Case Study – Harris Paints

Industry: Paint manufacturer and distributor (Harris Paints)

Challenge: October 2016

 Challenge: Allowing customers and prospective customers to put together a colour scheme in a fun and innovative way for use in painting a home or business. This product should also come with a customer friendly user guide and a reliable marketing strategy.

 Participants: 27 students from educational institutions across Barbados


  • 95% of students felt the event ran smoothly and any problems were handled well.>/p>
  • 95% of students felt they had good support.
  • 100% of students found the programme interesting and might recommend it to a friend.
  • 100% of students had a good feel for what it is like to be part of a real business assignment.

 “Students develop new product to colour their world through innovation”

With over 45 years of expertise, Harris Paints is one of the Caribbean’s leading manufacturers of paints and paint products. They have found that in this technological world the current process of customers choosing colour schemes is antiquated. Harris desired an innovative but reliable method of allowing customers to choose their colour schemes interactively.


The students from their various backgrounds created a group name and divided themselves into groups to break down the task. At the end of the week they presented four solutions to an expert panel. In retrospect, the group found that the best parts of the programme were:

“ the liaison with an executive team (especially the CEO) and the learning the presentation skills enjoyed practicing the effective ways to deliver a pitch or ideas as well as always having access to business employees and customers.” They also enjoyed “creating the ides and seeing them being developed and then presented.”

Additionally, the students improved the following personal skills:

  • Problem solving – 100%
  • Team working – 100%
  • Leaderships skills – 100%
  • Working to tight deadlines – 100%
  • Project management – 100%
  • Motivating myself – 100%

The Harris panel was so impressed by the students that they committed to implement one of the students’ ideas and contribute a portion of the sales for each item sold to their group.

Ian Kenyon, CEO, Harris Paints found himself “really impressed with the overall thought that had gone into the presentation (ideas and content) and the delivery of it was excellent”

Michael Forde, Vocational Services Director, Rotary Club of Barbados South added that “The team support was so palpable given the very short time that these “strangers” had been together”

Student Solutions: Through their entrepreneurial group “Full Spectrum” the students created a colour therapy colouring book and pencils. These students were the first Classroom to Boardroom group to take their ideas from concept to implementation. To date, over 2000 of their ‘Harris Colour Therapy’ products have been sold.