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Polish Youth Showing Innovation in Just Two Minutes

Brenden Chaney @brendenchaney


Nov 12, 2010


As one of the honorary committee members of Global Entrepreneurship Week in Poland, Richard Lucas said, “the idea of an Elevator Pitch competition is not new...” he continued, “As an entrepreneur who has had more business failures than successes I know that [putting together] a good business plan is a huge challenge (even with 400 employees, 6 companies, and 30 years of experience). We thought that an elevator pitch competition for school kids would give them the chance to show initiative, creativity, and motivation, without being held back by the constraint of making a robust business plan a requirement.”

That is how the My Two Minutes competition started in Poland for Global Entrepreneurship Week. One of many other amazing activities coming from Poland this year, My Two Minutes, stands out as one of the most innovative pilot projects in Poland. I will let Richard continue with his explanation of the competition as his words can do it more justice than mine:

We thought that if we used a free social networking tool we could reach a large number of young people at very low cost.

In 2009 more than 53000 school children joined the Polish GEW Social Networking group on Nasza Klasa , a popular social network in Poland. This showed how attractive entrepreneurship can be to Polish young people. Many adults think that school kids are "too young."

In May 2010 we launched the idea of a two minute elevator pitch competition on European Small Medium Sized Enterprise day at the Krakow Technology Park. The local education authority, Kuratorium Oświaty w Krakowie, gave the project its support . The National Bank of Poland and the Krakow Technology Park sponsored prizes. The Regional Government of South Poland started supporting Global Entrepreneurship Week. Business executives from Warsaw and Krakow agreed to be judges.

This was a pilot project. We didn't know how teachers and school children would react.

The first entry, (in Polish) starts with a horrific car crash; but then presents a very reasonable business idea of providing full range of services that are needed when a person dies. We wondered what was to follow.

The judges were delighted to receive a series of compelling ideas on the Youtube channel created by Krakow Technology Park for the competition. 11 of which have gone through the final being held next week.

Three of them are in English (which was not a requirement) but which means that the whole world can admire the entrepreneurial spirit alive and well in Krakow Poland:

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Polish wine

We can and should be proud of the spirit of enterprise alive among Polish teenagers