Retail Entrepreneurship Simulation
Entrepreneur challenges students to manage the details of a start-up retail clothing store.
Entrepreneur is designed for classes in entrepreneurship, introduction to small business management, and retailing. Students learn about the issues that face a start-up business and how to manage the difficult first 3 years of a business. They will learn about basic management issues, operations, marketing, and finance in the context of a retail clothing store. Decisions include product line, pricing, advertising, sales, promotion, staffing, and inventory management.
Groups of 2-4 students take the role of running the operations of a specialty retail clothing store for 12 quarters. The new management team will choose a location and name for their store and then begin to manage the on-going operations. As the simulation progresses, ethical, environmental, and management dilemmas will challenge students and stimulate class discussions. As students continue in Entrepreneur, they will appreciate the importance of accounting information provided by key financial statements (income statement, balance sheet, cash and inventory analysis), in addition to environmental reporting (including sales, pricing, and promotion reports).
To read the full copy of the case for the simulation, request a Faculty ID here!
Also available with Entrepreneur is a set of "incidents" (mini-cases) that occur one per period, thus challenging students to consider a variety of issues related to running a business. These incidents cover the following topics (and corresponding functional areas):
- Security Devices (operations) Students have the opportunity to select a security system for the store.
- A Ethical Dilemma (ethics) A local school offical wants a kickback for bringing business to the store.
- The Pushy Employee (human resources) An employee receives a cash incentive from a vendor to push their clothing line.
- Bait and Switch or Customary Practice? (marketing) Students need to decide if they want to use the same tactics as their competitor.
- Purchasing Policies (operations, strategy) Students are given the opportunity to diversify their product line.
- The Problem Employee (human resources, ethics) One of the employees may be shoplifting.
- Cooperative Advertising (marketing) A wholesaler offers to pay a portion of all advertising expenses that feature their product.
- Community Support (social responsibility) Local community causes ask for support from the store.
- Political Cause (community relations) Senator Boasting seeks a donation.
- Homecoming Festivities (marketing) The local college wants support for their homecoming activities.
- The New Store (operations, planning, strategy) Students decide whether or not to expand to an additional location.
The main objective of Entrepreneur is to expose students to the variety of issues of starting and operating a new venture. Student teams will function as a “real-life” company competing in a dynamic and evolving industry. With direct-competitive play, students' stores all compete with each other, their decisions affecting each other.
Entrepreneur is designed with the following goals for your students:
- To teach staffing and operations management for a small retail business.
- To help students read basic financial statements.
- To demonstrate the impact of advertising and promotion.
- To illustrate the importance of good business practices.
- To help students develop logical and rational decision-making skills and to consider the multidimensional aspects of these decisions.
- To provide students with the opportunity to interact within an organizational teamwork.
- To improve the student’s communication, leadership, and interpersonal skills.
With Entrepreneur, instructors have a comprehensive set of metrics (12 in total) to judge team performance. For full access to all performance measures, request a Faculty ID. In general, team performance can be judged by the following:
- Cumulative Profit
- Stock Price
- Cumulative Revenue
- Pants/Tops Sold
- And more!
Any of the 12 measures areas can be weighted and combined by the instructor to form an overall score to evaluate how their teams perform.
If you are an instructor and would like to review Entrepreneur for your class, please fill out our Faculty ID Request!
At a Glance
Direct and/or Benchmark Competition
Direct and/or Benchmark
Direct & Benchmark simulation allow your students to team-up and duke it out as separate companies within the same industry, or for each team of students to take on simulated competitors in their own industry.
- Introduction to Business
- Principles of Management
- Small Business Management
- Retail Management
- Start-up decisions: Name, location, and funding for business
- Purchasing and inventory management
- Pricing, promotion and advertising
- Staffing and wages
- Behavioral elements presented in the form of up to 11 mini-cases or incidents to encourage class discussion on different business and management topics.