University at centre of initiative to support SMEs with sustainability and growth
The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) is spearheading a new leadership development programme which will enable Lancashire’s SMEs to develop the leadership and management skills of their workforces, creating the leaders of the future.
Funding of £4.6 million has been secured from the European Social Fund (ESF) to facilitate the Leading Lancashire project for the next three years.
The programme will provide the county’s SME workforce with access to training with a focus on developing skills for current and future managers and leaders, enabling them to progress into, sustain and develop within leadership management roles.
Lancashire’s business community is thriving and has many inspirational leaders, and what we want to do is help SMEs achieve their full potential and bring out the best in their workforces.
Short accredited courses from the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) and Chartered Management Institute (CMI) will deliver bespoke training to meet individual employee needs. Apprentices will also be supported to develop additional leadership and management skills. Coaching and mentoring will assist SMEs with their leadership succession plans as well as providing support for individuals progressing into management and leadership roles.
Through taking part in the Leading Lancashire project, individuals will create their own training plan enabling them to develop effective leadership and management knowledge, skills and behaviours; improve their potential for career development and advancement and gain nationally recognised leadership and management qualifications.
Based at UCLan’s Lancashire School of Business and Enterprise (LSBE), Leading Lancashire will be delivered in partnership with Blackburn College, Blackpool and the Fylde College, Burnley College, the East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, Edge Hill University, Lancaster and Morecambe College, Myerscough College, Preston’s College and West Lancashire College. UCLan is the lead partner in the consortium.
UCLan’s Professor Chris Pyke, Executive Dean of Lancashire School of Business and Enterprise, said: “Leading Lancashire has been developed in partnership with key educational institutions from across the county in order to support a main sector of Lancashire’s workforces, employees of SMEs. It’s imperative they have access to the support required to meet their own needs, and this programme presents a fantastic opportunity from which there are many benefits to be had.
“Lancashire’s business community is thriving and has many inspirational leaders, and what we want to do is help SMEs achieve their full potential and bring out the best in their workforces. By equipping more people with improved leadership and management skills, we will be in an even better position to support SMEs with sustainability and growth.”