Sixth formers from Highcrest Academy in High Wycombe triumphed after a head to head final with schools from across the county in our 2019 Big Bucks Sales Challenge held at Pinewood Studios at the end of last term.
We teamed up the seven participating schools with entrepreneurial businesses to develop essential employability skills: Amersham School, Buckinghamshire College Group, Highcrest Academy, John Colet, Sir William Ramsay School, The Buckingham School and competition runners-up, The Misbourne.
Align JV, Serious Brands, ANT Telecom, June Medical, Career Workshops and Recruitment, Verizon and Thomas International mentored the teams and provided them with real life experience of the workplace.
In the first round of the Challenge, each school ran a competition within the year group, with teams of up to six students presenting a sales pitch to sell their school to a prospective student. The winning team chosen then went to visit their supporting business and spend the day seeing for themselves what happens behind the scenes in the real world of work. In the final, it was the students’ job to now sell their supporting business to prospective young recruits as a great place to work.
Rob Evans, Careers Leader at Highcrest Academy, explained the value of the Sales Challenge: “Activities like this make a real difference for our students and the impact can be transformational. Seeing a group of students forming a supportive team and developing their skills is a very rewarding experience. I’m very proud of our students: they worked really hard and delivered an excellent presentation. Thanks to the Bucks Skills Hub for organising it and to ANT Telecom for their excellent support.”
Paul Owen, MD of Sales Talent recruitment firm and author of the best-selling book ‘Secret Skill, Hidden Career’, was keynote speaker and one of the judges: “There is no job in the world that doesn’t need sales. Sales is all about the ability to deal with people and no robot will ever replace human interaction. I was hugely impressed with the talent I witnessed at the Big Bucks Challenge and hope the students seriously think about considering sales as a career.”
Klaus Allion, Managing Director at ANT Telecommunications Ltd, added: “We’ll now use Highcrest’s presentation to attract future talent to our workplace. It’s allowed us to see our business through young people’s eyes and has been so rewarding to see the team evolve throughout the challenge.”
If you’re a business or school in Bucks and would like to get involved in next year’s Big Bucks Sales Challenge, email Marina.Jackson@btvlep.co.uk.