With a wealth of options out there when it comes to sharpening your business skills, Kaffeination co-founder Matthias Schmid tells us why his decision to complete a MSc in Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship at Manchester Business School paid off for him.
Having set up energy supplements company, Kaffeination, at the beginning of 2013, Matthias Schmid has had a chance to look back at the decisions he made in the run up to launching his business.
Here, he tells GrowthBusiness what motivated the decision to complete the course, what its beneficial factors were and how it has ultimately helped him get where he is today.
1) Why did you choose to study the MSc Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship course at MBS?
The unique course combined the theoretical side of innovation with the practical experience of entrepreneurship.
2) What was it about the MSc Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship Masters from MBS that gave you the information you needed to be successful in business?
The different models about how to build a business were really interesting. Even more interesting was to implement these and grow my own business.
3) What was your background before you embarked on the course at MBS?
I hold a BA in International Management and also I studied abroad in Paris and New Delhi before. Having gained international experience, I wanted to get more of that and hoped to meet many people from all over the world in the UK.
4) Are there specific skills you learned on the course that you have found to be applicable in your career in start-up business? What skills have you been able to practice that you’ve learned?
I learned to ask the right question, to test business models and to draw the right responses from the answers I got.
5) How has the course allowed you to build partnerships and successful business relationships?
The people in and around MBS helped me to build strong relationships with business leaders in the North-West. They put me in touch with the right people and experts which I needed in the early days of the start-up.
6) What would your advice be to someone who wants to become an entrepreneur? Would you recommend taking this course at MBS?
For someone who wants to become an entrepreneur, one thing is crucial – keep your eyes open for opportunities and the right people to build a team. On the MSc Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship course you meet like-minded people and thus can move your initial ideas you bring with you, or develop at MBS, forward.
7) Do you think there is a certain personality type that lends itself well to entrepreneurship?
I don’t think there is a special personality type. It is more about people who really want to change things and innovate, not being satisfied with the given situation. These are the type of people I have met in Manchester and am happy about it.
8) What would you identify as the key negatives and positives about entrepreneurship?
The negatives are the early days – you’ve got a great idea, you work hard to make your idea perfect but not many people recognise how much heart and work you put in it and just turn you down without having had a closer look at your idea. That is the point when you know: do more and convince them!
Positives are the immense satisfaction you get doing your own thing, even though sometimes the risk involved can be daunting.
9) What helped you to decide to enrol on the MSc Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship course?
Manchester as a city, I was excited to live in place where the industrial revolution has its roots and where two great football clubs are from.
10) Did the course aid you in building your idea, or was it necessary for you to have the idea before you enrolled on the course?
I came to Manchester with an initial idea to found something of my own, but at Manchester Business School I got support in strengthening the idea and making it a viable product in the end.