leedsbeckett-Help to Grow group

Leeds Business School launching small business management course

Leaders of small businesses in Yorkshire can transform their business performance and boost growth through the Government-funded Help to Grow: Management programme – delivered by leadership and management experts at Leeds Beckett University – starting in April.

The 12-week programme, supporting senior managers of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to boost their business’s performance, resilience and long-term growth, has been running at Leeds Beckett University since June 2021. The next programme will start on Monday 22 April, with further groups starting from September.

Olga Munroe, Help to Grow Programme Director at Leeds Beckett, explained: “We launched our Help to Grow Programme in June 2021, as the follow-up programme to the Government’s Small Business Leadership Programme. So far, we have supported more than 210 Yorkshire SMEs through this initiative.

“With Help to Grow, we ensure a real focus on practical problem-solving techniques and all businesses come away with an action plan to embed in their organisation from the word ‘go’. We are directly providing the skillset – the frameworks and toolkits – needed to support leaders in mitigating risks and optimising opportunities for growth.”

The programme is 90% funded by the Government – with a total of only £750 per business to contribute. It has been designed to be completed by senior managers of SMEs alongside full-time work.

For more information, please visit https://bit.ly/LBUHelptoGrow – and register for the course at https://smallbusinesscharter.org/h2gmcourse/leeds-beckett-13

Salman Khan, International Sales Manager at Monster Group (UK), completed Help to Grow: Management at Leeds Beckett in 2023. He said: “At Monster, we identified a gap in our ability to effectively reflect on our company’s performance, particularly in areas like employee engagement, market segmentation, and overall operations. Since taking part in Help to Grow, we’ve already seen benefits – we conducted an employee engagement survey that yielded valuable insights; and I’ve applied the course teachings to a new project that we’re launching this summer, creating a ‘Growth Action Plan on a Page’ to ensure a smooth and successful launch.

“The course included engaging peer sessions and mentor discussions. The tutors were adept at tailoring lessons to businesses of all sizes and industries. The real highlights were the face-to-face sessions that sparked stimulating debates and ideas.”

Following the programme, businesses become part of the Leeds Beckett alumni community – allowing them continued access to expert guest lectures, networking events, and the University’s SME support programmes including part-funded Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs)Women Empowered through Coaching and Networking (#WECAN)Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) courses, and student and graduate recruitment and placements.

A 2023 Leeds Beckett University survey showed that, prior to completing the programme at LBU, 50% of businesses felt they did not have all the skills they need to lead their business over the next three years – and one in three leaders said they were not confident in knowing what changes they needed to make to their business in order to grow.

An independent national survey showed that, within six months of completing the programme, 90% of SME leaders felt that the programme had improved the leadership and management of their business.