Kevin Grant, Dean of the Management School

The University of Stirling Management School has launched a training programme for managers across Scotland to help small and medium-sized businesses develop growth strategies and improve performance as they recover from the pandemic.

The 12-week ‘Help to Grow: Management’ programme will include both online sessions and face-to-face case study workshops, conducted by small business specialists from Stirling Management School (SMS) and supported by chartered accountants and business advisers Johnston Carmichael.

SMS has 25 places available, beginning on October 6, with a second cohort due to run from January 12, 2022.

Thanks to its membership of the Small Business Charter, SMS is one of only two Scottish institutions to currently offer the scheme, which is 90 per cent funded by the UK Government’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), and costs just £750 to participants.

“Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of our economy,” said the Dean of Stirling Management School, Professor Kevin Grant. “We are proud and pleased to be able to offer this support to businesses across our community after such a difficult 18 months.

“This is not an academic programme – it’s a hands-on mixture of interactive sessions, masterclasses and online teaching designed to help managers evaluate the way they operate and develop their skills, allowing their business to expand inclusively and to strengthen the local economy.”

The programme is being delivered in partnership with leading independent business advisory and accountancy firm, Johnston Carmichael. Experts from Johnston Carmichael’s senior team will provide one-to-one mentoring to participants in the programme to help them develop growth action plans, enhance their business strategies, and build resilience to changing business environments.

Head of consulting at Johnston Carmichael, Alistair Black, said: “Supporting the growth and success of businesses is at the core of what we do at Johnston Carmichael.

“The Help to Grow management scheme is a fantastic opportunity for the leaders of small and medium-sized businesses to access expert advice and support in order to take their organisations to the next level and continue to thrive.

“We’re delighted to be involved and looking forward to working with ambitious and driven business leaders.”

The Help to Grow programme is built around a practical curriculum designed to be completed alongside full-time work. It includes:

  • Eight facilitated, online, two-hour sessions
  • Four practical, face-to-face case study workshops
  • Ten hours of one-to-one support from a mentor, providing personalised support to develop a business growth plan
  • Peer networking, including peer group calls offering the opportunity to share experiences with a small group of other small business leaders
  • Access to the SMS Alumni Programme, featuring events with inspirational speakers, business clinics and networking events
  • Modules on financial management, strategies for growth and innovation, and approaches to digital adoption.

Small to medium businesses employing between five and 250 staff members are eligible to apply. The business must have been in operation for at least one year and those applying must be a decision-maker, with at least one person reporting to them.

To apply visit Stirling SCOT Cohort 1 – Small Business Charter

For more information visit Help to Grow – Management – Small Business Charter