered through the understanding of company’s inside factors. In addition, the organisational factors contained company’s rules and traditions such as regulation, copyright, employ agreement and budget. Finally, all these factors were connected with provider’s aim and users need. Therefore, through the empathy, the real business factors could be outlined.

#5. The earlier mistakes but a lack of the cognition of reality:

‘Design Balance took the risk.’

Team 8’s first plan for tangible product was cap. In fact, it would seem to be unique and progressive, if the real business environment was considered. It meant that even though the planning was progressive and the products were designed unique, the cap business couldn’t be successful because the cost of production and delivery matters weren’t considered. The mistakes were found early but unfortunately we didn’t turn back because we believed that the outsourcing company would easily produce our prototype’s product and the delivery would not take long time. In fact, it often might happen in the real business, when a company had to deal with outsourcing companies. To be honest, time schedule and production costs definitely had to be considered in business plan. Furthermore, every planning and production also had to be identified with the reality of real situation. In fact, our team couldn’t recognize all these processes. As a result, team 8 had to take risks which delayed company’s outcomes. Overall, through the business activities in MACE, it was discovered that how the recognition of reality is important and affects company’s goal.

#6. The surgery for business activities:

‘Team 8 received essential feedback’

This business curriculum examined each groups’ business activity through many competitions such as the bright ideas, dragon’s den with fake money and trade fair. In fact, all these programs promoted students’ business activities so that they could evaluate where they were and what they were doing. In particular, in the middle of the running business, there also was an operation such as surgery in business activities through the competition of dragon’s den. In fact, team 8 had to have low marks but the feedback was not just for the team 8. Possibly, it also was for me. It meant that if it was real situation, the low marks would mean a low profit in a real business. I could realize that how business world is wild and how the real business is intensive. However, through these examinations and surgery, I was more emulated and spirited because the competitions strongly motivated me. In fact, the cognition of obstacles is very important factor in creative industry whether it is by feedback or by self. Howkins (2002) clearly demonstrated that “workers in a traditional factory may have better ideas about how to run their factory…but the workers can never put their ideas into practice…the creative entrepreneurs in the creative economy use creativity” (P.129). He might point out that even though the traditional factory’s workers may have much know-how, they do not stimulate the cognition of obstacles into practice. Therefore, they can not be more creative than the entrepreneurs because the creative entrepreneurs frequently recognize obstacles than the workers. In fact, there are many evidences which encouraged positive business in my mind through the course and I recalled past time as an article on personal blog as following:

“I am thinking that we are on the middle of this journey of challenge, not just in the end of the journey. If we do well without any mistakes, it will be said that just lucky…I like this class with unlimited thinking. It exactly reminded me of that if I try to tern my head to different way, I will see different something…I want to develop new idea, unlimited thinking and innovation. I will gain, if I do not give up” (source from personal blog ‘sui0007’).

#7. Moving forward to tangible products:

‘It is time for producing!’

“Creativity on its own has no economic value. It needs to take shape to be embodied in a tradable product, if it is to accrue commercial value” (howkins, J ‘From mind to market’ 2002).

The business activity was planned on observing problems at first. After then it moved to produce prototype. Overall, it was the time for producing real tangible products. Through these experiences, students might learn about how to company’s products are designed and developed in the specific production process. In addition, in the process, it also included materials, unique designs and the prime cost. Particularly, we chose scarf as the main product. In fact, the meaning of scarf might be ordinary in people’s life. However, the ordinaries were remarkably transformed into specialties. It was the power of creativity because the creative thinking was vitally spirited in our narrow mind and moreover, it promoted more creative designing even it was prototype. Overall, our business activity created the real tangible products which were valuable to trade. It was not only tangible products. It was our outcome of creative effort because only our team chose real accessory product for the business and we finally made real profit by ourselves.

#8. Real role-playing in team 8:

‘What were your tasks and what had you learnt?’

Each role of business activity was determined. In fact, the role-playing was effective strength in the class because it allowed division of works by each expert, but unfortunately, out team was consisted of only three members. More seriously, one of members changed of this course. At that time, I strongly realized that “people’ background will not be important, when workers have their passionate interest” (Hargadon, A. Sutton, R. 2000 P.74) because even though we were only two, we were more passionate in the tasks. However, what I learnt after that time was that “innovative companies prefer to share and hire people who are varied skills, interests and backgrounds” (Hargadon, A. Sutton, R. 2000). After several months, our team was co-operated with team 9. It showed that the strengths were multiple, but when the organisation was efficiently controlled. As a product designer, the role was enjoyable to me because I was immersed in attractiveness of creativity through the activity. Particularly, it helped me to enable to create unconventional idea. In addition, it allowed me to be a creative thinker. Most of all, it opened my innate gene of creativity because I used to be inertial educational system. Overall, humbly I had contributed team’s all new ideas in the business process from the beginning to the end. It also made me be confident.

