It will be the third year during which Program Coordinator Reggie Moss and faculty members of the Terry College identify a business in the south metro Atlanta area and develop a financial and marketing plan for it as part of their summer business classes.
Such a plan is designed for a three- to five-year period and requires the business’s approval to release its financial data, which is why some businesses hesitate to get involved, even though the data will not be released to anyone, Moss said.
In creating a sense of competition, as is common practice in the business world, students are divided into three to four teams, with two or three students on each team, creating an individual financial and marketing plan. At the end of the class period, which lasts eight weeks, the owner of the business in question chooses the plan he likes the most.
“The students do a lot of research and come up with a lot of good ideas,” said faculty member Alan Wolk, who coaches and directs students as they work on a business’s financial plan. “The students want to create something that’s credible and take pride in their work. There’s a lot of personal pride in them.”
Students also revisit businesses long after their financial and marketing plan was put in place. However, “we don’t have control of whether the business follows the plan,” said Moss.
Last summer, UGA-Griffin students examined Omni Power Clean. The company’s owner, a Harvard business graduate, was seriously considering selling the company, Moss said, but stuck with it after working with the students.
“He thought that we gave him a quality plan. He wrote letters of recommendation,” Moss said.