Dafferns Mindshop Excellence Programme

Dafferns advise clients in areas of strategy and change with the expertise of our dedicated team. Once a year we open up the doors to a group of post 16 students and train them to be young consultants on the Dafferns Mindshop Excellence programme.

Run in conjunction with President Kennedy School in Coventry, the Excellence programme fast tracks the development of their young minds through a one week employer hosted work experience program aimed at fostering skills such as team work and self-confidence. Acting as company ‘executives’ for the week, students are given an issue by the host company and using powerful problem solving tools, find solutions to the issue as a team.

This work experience program is aimed at groups of 4-7 Year 12 students under normal Work Experience arrangements.

On the first day, students are trained by a Mindshop Facilitator in several Mindshop tools. At the end of Day one the Group is given a real issue related to the Host Organisation’s needs.

For the following three days, students work on solving the problem by applying the Mindshop tools developed during Day one:

  • Data gathering
  • Brainstorming
  • Mind Mapping
  • Goal Setting
  • Flow Charting

The Mindshop Facilitator and staff from the Host Organisation provide regular monitoring and mentoring.

The highlight of the week is the Presentation, which the students give to the management of the Host Organisation on the last afternoon. The Group presents and discusses their solutions to the problem. In many cases the Host Organisation’s have adopted the group’s recommendations. A school representative is expected to attend. Family members and school representatives are warmly invited to attend the presentation on the last day.

In 2015 our client Burbidge, a manufacturer of high quality kitchen doors and furniture based in Canley, Coventry, acted as host organisation for our team of students.

They set the students the problem of:

  • How to increase awareness of the Burbidge brand to customers using social media?
  • How to reach the end user buying the Burbidge product using social media and driving them to the Burbidge website?
  • How to create loyalty amongst the dealership base using social media?

Kathryn Rawlins, Leader of Careers , President Kennedy School

“The Dafferns Mindshop Excellence programme gave our students so many valuable, intrinsic skills that it is hard to measure the benefits they gained through their participation. 

Learning about how to work in a team and allocating roles meant that they had an understanding of their own and others strengths, which by the end of the programme was definitely something the students took away and used when looking at future progression. Seeing our students progress to communicating ideas effectively and developing their confidence in speaking to the employer about the Business and about the task, felt extremely natural and the students grew from being hesitant about the process to running daily meetings and updating the host company. They used their academic skills such as researching and analysing data.  The work and passion they had put into the end presentation demonstrated they had a real willingness to support the employer with the real life problem they had tackled and the students understood that character plays an important part of being in a workplace setting. Being present at the final presentation was truly a “moment” as I watched as our students present to Board Directors and the sense of pride that I and parents felt was huge.  We look forward to more of our students taking part in the Dafferns MindShop Excellence programme so that they can gain these wonderful skills and grow into happy successful adults.”

We are currently in the process of preparing for our 2016 programme which runs from 11-15 July 2016 and are excited to be working with Kite Packaging, based in Tile Hill, Coventry who have agreed to act as our host company; and a group of 6 year 12 students from President Kennedy School.