Portsmouth: New government-funded programme supporting small businesses

The new, fully-funded leadership course for small businesses is underway in Portsmouth, providing leadership support as businesses continue to tackle the impacts of Covid-19.

Supported by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, the Small Business Leadership Programme (SBLP) is a free, 10-week training programme for senior leaders in SMEs.

The programme is fully funded by the Government, who have partnered with the Small Business Charter and is being delivered by business schools across the country. The programme covers a range of practical topics and is delivered online by small business experts – including entrepreneurs, business leaders and academics – from The University of Portsmouth’s Business School.

To aid business resilience and future growth in the current climate, the Small Business Leadership Programme will create peer groups to develop stronger leadership, innovation, operational efficiency, marketing and finance, from some of the top business schools around the country.

All business schools delivering the programme have been accredited by the Small Business Charter (SBC), a national accreditation awarded by small businesses to business schools who excel in supporting SMEs and the local economy.

The practical syllabus provides business leaders with access to small business and management experts at some of the UK’s leading business schools. The Small Business Leadership Programme is free and fully funded by the Government to enhance small business resilience and recovery from the impact of COVID-19 and develop potential for future growth and productivity.

With eight, 90-minute webinars, alongside independent and peer-to-peer learning, the programme is designed to support and fit in with day-to-day business delivery. Participants must be in senior management roles, with at least one direct report, in businesses which have been operating for at least one year, and with 5-249 employees.

Peter Hooley, director of business development at the University of Portsmouth, said: “With restrictions constantly changing, businesses are currently facing more uncertainty than ever. It is important that we help each other and share our varying expertise. Here at Portsmouth Business School, we have experts in a wide range of fields, able to provide insight into marketing, formal planning and futureproofing. With this, we hope that businesses will not only survive this crisis, but also come out better.”

This scheme is part of a £20 million package the government is providing to help small businesses in the long term. The Small Business Leadership Programme is being delivered across the country by a consortium of business schools accredited by the Small Business Charter (SBC).