Businesses are urged to apply for a free advice and support programme.
The Peer Network programme, run by Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership, is opening a new cohort and is looking to offer guidance, support and advice to businesses looking to develop new ways of thinking and responses to their business challenges – really helping businesses to develop new solutions to the issues that they are facing.
The programme runs from October to March 2022 and topics covered include developing your entrepreneurial and finance skills, how to support the wellbeing and motivation of your workforce, HR and marketing.
Sessions will take place every fortnight on a Tuesday morning.
The sessions will be led by Jack Stopforth, of Taylor Stopforth (Consulting Services), who has worked as CEO/MD and chair of his own and other people’s businesses and organisations for many years.
Jack has lived in Cumbria for 25 years and works as a management consultant across the UK and internationally.
He is chair of the Borderlands Economy Forum and is a member of the Partnership Board of the Borderlands Inclusive Growth Deal.
Jack said: “The stats are unequivocal. Business owners and managers, who reach out and seek external support are more likely to succeed than those who don’t. It is a cliché but running a business, whether it’s your own or somebody else’s, is a stressful and lonely job.
“Meeting others facing the same pressures and learning from their experience can only help.
“Coaching sessions will cover a range of business issues, but don’t expect lectures or seminars. I am less interested in teaching those things than I am in finding new ways to deal with them as challenges unique to your business.
“This is what we mean by innovative businesses – not necessarily technological solutions but fresh approaches to your business challenges discussed in an atmosphere of trust and collaboration, whether in the peer group or in one to one mentoring and I can’t wait to get started.”
Cumbria’s Peer Network is a programme free to qualifying businesses that brings them together across a range of themed cohorts to share their collective experience.
Eligible firms should have been trading for at least 12 months, employ between five and 249 people and have a turnover of at least £100,000 per annum, up to a maximum of £36m.
It is aimed at SMEs with similar growth ambitions, allowing them to share their experiences, challenges and opportunities and offers one-to-one coaching to provide each business with bespoke support.
Businesses wishing to take advantage of the scheme are urged to register quickly, as places are limited.
The programme is funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and therefore businesses are able to benefit from the programmes at no cost. However, demand is likely to be high and businesses are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.
To apply, or for further information, contact CLEP programme manager Amanda Wharton on 07920 877644 or [email protected]