4 Great Ways to Improve Your Knowledge of Your Role-play

Here are several simple tips you can use to further your knowledge of the industry that your role-play is based on.

1. Look at Industry Publications. Industry publications will vary depending on each event, but they all allow you to stay up-to-date with what is happening in that trade. This directory contains many links to trade publications. These journals will often contain the newest information that no other study aid will have, such as new technology or laws and regulations that affect the businesses. The only downsides is that sometimes, these journals may assume you already know a great deal about that industry, and some information may be beyond a DECA member’s knowledge level.

2. Use the Official DECA Compete app. The DECA Compete app is great for studying, as it contains real test questions from real DECA exams. These tests will give you a great baseline of what you know about the subject, and what you still need to learn. When studying with the app, I like to take notes of the questions that I had a hard time on, so that I can go back and review the information later.

3. Flip through a book. How-to books are great for studying, as they contain basic information on lots of topics. Since it is hard to predict which aspect of a business or industry your role-play will deal with, it’s good to diversify. The major downside to books is that they can’t be constantly updated like a website or e-publication. However, the techniques described in most books should still be current and useful.

4. Watch business and entrepreneurial TV shows. TV shows, such as Restaurant Impossible, Hotel Impossible, and The Profit, all feature real world problem solving scenarios. The problems that people in these shows face are usually very similar to problems that you might face in a role-play. When watching, make mental notes about how they approached the problem, as well as they different techniques they use to solve it. Some of the TV shows also have good phrases or words that will impress your judges.

5. Read through the performance indicators. Your role-play’s performance indicators contain the scoring items for your role-play. This will help you narrow down what you need to study. You can also read through these while studying, so you can practice applying what you have learned towards what the judge will evaluate you on.

With these simple tips, you’ll be ready to rock the role-play this year!

Follow Jake on Twitter @DECAJake.