National Competitions

10 Ways to Get the Most Out of Competitions

  • May 4, 2015
  • By: Tona Rowett

Once a year, Enactus students around the world have the chance to attend their country’s National Competition. Participating in one of these events has been described as exciting, exhilarating, inspiring and life changing…so how do you make the most of the experience? We asked you how you maximize your competition experience. Here are your answers!

1. Showcase your Work.

If your team has the chance to present your entrepreneurial initiatives at competition, don’t pass it up. Not only will it be a unique opportunity to share your incredible work, but it will be a chance to build visibility for your Enactus program in front of business executives and other teams, as well as an incredible public speaking experience for your presentation team. And who knows, you just might win!

2. Watch other teams’ presentations.

Learning how other teams across your country are using entrepreneurial action to improve the lives of others is not only informative but also inspiring. You’ll be challenged to look at problems and solutions in new ways and you may come up with your team’s next big idea. You’ll also realize that you are a part of something bigger than just you and your team, and that your role in the movement is important. Cheer on your peers and make them feel good about what they’ve accomplished.

3. Make new friends.

It’s not very often that you come together with like-minded individuals who share your passion from all over your country, so take advantage of it. Once those presentations are done, go up and introduce yourself to students from other teams. Ask questions about their work; congratulate them and share ideas. It can lead to great things like collaborating on future projects and lasting friendships.

4. Share your experience.

Don’t keep all this excitement to yourself – share with others the amazing time you’re having! Post pictures, quotes and thoughts on social media, using your country’s hashtag and our global event hashtag #WeAllWin. Write a blog post to capture your memories. You never know who you will inspire with your words and ideas.

5. Network, network, network.

When we asked you on social media how to best maximize your competition experience, the number one answer was network. The sweet spot of Enactus really is the network and you won’t find an event that brings together such a diverse and accomplished group of students, faculty and business leaders. Take every opportunity you have to meet these people and ask them questions. Research in advance who is attending and decide who you might like to meet, then go and find them. Bring business cards and don’t forget to follow up.

6. Spend time with your team.

This was another answer we heard a lot on social media: when you’re at the competition, be with your team. Travel together, eat together, practice together and celebrate together. Some teams are large and organized in such a way that you don’t always see each other so what a great opportunity to build stronger connections. And for smaller teams, it’s an ideal way to recognize each other and reward yourselves for your hard work.

7. Participate in all of the events.

There is so much more to a National Competition than just the competition. From career fairs to receptions, speaker sessions to panel discussions, these events are a tremendous opportunity to learn new things, challenge your perspective, make new connections and have your ideas heard. Get the schedule of events when you arrive and plan your time accordingly!

8. See the city.

For many teams, one of the highlights of attending a National Competition is traveling to a new city. Whether it’s your first visit there or you could work as a tour guide, budget time to get out of the hotel and experience your host city. Better yet, connect with a local team and ask them to show you around! You’ll leave with a new perspective and a broader world view.

9. Have fun.

This one seems a little simplistic but it’s oh so important. You worked hard all year, your team worked hard all year and you deserve the opportunity to enjoy yourself and celebrate what you and all the teams have accomplished. Dance at the Opening Ceremonies, cheer for the award winners, take selfies at registration and laugh…a lot.

10. Be inspired and celebrate.

This one may be the easiest of all to accomplish: as you watch presentations, meet new people, network with executives and share ideas with peers, you won’t be able to help being amazed at all that is happening around you and all that happened around your country to get to this point. The power of entrepreneurial action to make a positive impact is profound and you’ll be struck by how one person, when part of a global movement, has the potential to make such an important difference. Celebrate that feeling and take it home with you – you’ll find yourself coming back to the memories over and over again.

Did we miss anything? Share with us in the comments on how you get the most out of competitions.