Yorkshire businesses get Help to Grow at University of Leeds
The Help to Grow programme is for local business owners and senior leaders operating in small and medium-sized businesses, and who are keen to grow their organisations.
Caroline Wherritt is Founder and CEO of Re:Work, a Leeds-based office furniture business, who took part in the course because of the opportunity it offered to receive practical business coaching and mentoring, whilst also aligning with the business’s own growth aspirations and ethos
“The value for money cannot be overstated,” says Caroline, stating the cost is equivalent to a couple of days of business coaching. “There’s an unbelievable wealth of practical business and academic knowledge in one room. You can’t put a price on it,” Caroline adds.
What is the programme?
The 12-week programme, which includes a mixture of online and in-person sessions, has been designed to be manageable alongside full-time work and will support participants in developing their strategic skills. The programme combines a practical curriculum, with 1:1 business mentoring, peer-learning sessions and access to a diverse alumni network.
Caroline was also impressed by the delivery of the teaching, with “laser-focussed modules that lead you through the journey”. Caroline added “it’s not just sitting in lectures, it’s very active and tailored to your business. There are always two to three key actions from the sessions you can implement straight away.”
The programme is available to senior leaders in small and medium businesses from any sector that have been operating for more than one year, with five to 249 employees.
Professor Sarah Underwood is the Business School’s Director of External Engagement and acted as one of the facilitators for the course.
“We wanted to make sure we gave them a real celebration to close the 12 weeks they’ve spent with us. It has been great working with so many talented small business owners and watching them go on to progress, full of confidence and new ideas.”
Professor Underwood believes it’s the breadth of industries taking part that makes it particularly eye-opening for participants.
“In this first group we had business owners in manufacturing, construction, marketing and communications, fashion, engineering and professional services and that opens up so many opportunities for sharing new ideas and learning from a diverse range of leadership experiences.”
Supporting business at University of Leeds
Help to Grow is just one part of the support that Leeds University Business School offers to local businesses, which includes a range of courses, networking, research collaboration, Knowledge Transfer Partnerships and opportunities to work with our students.
Professor Underwood continues: “What’s important to us is that we make a real difference to these individuals, their businesses and the local economy. We want to form meaningful long term partnerships with small business owners in the region, and work with them for years to come.”
Find out more about Help to Grow by visiting business.leeds.ac.uk/help-to-grow