Small businesses hit by pandemic to access support through government partnership with Sheffield Hallam

14th August 2020

Sheffield Business School is working with the Small Business Charter to deliver a specialised government-funded programme for leaders of small businesses to survive and thrive in the coming months and post-coronavirus.

The practical syllabus provides business owners with access to small business and management experts from the Sheffield Hallam University.

The Small Business Leadership Programme is free and fully funded by the Government to enhance resilience and recovery from the impact of Covid-19 and develop potential for future growth and productivity.

The short and focused programme will be delivered online through a structured course of eight 90-minute webinars over the course of 10 weeks and will provide the knowledge needed for businesses to tackle crisis situations.

It will also give businesses the opportunity to strengthen their business network and create peer business support groups.  Participants will develop strategic leadership skills and the confidence to make informed decisions to boost business performance.

This new scheme comes as part of a £20 million package the government is providing to help small businesses in the long term.

Dr Eileen McAuliffe, Dean of the Sheffield Business School said:

“This is an exciting opportunity for us to make a real difference to small businesses and a fantastic recognition of the expertise of our staff within the Sheffield Business School.

“By helping small businesses navigate the challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic, we are securing the economic future of our region.

“It builds on our recent AACSB accreditation, placing us as one of the top business schools in the world, allowing us to make a positive impact in the city and the region.”

Anne Kiem, OBE, CEO of Chartered Association of Business Schools and Executive Director of the Small Business Charter said: 

“As we continue to grapple with the Coronavirus crisis it is also essential we look long term to ensure small businesses are supported to build resilience, survival and growth.

“Business schools can provide the expertise and knowledge all business owners and directors need to continue to thrive in uncertain times.”

Small Business Minister, Paul Scully said: 

“The strength of small businesses up and down the country will be vital as we begin to bounce back from coronavirus and re-build our economy.

“The Small Business Leadership Programme will help to equip small business leaders with the leadership and problem-solving skills they need to grow their firms in the wake of this pandemic.”

Sheffield Business School was accredited by the Small Business Charter (SBC) in 2018, a national accreditation awarded by small businesses to business schools who excel in supporting SMEs and the local economy.

Coronavirus has put untold pressure on directors and CEOs of small companies trying to navigate unchartered waters. According to a recent McKinsey online survey of UK SMEs, 80 percent of small businesses reported their revenues were declining in June in 2020.

The Government has made up to £30 billion available to support economic recovery ahead of the autumn and businesses can continue to draw upon a range of financial support during this challenging time, including loans, tax deferrals and cash grants. The SBLP will help businesses to bounce back from the impact of coronavirus and prepare for any future disruption.

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