#9. The reflection of my moment:

‘What did you feel?’

I was sensitive in every objects even micro thing. Coffee and the rest of mind were my favorite factors. Wherever I was, my blog and team business was considered and thought with the taking my camera everywhere as the sensitivity. As much as possible I loved this course. Particularly, it made me recognize that even though I am dreaming for the future, the course clearly notify the right tract for the career. It (source from personal blog ‘sui0007’) was recalled in the personal blog as following:

“…to make scarves in Knight park fashion studio. Suddenly, I recalled something in the studio. It was the story of 10 years ago, when I practiced on garment designing at a Korea University in BA. I realized that it was difficult to be designer in urban fashion wear at that time because I thought that there was no vision. So I had to turn in fashion marketing. However, I realized again. When I open my eyes widely and creatively, I can see the vision, wherever it is. Now, it is clearer then before”.

#10. The last trade fair and the first open market:

‘How were you confident?’

In the last trade fair, our team clearly realized that when the creativity is in a lack of strong strengths, it is not attractive, but more important factor was that the creativity has to be right place so that it shines in its strengths. It meant that the last trade fair made me be disappointed because my products were not attracted by users, but when these were different place where was desired creative products by users as the one day open market, the products sufficiently showed its uniqueness. Furthermore, it was strongly stressed that there is exact process of creativity from invention to test market. In the stage of test market, exactly we were. Humbly, if the opportunity of selling was more often and tradable products were made more, the sales were seriously promoted more because I saw the real possibility of creative market in the open market. It was demonstrated that functionality and uniqueness are more competitive. Furthermore, users were attracted by the creative functions in the campus market. These (source from personal blog ‘sui0007’) were recalled in the personal blog as following:

It would be not necessary to excessively describe the lack of effective facilities because the outcomes were absolutely amazing and moreover, the scene of yesterday was a sensation (If people strongly believe that nothing is impossible, the motivation must lead positive way and at least we held it yesterday). We efficiently demonstrated our business with unique products…Furthermore, we didn’t stop to introduce MACE business projects to audiences. Most staffs and students, particularly, social and science faculty students watched our promotion. At least it was more than 500 people…Amazingly, we never stopped and a guerrilla promotion was carried out because if providers didn’t interrupt to demonstrate new products to audience, the users would lose an opportunity to recognize new products. Therefore, I went out with scarves and Jong-Hwa followed to help. We clearly introduced Company’s aim, products’ strategy in all around of campus. People wanted to know more about our project and it led selling products.  Furthermore, Yang and Monessa continually promoted our products and it was effective as well. Overall, we carried out many things. Our Company made real profits. It was significant meaning. In other words, the profits were contributed by members own efforts and it was real situation like in fashion markets. Moreover, it was not by pre-order methods. In addition, many people recognized our Company’s activities. Particularly, one of FADA faculty’s students tried to investigate how to design and produce our brand logo and labels because he had produced T-shirts in his business and wanted to apply in his products. Furthermore, we took all customers’ pictures with sold scarves and we got their E-mail because we are planning for sending to them as a customer service (Jong-hwa, thanks for planning! and good sense). Finally, I undoubtedly identified that Design Balance Company had focused on right target and competitive products. Well done guys!”

THE AMAZING SECRET FOR THE FUTURE (part 2)

Honestly, only macers know what we had learnt through the course. The course would be processed in the amazing environment which was reasonable and creative, but exactly tight. I enjoyed and competed, not as a competitor, but as a fellow. We were learning together and we were stimulated by peers. Sometimes, I used to miss the focus and sometimes, the difficult key factors were on me, but the most important aspect was the experiences of real feasibility. Through these learning processes, we were observed by self and we were enabled to plan for the future’s career imagery. After the assessment of personal creative capacity, we could prepare the long-terms strategic goal. In fact, my dream (source from personal blog ‘sui0007’) was expressed in the blog:

“I often think about my future in five years. What will I be and what will I do? But it also often goes different way from my original plan to accidental plan. 10 years ago, I couldn’t like fashion designing because of guy. I usually though that fashion design is for woman’s job. In addition, I though that women always are better than men in fashion. One day, however, I was walking the way of fashion designing. It was disaster because my original dream was car designing. I am thinking about my future again. It also not clear but I believe that if I open my eyes in innovation and avoid negative factors, I will go to my unique way, even thought the way is not car designing. I have a plan. I would like to be branding manager. Now, it is my real dream and I am preparing that. That is why, I am studying in MACE. My creative economy class of 15th January, Corrine thanks for reminding me!”

