The new scheme comes as part of a £20 million package the government are providing to help small businesses in the long term.
To aid business resilience and future growth in the current climate, the Small Business Leadership Programme aims to develop stronger leadership, innovation, operational efficiency, marketing and finance.
Staffordshire Business School retained the Small Business Charter following a successful reaccreditation in April. The national accreditation is awarded to business schools who excel in supporting SMEs and the local economy.
The new programme, to be run through SBC accredited business schools, recognises that Coronavirus has put untold pressure on directors and CEOs of small companies. According to a recent McKinsey online survey of UK SMEs, 80 percent of small businesses reported their revenues were declining in June in 2020.
Beginning this September, the free ten-week programme will be delivered online through a series of webinars that will help businesses to bounce back from the impact of coronavirus and prepare for any future disruption.
Professor of Sustainable Development, Jon Fairburn said: “Since May and in direct response to the pandemic we have been delivering our own survive and thrive webinars and free one-to-one business support as supporting our business community is an important part of our responsibilities as a Civic University.
“We are also delighted to be that our SBC accreditation enables us to play a part in Government’s intervention to help SMEs develop the knowledge to see them through the crisis and strengthen their business networks.
“We hope small businesses throughout Staffordshire and Cheshire will take full advantage of this free, fully funded and practical syllabus which can help them survive the coming months and develop potential for future growth and productivity.”
Kat Mitchell, Lecturer in Digital Marketing added: “Many businesses have pivoted their operations and services due to the pandemic, for example by developing ecommerce options or implementing digital solutions. Businesses that can manage change will be more successful and we know more change is coming. Whatever happens with COVID businesses will not be going back to how things were before.”
Announcing the programme, Paul Scully, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy said: “The strength of small businesses up and down the country will be vital as we begin to bounce back from coronavirus and re-build our economy. The Small Business Leadership Programme will help to equip small business leaders with the leadership and problem-solving skills they need to grow their firms in the wake of this pandemic.”
Eligible business must be a Small or Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) from any sector, employing between 5 and 249 people and operational for at least one year. The participant should be a decision maker or member of the senior management team within the business, eg Chief Executive, Finance Director etc with at least one person reporting directly to them. Participants are required to complete all sessions. Register here.