GCSE & A Level Business – Inspirational Women in Product innovation

Inspirational Women in Product Innovation: Joy 2015

Below you will find an outline of the story line
10 Questions to consider and/or for group discussion AND a FREE teacher worksheet download

Joy is a film based on a biography about an entrepreneur called Joy Mangano, played by Jennifer Lawrence.  Mangano is most famous for developing the Miracle Mop in 1990, later huggable hangers and a number of other successful products.  According to Inc.com, Joy has generated over £3 billion in her career and the celebrity network report that Joy Mangano’s personal net worth today is approximately $70 million.  The film JOY is an inspirational watch for aspiring entrepreneurs and business studies students!  Available on Netflix and Amazon Prime.

The film is a videography about an entrepreneur called Joy Mangano, played by Jennifer Lawrence.  According to vanity fair.com there is little known about Joy Mangano’s early life and she remains a very private individual, but there is some information available. Joy’s dad owned his own business renting buses to schools and we also know from Wikipedia.com that she began inventing from an early age when she dreamed up a fluorescent flea collar to keep pets safe, later also identified and launched by another company.  Joy studied a degree in business administration. In the film we see Joy Mangano as a struggling single mum, living in a home overcrowded with other family members.  It should be noted that most films have added dramatics and some details may not be entirely accurate. Mangano is most famous for developing the Miracle Mop in 1990, later huggable hangers and a number of other successful products.  According to Inc.com, Joy has generated over £3 billion in her career and the celebrity network report that Joy Mangano’s personal net worth today is approximately $70 million. 

*Joy is rated PG13.  GO2Educate has no control over advertising or trailers that follow in the YouTube clip.  

10 Questions & Discussion Points

  1. What inspires Joy to create the design for her miracle mop?
  2. Joy’s potential investor who had manufacturing connections insisted in ensuring her idea was not already patented. Later in the film we see further struggles Joy experiences related to this.  Explain why is it important to patent new inventions?  Extended learning: research the protection a patent provides and the costs of attaining a patent.
  3. What initial strategies did Joy use to try and sell her mop initially and failed?
  4. How did Joy get her first lucky break?
  5. What makes Joy’s mop completely unique to any other mop at that time?
  6. Describe and evaluate the outlet that will be used to sell the product?
  7. What is the considerable risk does Joy take to help fund the manufacturing of her product?
  8. Joy experienced failure in the first run but was determined to make it a success. How did she pull it off in the end?
  9. Joy Mangano had several people who had a significant influence in her life. Who are the most influential people your life and what have they inspired you to do?
  10. In earlier parts of the film Joy is portrayed as having inexperience and lacking the skills to create a successful business. However, in the latter part of the film we see a different side to Joy. What other entrepreneurial skills does Joy illustrate?

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