Instagram and other social media posts can create a glamorous image of entrepreneurship. However, teaching how to run a business can sometimes feel boring.

Learning how to organize a pitch contest is a great way to get students interested in entrepreneurship and get the word out about their potential businesses. This type of competition also helps students become more comfortable with publicly talking about their business ideas.

Here are 3 easy ways to organize a pitch competition for students.

1. Set a date for your pitch contest.

Grab your calendar after you decide to host a pitch contest for young people. Your pitch competition should be a standalone event.

The event can be preceded by a short series of lessons for students about pitching a business. For example, the first lesson could define pitching a business and what to include in a pitch. The next lesson could be a practice session for your students. You could then end this series with the third lesson being the actual pitch competition.

2. Decide how to judge a pitch contest.

Set some simple guidelines for comparing your students’ pitches and share these guidelines with your students. This can help them have a better idea of what potential customers, business partners, and investors look for when they consider supporting a business.

Consider including these guidelines for evaluating pitches:

  • Market opportunity
  • How a problem is solved with the business’ service/product
  • Explanation of the service/product
  • Presentation style and skills
  • Expected sales or return on investment

3. Consider offering prizes.

You could offer one or multiple prizes — the simplest award structure would be 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place. Cash prizes and gift cards are popular ideas.

You could also raise money from local nonprofits and/or businesses to provide prizes. Other prize idea would be investing a certain amount of money into the business with the winning pitch.

Or you can help pay for or provide some supplies for the winning idea. Again, local nonprofits and businesses can help pay for an initial investment and/or supplies.

Final Thoughts on How to Organize a Pitch Contest

Hosting a pitch contest is a great opportunity for your students to learn and grow. Use these 3 steps when organizing a competition:

  • Set a date for the contest.
  • Decide how to judge a pitch contest.
  • Consider offering prizes for winning pitches.

A pitch competition can build students’ confidence as well as give them lifelong skills including communication and presentation.

Photo by Jason Goodman on Unsplash

Are you a teacher or parent that wants to get started with teaching entrepreneurship to your students? Check out Business Innovation Journey, our entrepreneurship program

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