“Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment, full effort is full victory.” This quote, by Mahatma Gandhi, would fit perfectly to Enactus, the Central Club of UOS. This club can be unfamiliar to some students and often mistaken as demanding. However, the more you become aware of this club the more you will be fascinated by it. Enactus is an invented word from blending "entrepreneurial," "action," and "us." The club is a community of entrepreneurs that aims to practice entrepreneurship to grow as students and supervisors who change the lives and make the world a better and sustainable place. It is nonprofit organization which starts from America. 39 countries are participating, and 30 universities are taking part in Korea. Enactus UOS is just a 5-year-old, still insufficient than those of other universities. Still, it also means it has the potential to be developed. How about taking more interest in them and joining their growth?
What does Enactus do?
Many people mistake Enactus for a mere volunteer club. In fact, this club does more than you imagine. It helps a neglected class of people to gain more financial stability than before by introducing a management system. It institutes a business model, makes process, and decides on target audience. Before jumping to the business, they try to build a closer relationship with target audience to become better acquainted. The target audience can be individuals or a community of people, such as minor traditional markets. What is common is that their livelihoods greatly depend on their daily work. Therefore, it is Enactus’ highest priority to show that they are earnest and trustworthy in doing their jobs to convince the target audience. To show it to them, Enactus takes time to increase the level of intimacy and trust. After this step, the project starts officially. Their ultimate objects are two: One is for the target audience, inculcating the ability to self-support by practicing a project during which the targets improve the quality of life and the standard of living. The other is for students of Enactus, making them grow into business leaders who have a sense of social responsibility.
Three Projects in Progress
First and foremost, “Siggeul-Bookjeok” is the project that increases moving population and profitability by creating differentiated competitiveness. According to Seo In-ji, she could realize power and importance of lasting relationships with the target audience. The owner of HanWoori Bookstore* gave a tumble for the club and contents of its proceeding project, so they could start the plan quickly. They together focused on marketing first: Making leaflets which include explanation about the bookstore, painting murals on the walls of the stores, and recently holding a second-hand book sale in front of the Student Hall. Also, they constructed an online means of advertisement on blogs and Facebook. These activities, not only increased the level of intimacy with the target audience, but also fundamentally prepared the grounds to create cultural programs in the future. Concrete examples of cultural programs are lectures, Emotional Box, and Worry Dolls**. Last May, a special lecture was held on self-introduction. Specifically, it was about effective communication achieved by introducing oneself and telling good anecdotes. Emotional Box was also installed so that visitors can put stories of their troubles on a note in the box, and other guests append tips or comments.
Worry Dolls were also arranged on one side of the store which attracted customers’ interests. Above all, they try to run off various cultural events to show that this project has infinite possibilities to advance. As a result of their efforts, at the annual National Competition***, several judges showed interests in our university’s project.
“Entree” is another project whose target audience is people with developmental disabilities. This project’s objective is those people’s self-actualization and pursuit of happiness through continuously providing jobs at companies with corporate social responsibility such as “Beautiful Hyerim,” a corporation of Bucheon Hyerim School. At the beginning, this social corporation’s occupation was only disinfection business. In order to vitalize the existing disinfection business, members of Enactus with Beautiful Hyerim endeavored to improve the recognition by making UCC, offering Safe Stickers, and advertising through media.
Also, following the school’s request that it is hard to create a sustainable process with just disinfections services which has many rivals, Enactus suggested a maintainable business model. Beautiful Hyerim thus adopted cleaning, landscaping, and assembling for new lines of business. Particularly, the landscaping, a plan called Plantree was implanted; the disabled garden the plants personally and design the products with calligraphy. This way of discovering potential of the disabled allows them to develop autonomy to stand on their own. Last but not least, “Soom” seeks management innovation in a traditional market.
The main purposes are salespeople’s financial independence and improving the quality of life. Major customers extended mainly from the middle-aged to the youth in twenties. Different from established traditional markets, Dapsimni Hyundae Market also runs an online shopping mall, MT Mall****. A revenue model was formed with MT Mall as the center which delivers packaged necessities for membership trainings (MT) with market goods. It offers service with relatively low prices and good quality to university students. Based on this, profitable models branched out more than before into festival packages and freshmen orientation packages, and also marketing expansions were made, as a result, sales have been up. Even now, they are continuing their work to expect positive results consistently.
It publicized itself by being featured in the press often and making contracts with universities. The future plan of Enactus is to integrate MT Mall and Alpine Club Mall (also a mall made by salespeople) homepage and to manage it successfully. As the final stage, Enactus will transfer all rights after completing operation and management education.
What Virtue Should We Have?
Seo said she does not expect much from new memebrs because they, just like herself, are just undergraduates. “But I dare say if there is a virtue we need, and it should be acting power as entrants. In particular, our club is not just a group that studies theories, but one that takes actions. Taking our activity for an example, there are cases when we need to seek support from companies to proceed a project. An executive ability is necessary in this situation.
In fact, in Gachon University, they call almost 100 companies up and succeeded in finding an aid. Also, we want you to have a strong sense of responsibility. We do not want you to quit suddenly because the projects that we work on can be what the target audience desperately needs,” she added.
What can We Earn from Here?
Despite the cognition that Enactus is tough, you can gain more than diligence. If you are majoring in Business Administration, it can be a chance to apply theories you have learned only from a book to real life. If you are not, you can still experience related businesses indirectly. In case of Seo, she made a project proposal of “Siggeul- Bookjeok” before becoming the leader of the club. Inside the process to execute project, she said she could learn to build a concrete relationship with a person.
“I was impressed by the owner of HanWoori Bookstore. A target audience of “Siggeul-Bookjeok,” was really kind to Enactus. He even took care of our meals and openly trusted us with the store. Another experience I treasure was when we participated in the Enactus National Competition. The team leader of Ridibooks, who was the first generation Enactus member of Sungkyunkwan University, showed interest in our bookstore project. He advised us on the right track for bookstores to take in the future and difficulties as the leader of Enactus.”
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Enactus is an earnest club where you earn as much as you worked. Your fears that it would be backbreaking may come from ignorance and inexperience. If you open the door of Enactus, they will welcome you with joy. In Enactus, with great responsibility comes both great experience and people. If you want to show care and support for society, joining Enactus as a start is a good idea.
Lee Sang-yeop Junior Reporter
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