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On November the 28th, it ended one of the best weeks of my personal and academic life so far: the Business Week Setúbal 2016, which was entirely dedicated to enterpreneurship. The last couple of days were fueled by all the students' great desire to be an entrepreneur in the Tourism and Hospitality field.
The Business Week is a five-day activity and in the past week it took place at my School. In this activity were involved five different international schools* from the Business Administration field. The students enrolled in this activity were arranged into teams and their main goal was to produce a business plan. In the end of the whole creative and strategic process -- which began with the brainstorming task and went to the creation/how the students would construct the proper business, since it had its origins in an original and an innovative idea. The criterium was that this new business should not exist in the students' home countries -- then, all ideias would be classified by a juri, composed by professors involved in the Business Week. On the second day, we got to visit, namely, Quinta do Alcube and Biovilla.
The week's final theme was "work hard, play harder", I would say. We had the opportunity to attend a gala dinner at Escola de Hotelaria e Turismo de Setúbal. English was the official language used to communicate with each another.
My role throughout this whole past week was, for me, a real life opportunity to grow as a person. I really hope that the other ones who participated in the Business Week feel the same way. The job was a tutoring one. As a tutor, I had to make sure that the activities were done in their proper time, along with the supervision of a responsible Professor (in this case it was Professor Teresa Costa and her team). I also had to help students who had questions or to help them clarifying the entrepreneur process that the organizing team wanted them to follow (ideas creation; name and logotype choosing; business plan construction). I have a vision about this job: a great tutor is the one that, even though he/she follows the instructions their Professors tell him/her, he/she will challenge the students for them to be better in whatever they are doing, just because the tutor really has to believe -- to the core, actually -- that the best of each and every team member is what is necessary to bring the work to a higher level; The tutor should walk beside the student he/she is helping, even though looking externally at the emerging problem; And, above it all he/she should really integrate, individually, each participant on the programmed and non-programmed activities (in an unconditional way, obviously). I guess this was my main goal throughout the whole week and I really think I succeeded on that.
I think this perspective-changing experience was excellent to destroy limiting beliefs (the link is written in Portuguese) that I once had; it was good to develop skills and strategic thinking; improve our English communication. And, not less important, we had the opportunity to exchange ideas and perspectives about the differences of Management problems analysis.
I have to make public the following acknowlegement note, by writing here a public statement: I am very thankful for the opportunity of being part of this amazing experience as a tutor. You could tell that it was important for the organizing team that all the students' needs were satisfied and that the whole week was the best as it could possibly be. I owe that, mainly, to Professor Teresa Costa -- who was responsible for all the planning -- for her excellence in making the preparation, which was made to the tiniest detail. I really hope that this week has excedeed all your expectations, as it exceeded mine. Thank you very much for everything.
I have a special thanks that goes to all the foreign Professors who visited us: I am very grateful for the fact that you made us feel like fundamental parts of the project.
To my colleagues, Portuguese and foreign, I hope that you will have a very lucky path ahead of you and I want to thank you for your good mood during the week and know that I was delighted to see how emotionally intelligent you all were in your teams. I am certain that factor will be a plus on your professional journey. I hope to see you again in the future!
I will leave you with some opinions about my performance on this job and also some pictures that we took throughout the week.
Diogo's performance during the Business Week activity was excellent. His enthusiasm, availability and proactivity were remarkable.
Diogo is a young man who is ready to embrace new projects, he is a good colleague and a great student with a very assertive behaviour which helps him to answer new challanges.
Responsible, cheerful, well-trained Diogo had a performance that left me very happy with the choice I made when I chose him to be a tutor. He fulfilled my expectations. [translated from Portuguese]
Teresa Costa, Professor (organizer), Portugal
Diogo is an excellent professional and the proof for that is the fact that some German students thought he was one of our Professors. I think it is important to highlight that Diogo has an incredible capacity to adapt himself to the situations and take a leadership position... yes leadership. Diogo is the first to get ready and say "lets do it". His good mood, his way of manage his own emotions and his good energy was crucial for us, because it turned out to be our safe harbour.
This week tested our limits: we had to manage our emotions and step out of our comfort zone and, when things got tough, I recall Diogo as being a calm and kind person. These characteristics of his helped us to go on. [translated from Portuguese]
Sara Almeida, team leader, Portugal
You talked on a very professional level. You knew alot and when we talked about my personal project you showed interest, so you wanted to learn something from me aswell. That shows that you are eager to learn new things. You were walking around and trying to help other teams, which shows that you knew what you were doing. I want to thank you for everything. I am happy that I had this experience.
Aleksandar Patkovic, Netherlands
Diogo's performance as a tutor on the Business Week was remarkable! To be honest, I think the organizing team could have not chosen a better person for the position. Diogo was always ready to help in whichever was needed and we took a big advantage from that. He claryfied all our doubts, guided us through the project's phases, and so on... I can also say that the tutor-group interaction was excellent. It is not everyday that you find such a dynamic and interactive tutor. It was an enourmous pleasure to work with him and lucky are the ones who will get the opportunity to work with him in the future. [translated from Portuguese]
Catarina Alexandra, Portugal
Country Picnic - Moment when you can get to know each other and enjoy all the sweet treats from the different countries.
All students were ready to begin that day's entrepreneurship activities.
The full group in a visit to Quinta do Alcube.
Here, Sara was with me at the entrance of the Gala Dinner. She is my friend, course colleague, she is one of the people I have the luck to have on my peer group and, in this activity, she was one of the excellent team leaders.
In this picture, you can see the students and the Professors on the last day of the Business Week. Professor Teresa, the event's organizer, is on the front row's center.
This article was not writen on request from the School's management board.
*. Hochschule Kaiserslautern University of Applied Sciences (Germany), UC Leuven VZW - Management Technology (Belgium), a IUT de Saint-Denis (France), Vysoká škola polytechnická Jihlava (Czech Republic), Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences (Nederland), Escola Superior de Ciências Empresariais (Portugal).