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“Pioneering” course helps small businesses

Entrepreneurs who have taken part in a leadership and management programme have increased their turnover by an average of £130,000.

The pioneering LEAD course – a one-year mini-MBA specifically designed for owners of companies with less than 20 employees is taught at Lancaster University Management School. It offers training to owner-managers through a mixture of master classes, peer-based learning, mentoring, coaching, workshops and job swaps.

A celebration of the success of the course was held at the University last week. An evaluation report presented to business and education leaders from the North showed how the programme ““ run by the Management School’s Institute for Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development (IEED) has helped business owners transform their working methods and profits.

LEAD graduates include owners of companies across various industries including agriculture, engineering, recruitment, IT and communications.

Michael Hill, director of Blackburn-based Optima Control Solutions told the audience of the progress he had made since graduating from LEAD.

He and his co-director Adrian West had purchased new business premises, increased their staff from eight to fifteen employees, restructured the company and put two senior management teams in place. They have also seen turnover increase from £900,000 in 2004 to £1.4m.

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He said: “The LEAD programme showed me how business works. I learned that business can be fine-tuned and tweaked to perform better”.

Clive Memmott, Chief Executive of Business Link Lancashire congratulated LEAD on bringing world-renowned academics to work alongside small business owners from across the region.

The LEAD programme is being run at the IEED again this year.

For more information, click here.

Hardip Sidhu.

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