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MasterMind Business Start Up

A 2-day programme for current NTU Masters Students looking to turn their skills into a business

saturday side hustle
Networking | Workshops

As a Masters degree student, you will have high-calibre skills and knowledge. Have you considered turning that into a business?

The MasterMind programme will take you through all the basics elements you need to know about starting and running a business.

  • From: Tuesday 23 August 2022, 9.30 am
  • To: Wednesday 24 August 2022, 4.30 pm
  • Location: Dryden Enterprise Centre, Dryden Street, Nottingham, NG1 4FQ
  • Cost: Free
  • Booking deadline: Friday 19 August 2022, 11.59 pm
  • Download this event to your calendar

Past event

Event details

As a Masters degree student, you will have high-calibre skills and knowledge. Have you considered turning that into a business?

It could be a small freelance side-hustle or perhaps you want to start a business and work in it full time. The MasterMind programme will take you through all the basics elements you need to know about starting and running a business. The programme is run by NTU Enterprise and The Big House.

It’s an intensive two full days – but at the end you should know if running a business is for you, what to do to get going, how to trade legally and how to get the ‘value proposition’ of your business across to potential customers.

The programme will focus on operations – the nitty gritty day to day running of a business, and we’ll use a special mapping tool (a modified Business Model Canvas) to help you understand and bring together the various elements of understanding and running a business. You don’t need any previous knowledge of starting or running a business.

To reserve a place on the programme, you simply need to:

  • Commit to attending both days: Tuesday 23 August and Wednesday 24 August 2022.
  • Have an idea for what your business will be – but it doesn’t need to be finalised. For example it could be you want to launch a business offering consultancy in the field of your Masters degree, or start selling your artwork.

There is no cost for you to attend.

You do need to commit to attending both days if you are available. If you’re unable to do that, then sorry the programme isn’t for you.

The programme will be hosted by NTU Enterprise in their dedicated building for entrepreneurs, Dryden Enterprise Centre, at NTU’s city campus.

If you can’t attend this programme but would still like help around starting a business, please see these links:

Please also look on NOW for the NTU Enterprise Learning Room, which contains lots of resources. The outline of the programme follows.


Day 1 - Tuesday 23 August 2022



Summary of topics explored 

Part 1: Foundations of starting a business

09.30 – 09.45

Welcome / Introductions.


09.45 – 10.15

Key start up considerations.

How to start in a manageable way.

10.15 – 10.45

The one-page business model: overview of the Business Model Canvas (“BMC”).

The sections on the classic BMC:

  • Product / service description
  • Value proposition
  • Customer group(s)
  • Customer relationships & retention
  • Delivery channel(s)
  • Marketing channels
  • Key Partners
  • Key Operations
  • Key Resources
  • Costs
  • Revenue streams

Our improved model

10.45 Break


11.00 – 11.45

Value Proposition.

The importance of communicating the value propositionsof your business.

A simple method to generate your value propositions.

Part 2: Embedding Sustainability

11.45 – 12.15

Sustainability: Your social & environmental impacts.

The three pillars of sustainability: How to think about sustainability in your business, including some simple & helpful tools.

12.15 Lunch

Networking lunch; Q&A time.


Part 3: Operations, Reality & Action Planning

13.15 – 13.45

ACTION: complete first iteration of your BMC.


13.45 – 15.15

Detailed feedback on 3 BMCs with focus on operations.


15.15 Break


15.30 – 16.00

ACTION: complete a customer journey mapping exercise to highlight areas for planning / skills development / resources required.


16.00 – 16.30

Start-up and ongoing costs.



Q & A


Discussion & Open time for any questions, issues etc.

Day 2 -  Wednesday 24 August 2022



Summary of topics covered

Welcome Back

Part 4: Legalities

09.30 – 10.15

Legal structures of business (UK) and tax regimes:

Sole Trader vs Ltd company.

Do I need to register as a business: Trading Allowance.

What taxes might I pay?

Doing a tax return.

10.15 – 10.25


What insurance might you need?

10.25 – 10.35

Intellectual Property.

Overview of IP.

10.35 – 10.45

Terms & Conditions.

Protecting yourself with T&Cs.

10.45 – 10.55

Consumer legislation.

Where to find out what legislation you need to follow.



Part 5: Money management & business viability

11.15 – 11.25

How to keep accounts.


11.25 – 12.05

How much to charge?

Review of start-up and ongoing costs - can you ‘bootstrap’?

How to calculate your selling price.

Is your selling price realistic?

12.05 – 12.30

Sales Forecasts & Cashflow.

How much will you sell?



Part 6: Critical Market Research

13.30 – 14.30

Market Research.

Competitor Analysis.

The importance of market research

14.30 – 15.00

Minimum Viable Product & test trading.

Make an MVP



Part 7: The Marketing Message 

15.15 – 16.15

How to create marketing content.

Customer Profile & Persona.

Creating marketing copy / the micropitch.

Don’t forget customer retention.

16.15 – 16.30 

Q&A; Review & close

Location details


Dryden Enterprise Centre
Dryden Street


There is no onsite parking at the Dryden Enterprise Centre, and we encourage, wherever possible, that people access the building by walking, cycling, or using public transport.

The DEC is within Nottingham Trent University’s city campus.

We’re adjacent to the Dryden Centre and opposite the Bonington Gallery. Our location is highlighted by the NTU Enterprise pin. Map courtesy of Google.

If you’re using SatNav or Google Maps use the postcode NG1 4FQ to help find us.

Past event

Still need help?

+44 (0)115 941 8418