Stay ahead in busi­ness with ex­pert guid­ance

Workshop: Pro­fes­sor to lead ses­sion

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - BUSINESS - BY STAN AR­NAUD

High­lands and is­lands en­trepreneurs are be­ing of­fered an op­por­tu­nity to learn how they can gain a com­pet­i­tive edge over their com­peti­tors at a mas­ter­class with a lead­ing ex­pert in In­ver­ness next month.

The two-day workshop will be led by Pro­fes­sor Eleanor Shaw, of the Hunter Cen­tre for En­trepreneur­ship and vice dean of Strath­clyde Uni­ver­sity’s busi­ness school.

Pro­fes­sor Shaw has more than 25 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence in de­liv­er­ing en­trepreneur­ship ed­u­ca­tion around the world. She has also car­ried out ex­ten­sive re­search on the sub­ject.

The mas­ter­class will also in­clude a ses­sion with Stu­art Row­ell, a non-ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of Tra­nent-based ther­mal en­ergy stor­age com­pany Su­namp. Mr Row­ell’s ca­reer spans 30 years, with the past five spent work­ing with SME and start-up busi­nesses, par­tic­u­larly in the soft­ware devel­op­ment and en­ergy sec­tors.

Pro­fes­sor Shaw said: “By cre­at­ing a com­pet­i­tive ad­van­tage, busi­nesses can set a buf­fer be­tween them and their com­peti­tors; in turn cre­at­ing a more se­cure place in the mar­ket.

“The way in which we ap­proach ex­ec­u­tive ed­u­ca­tion at the Uni­ver­sity of Strath­clyde is dif­fer­ent – we put the fo­cus on the par­tic­i­pant in the room, look­ing at their needs and pro­vid­ing ac­cess to tool­kits and learn­ing so af­ter the mas­ter­class they can start work­ing with col­leagues and hon­ing their value propo­si­tion straight away.”

S h e c o n t i n u e d : “Ev­ery­thing we do has been road-tested by work­ing with en­trepreneurs and we’ve learned that cre­at­ing a com­pet­i­tive ad­van­tage can help a busi­ness in many ways.

“I’m re­ally look­ing for­ward to work­ing with High­lands and Is­lands en­trepreneurs, shar­ing our learn­ings and mak­ing new con­nec­tions in the re­gion.”

The mas­ter­class, which will take place on Fe­bru­ary 20 and 21 at the Kingsmills Ho­tel, in In­ver­ness, has been or­gan­ised by devel­op­ment agency High­lands and Is­lands En­ter­prise (HIE).

Louise Mac­Don­ald, se­nior en­trepreneur­ship man­ager at HIE, said: “Cre­at­ing and sus­tain­ing a com­pet­i­tive ad­van­tage can be dif­fi­cult in to­day’s ever-chang­ing and dy­namic en­vi­ron­ment. Busi­nesses need to think strate­gi­cally and be able to an­a­lyse their propo­si­tion to find ways to en­hance im­pact, value and per­for­mance.

“The Fe­bru­ary mas­ter­class will teach en­trepreneurs from across the re­gion the tools and tech­niques to stay ahead of the game. I look for­ward to meet­ing del­e­gates and see­ing how they im­ple­ment what they learn within their busi­nesses.”

HIE is also of­fer­ing to help com­pa­nies in the area pre­pare for Brexit, with an event in the High­land cap­i­tal on Jan­uary 24.

The one-day Get Your Busi­ness Ready for Brexit ses­sion is also tak­ing place at the Kingsmills Ho­tel. El­e­va­tor, a so­cial en­ter­prise which sup­ports start-ups in Scot­land through de­liv­ery of its Busi­ness Gate­way and other schemes for en­trepreneurs, has opened ap­pli­ca­tions for its spring Ac­cel­er­a­tor pro­gramme.

Over the past three years, the or­gan­i­sa­tion has sup­ported more than 76 busi­nesses via its three Ac­cel­er­a­tors

“Shar­ing our learn­ings and mak­ing new con­nec­tions”

“Hav­ing a great prod­uct or idea is only one piece of the puz­zle”

across the north-east and Tay­side, cre­at­ing 43 jobs and launch­ing 22 start-ups.

The next co­hort will run from Fe­bru­ary 25 to May 22 across Aberdeen, Dundee and Perth.

Andy Camp­bell, head of El­e­va­tor’s Ac­cel­er­a­tor, said: “Hav­ing a great prod­uct or idea is only one piece of the puz­zle to mak­ing suc­cess hap­pen.

“Our Ac­cel­er­a­tor pro­grammes ex­ist to push busi­nesses to grow, col­lab­o­rate and flourish.”

AD­VICE: Pro­fes­sor Eleanor Shaw from the Hunter Cen­tre for En­trepreneur­ship

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