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Uskalla Yrittää festivals feature regional competitions that culminate in the Uskalla Yrittää final in the spring. The winners of the Best JA Company category in the Finnish finals will have the chance to represent Finland at the European Championships. The international GEN-E 2022 competition will be held in Tallinn in July.

The regional competitions are open to JA companies set up by students from comprehensive and upper secondary schools as well as from higher education institutions. The themes of the competition categories may vary regionally. Here you can find general instructions for JA companies, the categories used in the final, as well as information on the general categories, including the Best Exhibition Stand and the Best Sales Pitch.

Specific age limits apply to the Best JA Company category

The winner of the Best JA Company category must meet the age requirements, which are based directly on the criteria for the European Championships. According to the age limits

  • The competitions for comprehensive and upper secondary schools are open to students between the ages of 15 and 21.
  • The higher education competitions are open to students between the ages of 18 and 30.

The winners of the Best JA Company category will be selected from among JA companies with at least three team members. JA companies with fewer team members may participate in other categories of the Uskalla Yrittää competitions.

Depending on regional instructions and the corona situation, the events will be organized either virtual or live. We will inform each area separately.

CATEGORIES

JA companies in the regional festival semifinals will compete in the following categories. Between 1 to 12 JA companies from each region will be selected for the finals.  The amount of places will depend on how many students from that region participate in the JA Company Program. In this way, each team has an equal chance of reaching the finals. We will update the number of final seats on the regional final pages.

THE BEST JA COMPANY

The best JA companies from the semi-finals (comprehensive, upper secondary, and higher education) are awarded in the Uskalla Yrittää final.

The winner of The Best JA Company category gets to represent Finland in the Gen-E European championship competition. For this reason, to be eligible in this category, the JA-company has to have at least three members. 

In their evaluation, the judging panel will focus on the following aspects:

Business idea and model 

  • An interesting, important, and topical business idea
  • The idea has an audience, i.e. customers, and there is demand for it.
  • The company’s product/service is realized in an innovative manner.
  • The company has identified their key target groups.
  • The company is able to explain why the product/service is needed and what is the customer’s problem that the product/service solves.
  • The company has identified and employed sales and marketing channels and is able to explain why the chosen channels are used.
  • The business idea has been considered from the perspective of a potential customer and the company is able to explain the added value provided to the customer.

Goal-orientation and determination

  • The company has created a clear business plan, according to which the operation has been developed.
  • The company has set goals for itself and monitored them actively throughout the operation.

Finance

  • The company understands the key financial figures of their operation.
  • The company is able to explain the profit margin of their product/service.
  • The company recognizes the financial factors that affect the price and costs.

Team

  • The company is based on a strong and competent team (at least 3 members), who have the desire and a plan to improve their business operation.
  • The members of the team have clearly defined roles and the competence of the team is considered in the planning of their operation.

Learning and interaction

  • The members of the company are able to explain what they have learned during the operation of the JA company.
  • The company is able to explain the challenges they have faced and how they have overcome them.
  • The members of the company are better able to identify their strengths and skills.
  • The company interacts and presents itself in a convincing manner.
  • The members of the company operate in an entrepreneurial manner and demonstrate an excellent entrepreneurial attitude.

BEST BUSINESS IDEA

In some semi-finals, the JA company with the best business idea is awarded. A good business idea is based on the customers’ existing problem that requires a solution. The Best Business Idea competition seeks an idea that is topical, solves a practical problem, and is realized by a functioning company.

In their evaluation, the judging panel will focus on the following aspects:

  • The company has identified an issue and provides a solution for it.
  • The operation of the company provides additional value to the customer and the company recognizes its key target groups.
  • At the very least, the company has produced an initial version (Minimum viable product, MVP) or a prototype of their product/service.
  • The company is based on a strong and competent team, who have the desire and a plan to improve their business operation.
  • The company has calculated financial figures and how the idea could be made financially viable.

BEST PRODUCT

The best product is innovative, responds to a practical problem or is a novel way of accomplishing something. The best product is user-friendly, has a good price-quality ratio, and its design is functional. Further credit will be given if the product and its various processes consider sustainable development (social, economic, and ecological).

The judging panel will focus on the following aspects when choosing the best product:

  • The product has novelty value and provides an innovative solution to the customer’s problem.
  • The company has identified the key target groups of the product and assessed the needs of the target groups.
  • The product is user-friendly, and it has been developed in a customer-oriented manner.
  • The product has a clear and justified pricing model.
  • The commercialization of the product has been carried out well and the concept has been developed further during the operation.
  • The judging panel will give further credit to the team if their product and its processes have considered the various aspects of sustainable development.

BEST SERVICE

The best service is innovative and responds to a practical problem. The best service can also consist of a new innovation or an approach that is better than existing solutions. The qualities of the best service include functionality, reliability, price-quality ratio, and clarity from the customer’s perspective. For the company, the best service must be a profitable and clearly defined entity (price-quality ratio from the company’s perspective).

The service may also include a product, but in this case, the manufacturing costs of the product must be minor compared to the price of the service (for example, a coffee drink in a café may cost €4, most of which consists of service costs). The implementation of the service cannot be dependent on the specific skills of a single individual (such as a singer or a magician). 

  • The service has novelty value and resolves the customer’s issues identified by the company.
  • The company has identified the key target groups of the service and assessed the needs of the target groups.
  • The purchasing process of the service is clear and made simple for the customer.
  • The service has a clear and justified pricing model.
  • The commercialization of the service has been carried out well and the concept has been developed further during the operation, for example on the basis of customer feedback.
  • The service provided by the company is a clearly defined entity.
  • The judging panel will give further credit if the service considers the circular economy.

GENERAL CATEGORIES

These categories will be organized only in live events

BEST EXHIBITION STAND

The Best Exhibition Stand award is given to the JA company with the most impressive and comprehensive stand. A good exhibition stand is an entity that complements the product or service provided by the JA company.

In the festivals, each company has access to identical tables which can be dressed up according to the company’s vision and complimented by a roll-up, for example.

The Best Exhibition Stand award is given to the JA company with the most impressive and comprehensive stand. A good exhibition stand is an entity that complements the product or service provided by the JA company.

In the festivals, each company has access to identical tables which can be dressed up according to the company’s vision and complimented by a roll-up, for example.

In choosing the best exhibition stand, the judging panel will focus on the following aspects:

  • The exhibition stand is a clearly defined comprehensive entity, which includes:
    • Presentation of the products,
    • Price list,
    • The team and their outfits,
    • Graphic design.
  • The stand invites customers to come and see the company.
  • The exhibition stand supports the product or service of the company as well as its image.
  • The company is able to explain their planning for the stand; why certain things were done and how they benefit the company.

BEST SALES PITCH

The best sales pitch is a tight, well-organized package that raises the interest of the listener. During the festivals, each participating JA company is able to pitch their company on the event stage and the best pitch will be awarded.

The judging panel will evaluate the pitches using the following criteria:

  • Memorable opening and closing.
  • Well-thought-out and clear contents.
    • What is the problem solved by the company?
    • Who are the customers of the company?
    • What does the product/service cost?
    • Why is the company unique?
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