A Small Business Institute (SBI) Project: Multiple Views: Client, Students, Judges, Guidelines for Conducting an SBI Course

Kenneth J. Lacho


This paper examines a Small Business Institute (SBI) project from the perspective of the, client, students, and final examination judges. The same client was the subject of two different team projects. One team split into two factions and presented two separate reports, for a total of three projects. Students liked the real world experiences and lack of structure, although they felt not all students could handle the lack of structure. The wide background of the judges was an advantage although the scoring system needed to be improved. A clear definition of the scope of work was important. The recommendations of two of the reports were used by the client as they were practical in nature. The student-client interaction was found to be important in one case as the student’s enthusiasm and work ethnic energized the client about the project. The selection of the client and student teams is critical to a successful SBI project. We had the best of both worlds a good client and good student teams at least in two of the three cases. The article concludes with guidelines to use in teaching an SBI course, before, during, and after the project.

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