The 6th of December is Small Business Saturday in the UK – a chance for supporters and proprietors alike to get involved and support SME’s, who accounted for almost 50% of the UK’s economy last year, according to data from the UK government. To that end, we’ve rounded up a list of events and online resources that can help you on your quest to finally launch that business:
The good folks behind this initiative have been working hard to spread the word about SMEs all across the UK. For the past few weeks they’ve been featuring a different small business on their website under the category Small Biz 100, organising talks and drumming up as much noise as they can on social media. The Small Business Saturday bus has been winding its way all over the country and will be in London this week. Get involved by making a point to shop local on the day and getting active on your social networks. There are several communities hosting business gatherings to support the event. We’ve rounded up a few below:
Birmingham Library will be running a selection of seminars and one to ones for people interested in starting their own business. You can find out more on the library’s own website.
Bristol are celebrating Small Business Saturday with a range of markets across the city. You can find more details about the markets, as well as an adult learning open day event, here.
Cardiff are using small business Saturday to bring back their Christmas market. Hosting over 125 small businesses, mostly from the Cardiff area, they want it to be a showcase for buying locally produced items.
Edinburgh is using Small Business Saturday to promote both the high street and local independent shops. They’ll be running a series of workshops and pop-ups. Click here for more info.
Manchester will be holding a pop-up market in their Northern quarter to support small businesses, with a range of foods, crafts and art – the perfect place for those unique Christmas gifts!
As well as a special Christmas market, Newcastle City Council will be holding a training and employment roadshow that will supply impartial and specialist advice to small business owners.
Sheffield are running a free digital master class in conjunction with Google on Friday 5th December. Google plan to offer advice on making the most of the Internet and growing your business online.
Got a creative business idea but not sure how to pitch or where to go for support? The School for Creative Start ups could be just what you’re looking for. Each year, they take on a group of budding entrepreneurs in various artistic fields, offering guidance on a wide range of subjects (finance, marketing) over the course of 9 months. It can be daunting trying to launch something on your own, so the idea of doing it with a group of like-minded people is appealing for many. There is a cost involved but bursaries are available. The Sheffield location is accepting applications until December 15th so if you live in that area, get writing!
We’ve highlighted Enterprise Nation in the past – with good reason. Founder Emma Jones has been a champion for small businesses from early on in her career. Enterprise Nation hosts in-person and online events that cover everything from launching a beauty business to PR skills for entrepreneurs. The company also arranges regular meet-ups for those interested in starting a business to get together and chat, some of which are geared to a specific industry. Their website is a great source of info for everything from business basics to recommended reading. Emma’s been actively involved in the lead-up to Small Business Saturday.
Want to get the kind of education that prestigious MBA students do but not up for forking over a wad of cash and precious time? It won’t replace a two year degree, but London Business School hosts a series of events featuring successful entrepreneurs every month, from September to June. The lectures take place on campus in Regent’s Park, London – and if you can’t make it down or don’t live nearby, you can listen to all of the talks as podcasts online . They’re free to attend but you do have to sign up before hand. You can find out more information and sign up on the TELL Series website.
You’ve probably heard about the Prince’s Trust – they boast a storied history of running enterprise initiatives for young people . If you’re between the ages of 13 and 30 and UK-based, there’s a good chance that you’re eligible for one of their schemes. The Prince’s Trust runs workshops, training programmes and also offers a number of grants to individuals and groups wishing to start their own businesses. As with Enterprise Nation’s meet-ups, being in a group of like-minded people can help spur on creativity and keep you motivated to reach your goal.
We’ll be supporting our many small businesses all day Saturday, so make sure you join in the conversation on Twitter and Facebook.
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