In fact, my dream was car designing, but it seems to be not realized. After several years the dream was totally turned over and it became a branding manager. Particularly, this course gave me many presents. Firstly, it was the recovering of confident. Secondly, it would be the branding experiences which allowed me to design brand image and label as my dream career. Finally, it showed the intensive creative market where we have to be challenge after graduation. However, as a pretend business company in the class, there were always existing obstacles such as conflicting, laziness, trial and error. In fact, undoubtedly it should be found in real business environment. In the meantime, we had been being strong and embracing each other. Nowadays, there are many alumni who are rack of creativity and innovation in the world. This year’ macers were clearly recognized that when they realize the cognition of creativity and when they break the old traditional mind, finally they can reach the essence of creativity and innovation’s power. It was stimulated in our creative skins. Particularly, I could recall that “if you are late in this class, you will have to think about how much you paid for this course” (Beaumont, C. source from the Creative Economy lecture 2009). It was the reality in the intensive economy. If we don’t take, we must not have. In a word, even though, the curriculum is amazing, if I don’t take the challenge, the curriculum will be meaningless because I am not in there. In particular, this course contained the strength that visual learning sources as the business company’s seminar and advertising about creativity were appropriately used in the class. Through these, we recognized where we are and what is real business environment. Furthermore, through the managing and creating of blog, personal progress was confirmed. In addition, it allowed of sharing of useful information and moreover, the outcomes were compared by self. Furthermore, as a coaching step of GROW model, each process of learning was assessed by each presentations such as Dragon’ Den With fake money, trade faire and Bright Ideas. Overall, the feedback was communicated with tutor. Now, I feel free and am satisfied. Indeed I will miss this class in my life forever.

Reference

Beaumont, C. (2009) ‘the Creative Economy’ source from first lecture in the class Sep 2009

Clayton, M. Overdorf, M (2001) Harvard Business Review on Innovation ‘Meeting the Challenge of Disruptive Change’ Harvard Business school Publishing, Boston, MA 02163. USA.

Gerver, G. (2010) ‘Improve Creativity in Your Organization’ Retrieved Mar11, 2010 from http://ezinearticles.com/?Creativity—Who-Doesnt-Have-a-Creative-Bone-in-Their-Body?-No-One&id=3881174

Hargadon, A. Sutton, R. (2000) Harvard Business Review on Innovation ‘Building an Innovation Factory’ P.74. Harvard Business school Publishing, Boston, MA 02163. USA.

Howkins, J. (2002) The Creative Economy ‘From mind to market’ p.17 Penguin Books Ltd, 80 Strand, London. WC2R ORL, England.

Howkins, J. (2002) The Creative Economy ‘how people make money from ideas’ p.129. Penguin Books Ltd, 80 Strand, London. WC2R ORL, England.

Kim, C. Mauborgne, R. (2001) Harvard Business Review on Innovation ‘Creating New Market Space’ Harvard Business school Publishing, Boston, MA 02163. USA.

Kim, C. Mauborgne, R. (2001) Harvard Business Review on Innovation ‘a Winning Business Idea When You See One’ Harvard Business school Publishing, Boston, MA 02163. USA.

Landsberg, M. (2010) ‘The Tao of Coaching: Boost Your Effectiveness at Work by Inspiring and Developing Those Around You’ Retrieved Apr27, 2010 from http://www.1000ventures.com/business_guide/crosscuttings/coaching_grow.html

Parker, J. (1978) ‘the Economics of Innovation’ (2nd). Longman Inc. New York.

Rawlinson, J. (1993) ‘Creative Thinking and Brainstorming’ Gower Publishing Company Ltd. Gower House, Croft Road, Aldershot, Haunts. GU11 3HR. England.

Seo, J. (2010) Sui0007. Retrieved Apr20, 2010 from http://blogs.kingston.ac.uk/maceteams/

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27
Apr
10

Penrhyn Road campus was occupied by unique scarves

 

‘Yesterday, I could say that it is absolutely Design Balance Company’s day’

Yesterday, after Suzee’s confirmation from student union, we arrived in Penrhyn Road Kingston University campus. In fact, we planned for one day open market in campus and contacted KU organizer but there was nothing such as table, chairs and any facilities to sell Company’s scarves. However, we set our scarves in front of student canteen with promotional products such as commercial hair bands, bags and chips for customers. To be sure, Company’s banner was hung on information desk and business cards were also prepared.

