Workshops offer entrepreneurs Gateway to successful start-up

If your resolution for the new year is to make your great business idea or fledgling enterprise into a 2012 success story, Business Gateway, Selkirk Office is able to help.

Figures show that the first few months of the year are the busiest time for Business Gateway as more people consider making changes to their lifestyle, including starting up on their own.

At the start of 2012, entrepreneurs throughout the Scottish Borders are being given an extra boost with the launch of a series of free workshops designed to add benefit to businesses at no extra cost.

A total of 172 workshops – ranging from honing your financial management skills to developing your marketing knowledge and finding out the basics of business start-up – were run in 2011 with more than 600 unique local entrepreneurs gaining invaluable advice during the seminars. Over the year, more than 275 local businesses started with help from Business Gateway, Selkirk Office.

Last year’s events programme featured the very popular pilot workshop, Social Networking for Business, which will continue into 2012 along with additional titles on a similar theme such as TripAdvisor for Business.

Niall Whyte, managing director, the Real Firewood Company, said “I approached Business Gateway not long after I set up as I wasn’t sure how the business would grow and needed some guidance.

“Its e-commerce workshops were fantastic and now, as we expand into new markets, we are continuing to work with the organisation to help simplify a number of administration processes. It has been refreshing to work with our adviser as she understands the real world and the hurdles businesses like mine face. Her advice has been second to none.”

Lesley Kelso, principal officer (business) economic development environment and infrastructure, Scottish Borders Council said: “These free workshops are a great way to improve your business judgement and ensure that your company is best placed to thrive in the marketplace.”

Sandra Campbell, business adviser, added: “Over the years, Business Gateway has assisted thousands of local businesses, and through our series of workshops, online advice and one-to-one support, they have found the tools needed to make their commercial venture a success.”

Workshop schedule

January

Business Start-Up – Marketing, Tuesday 24, 9.30am-12.30pm.

Getting the marketing right for your business is crucial to its success. This workshop will help you to understand your competitors, identify your customers and understand the things you need to consider for effective marketing.

Business Start-Up – Finance, Tuesday 31, 9.30am-12.30pm.

Good financial management is essential. Learn to manage a profit-and-loss account; produce a cashflow statement; understand the meaning of working capital; describe the main sources of finance; and understand the different legal structures of a business.

February

Marketing Your Business on TripAdvisor, Thursday 16,9.30am-12.30pm

This half day workshop is an in-depth look at how you can effectively market and manage your business on TripAdvisor and will benefit any tourism-related business.

To find out more about how Business Gateway can help you set up and develop your business, visit www.bgborders.com. Alternatively call your local Business Gateway office directon 0844 875 0171.