Junior Achievement has been a 'Satis-Factory' experience for these Fredericton teens
This article was published in the Fredericton Daily Gleaner on November 22nd.
BY: Rebecca Howland
Looking for the perfect Christmas gift?
Then look no further than the Satis-Factory.
The group is part of the Junior Achievement company held at Leo Hayes High School and has been developing their product Sip N' Dip since the fall to get ready for their selling period.
"It comes with a mug and in the mug there is two teas and two hot chocolates," said Jiho Han, the president of Satis-Factory and a grade 12 student at Leo Hayes High School.
"It was his idea," said Jamie Little, the vice-president of marketing.
All of the goodies are packaged in a Christmas or winter-themed mug and wrapped up with cellophane and tied with a ribbon.
The cost of the mug pack is $10 and all the proceeds go back into the Junior Achievement Company Program, which teaches students in grades 9 to 12 how a business is fun.
"The weather is getting cold and people are looking for things to keep them warm," Han said. "So, I just kind of thought we could sell people something that can make people warm."
Little also thought the product was a good idea because of the popularity of warm drinks during the holidays.
"Hot chocolate and tea are always popular around Christmas time," the grade 9 FHS student said. "People are also looking for Christmas gifts, too. So, if they want to buy one, they can give it to a relative."
The Satis-Factory team will be selling their product at an upcoming Business Fredericton North event and another at the Crowne Plaza.
There are two other groups in the Fredericton program, but Satis-Factory has the highest number of Grade 9 students, or first-year achievers.
While some might see that as a disadvantage, Han thinks it's an excellent advantage.
"I think they're more creative," he said. "They're younger and have a lot of ideas. I like having more younger students (in my company) because older ones don't have really creative ideas."
As a first-year achiever, Little says the company program has definitely been a learning opportunity.
"I had no idea what a marketing and sales representative did," she said. "It's definitely a great help to have the advisors with us because they inform all the grade nines. Now I know what I'm doing."
They had a little help from their president, too.
But the project has included some challenges.
"It's their first year, so it's all new to them, so I have to, like, lead them," Han said. "I also have to (find ways) to include them (all). I find that's challenging."
As for the VP of marketing, she has found time can be an issue.
"I recently observed that you have a lack of time," Little said. "Time needs to be organized well, planned more efficiently. The only other thing might be a lack of communication. Grade nines aren't used to checking their mail every few hours or, like, being on their phones looking our for business-related things."
Even with the bumps along the way, both Little and Han feel JA has prepared them for what's next in their future.
"I'm actually planning to get into the military as an officer," Han said. "So as an officer you need to have really good leadership skills. So, I joined JA to be a better leader."
"Again, I definitely think leadership skills (are important)," she said. "It's always good to have experience with that. I think co-ordination (is another thing that'll help). I've never had to co-ordinate jobs to people and have seen this much team effort on this large or a scale."
Being in the program has allowed both teens to gain motivation.
Each of them are shooting for the 'top seller' award at the end of the year.
"I said if I became top seller, I would shave my hair," Han said.
With the gift-shopping frenzy starting, Little and Han feel you can't go wrong with a JA product like Sip N' Dip.
"There's definitely something for everyone," Little said. "Where JA is a non-profit organization and this is basically run by kids who want to get more involved in business, so if they can support the cause, it's not too expensive and makes a good Christmas gift."