It would be not necessary to excessively describe the lack of effective facilities because the outcomes were absolutely amazing and moreover, the scene of yesterday was a sensation (If people strongly believe that nothing is impossible, the motivation must lead positive way and at least we held it yesterday). We efficiently demonstrated our business with unique products. It included how to wear scarf lovely and what is Company’s design strategy in products. Furthermore, we didn’t stop to introduce MACE business projects to audiences. Most staffs and student, particularly, social and science faculty students watched our promotion. At least it was more than 500 people. In addition, module leader Mrs. Amanda, who lectured on Contemporary Issue in the Creative Economy last semester, was impressed our activity and cheered us.

Amazingly, we never stopped and a guerrilla promotion was carried out because if providers didn’t interrupt to demonstrate new products to audience, the users would lose an opportunity to recognize new products. Therefore, I went out with scarves and Jong-Hwa followed to help. We clearly introduced Company’s aim, products’ strategy in all around of campus. people wanted to know more about our project and it led selling products.  Furthermore, Yang and Monessa continually promoted our products and it was effective as well.

Overall, we carried out many things. Our Company made real profits. It was significant meaning. In other words, the profits were contributed by members own efforts and it was real situation like in fashion markets. Moreover, it was not by pre-order methods. In addition, many people recognized our Company’s activities. Particularly, one of FADA faculty’s students tried to investigate how to design and produce our brand logo and labels because he had produced T-shirts in his business and wanted to apply in his products. Furthermore, we took all customers’ pictures with sold scarves and we got their E-mail because we are planning for sending to them as a customer service (Jong-hwa, thanks for planning! and good sense). Finally, I undoubtedly identified that Design Balance Company had focused on right target and competitive products. Well done guys!

27
Apr
10

Final version advertisement of Design Balance

 

Really, really and really final version advertisement of Design Balance

27
Apr
10

Behind story of commercial advertisement

Mainly, the advertisement was aimed to help audiences’ understanding and demonstrate about our brand’s design strategy. In fact, the key factors were essentially focused on uniqueness and functionality of scarf. For these several reasons, the main concept of advertisement was acted by many people and they tried to demonstrate the problem stage such as product keeping, ordinary design and simple function.   

Our target market was Kingston University students. Therefore, the age of actor and actress was from 20 to 25 years old. They are also studying at different Universities and they suggested their opinion about advertising. It means that the advertisement was considered by real audiences’ feedback and advisory.

Many people acted more than ten in different concepts. It took around 6 hours in IKEA where locates in Croydon branch. There was very useful because it allowed advertisement to be made as many as different show cases. The people strongly stressed that uniqueness and functionality are strengths in fashion products. In addition, they also agreed that small fashion accessories such as scarf and mittens might be easily losing from last season. Finally, in the last scene of advertisement, a girl was trying to find her scarf from drawers. It shows the losing of scarf. In fact, it was an episode which is connected to people’s real problem stage and it was a part of main advertisement.

25
Apr
10

Design Balance demo AD

Design Balance demo AD 24/04/2010

20
Apr
10

The scene of last fair trade

 

You are look like a model!

Design Balance have participated all fair trades. In the last event, even though, there was no profit, we received many positive opinions from audiences and moreover the preparation was improved and was more attractive than first fair trade because members were physically increased.  ;>

20
Apr
10

Why is it important now?

 

Regarding ‘The Open Book of Social Innovation’

During the preparation for the end of my MACE voyage, ‘the open book of social innovation’ is quiet meaningful to me. The article was read nearly at the end of my term through an assignment but it outlined many parts of my journey in MACE. In a word, what I mean is that main key contents such as social innovation, creative thinking, business process and different thinking were introduced in the article and these have been exactly related with our business in MACE. In addition, these contents contained specific factors which are connected with innovation such as recognising problems and solution stage. For instance, someone said that in the article “I am too short to grab a handle in the subway. I need a lower handle”. For physical differences of people, the handles in the tube are different lengths in South Korea (Murray, R. Mulgan, G. Mar, 2010. ‘The Open Book of Social Innovationp.40). This is one of the ideas that was recognized the problem. Particularly, it is more explained in the content which is ‘recognising problems’ about the importance of defining problems (p. 17). It was written that ‘Problems need to be recognised. Too often they are hidden, or marginalised…Much research is about bringing problems to light. A lot of politics is about getting problems.’ (Murray, R. Mulgan, G. Mar, 2010. p.17)

Recently, it is reminding me of the specific factors in the final stage of our business and I am trying to think of our team in the principles of business. To be honest, we might not show that our brand also has clear recognising problems and the solution in the advertising. That was why we had to focus on products rather than advertising. We were missing that the key points are problems and providing solutions through business. Anyway, on the final presentation, we must work on it and we will fulfil our weaknesses into strengths.

http://www.nesta.org.uk/library/documents/Social_Innovator_020310.pdf