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Barbie dolls as brainstorming tools

What do entrepreneurship and Barbie have in common?


Novia University of Applied Sciences developed a new training module for young entrepreneurs to be done before turning their ideas into business.


In the training, at least four people have to come to­gether each with their own Barbie doll. With Barbie’s help, one entrepreneur has to briefly describe her business ideas. Through role play, the entrepreneur narrates in the third person what her Barbie dreams of doing. A reflection session follows. Then the next Barbie comes in—the potential client. This fictitious client represents the entrepreneur’s target group and gets to ask the entrepreneur-Barbie about her idea. Last, the business concept needs to be sold to possible investors impersonated by the much feared shark-Barbie. After marketing the business idea, the group evaluates what the entrepreneur has learned, how her idea has developed, and if she is ready to pitch it to business centres.


Mari Krappala, Novia University (Finland):

“This training opens up a new kind of thinking when it comes to analyzing business ideas. Imagination is powerful if there is the capacity to analyze it afterwards.”



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