Business boot camp kicks off at York St John Business School
While the region’s businesses start gearing up
for the Easter break, ten fledgling Yorkshire companies are being
put through their paces this week at a business 'boot camp' run by
York St John Business School.
The Acorns Plus programme is a fully funded,
week-long intensive course for start-up businesses, designed to
give new entrepreneurs an overview of key areas including strategic
planning, securing and managing finance, sales, administration,
legalities, marketing and networking.
Course co-ordinator, Irma Gomez, explains:
"The programme combines talks from external speakers who are all
experts in their field with practical workshops and 'real life'
experiences from other business owners.
"At the end of the week, each entrepreneur
will have a good grounding in the areas that are key to getting a
business off the ground, as well as market analysis, networking
experience, a communications plan and a clear idea of where they go
"This year we are also introducing a monthly
'refresher' once the course is over, where some of our experts will
return to see how the entrepreneurs are progressing with the areas
they have worked on during the programme and help them stay on
The Acorns programme, now in its sixth year,
has proved a huge success with young businesses from all over the
region. Former 'acorn' and owner of United by Design firm,
Owen Turner, will return to the university this week to talk about
his experiences of setting up and growing a business. He says
the course is invaluable for a business in its early stages:
"Being in business can be lonely, and meeting
other people who are in the same boat is incredibly valuable," he
says. "I'm still in touch with the people I met on the course three
years ago, and we still meet regularly to bounce ideas around and
share our experiences, challenges and successes. You can't put a
price on that kind of support."
Business School Dean Jackie Mathers says she's
pleased to see recent York St John University graduates on this
year's programme. "It's fantastic to see some of our graduates
taking the option of setting up in business and great that we can
offer them this support at the crucial early stages.
"Our aim is to see those young people come
back to share their experiences and successes with entrepreneurs in
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