JA Launch Lesson

The JA Launch Lesson highlights current JA programs by bringing an inspiring entrepreneur into the classroom for one hour during the week to share his or her experience with students. The program is designed to be simple for the entrepreneurs to implement, but impactful for the teens participating.

For example, during the JA experience, students can learn how to create a business plan or successfully interview for a job.

Introduce Yourself and Your Company

  • Ice Breaker
  • Have a few students name their favorite product or service and explain why they like it. Does it meet a need?
  • Give an example of your favorite product or service and explain why you chose it.
  • Explain that a good product or service idea fills a need or solves a problem. It also is essential that entrepreneurs are passionate about their product or service because developing it typically requires much time and effort.
  • Ask students if any of them have thought about a need that could be filled or a problem that could be solved with a new product or service, or by improving an existing product or service.

Provide an Overview of Your Company

  • Big idea–Share your big idea. Tell the story of how it developed.
  • Customers–Describe the target market for your product or service. Explain why it fills a need.
  • Value Proposition–Talk about why your product or service is more appealing than that of your competitors.
  • Sales and Marketing–Explain how you market your product or service.
  • Capital–Share how you funded the startup of your company. Describe other methods of securing startup capital.

Share Stories to Highlight You and Your Experiences

  • Motivation–What motivated you from idea to action?
  • Inspiration–Who were your mentors and how did they influence your startup? Who is in your support network?
  • Preparation–What education, training, and experience helped prepare you to start a business?
  • Expectation–What has surprised you most in your entrepreneurial journey?
  • Challenges–What major business challenges have you have encountered? How did you overcome them?

Discuss Specific Steps Students Can Take to Become Entrepreneurs

  • Ask students if anyone would like to share a possible business idea.
  • Provide insight for those interested in starting a business—possible next steps, what they should and should not do, and local resources.
  • Encourage each student to take one concrete step this week to begin building his or her own business and to visit our resource page for useful tools.

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