Business Development Evolution

Business Development Evolution Group Photo

Delegates attending the first session of the business development programme
organised by the Centre for Leadership Performance are pictured with Sarah
Glass, the Centre's Marketing and Business Development Manager and John
Grainger, Managing Director of Invest in Cumbria (front, second and third from

Business development managers within Cumbrian companies and organisations learned new skills and strategies in a high level 2-day workshop programme organised by the Centre for Leadership Performance.

The Business Development Evolution programme took place at Energus and the group included delegates from Lakes College, Lake District Hotels, Energy Solutions, Story Group, Story Contracting, NIS Ltd, Eden Housing Association, David Allen, Gen II Training and NW Recycling.

It followed on from the Business Growth Masterclass held by the Centre last year. Centre Chief Executive Al Mather explained: "Ian Cooper presented a lot of exciting ideas during the masterclass and inspired the audience with his vision of business growth. This programme aims to build on that inspiration by equipping business people with practical skills and sharing proven business development processes."

The Centre for Leadership Performance receives funding from Nuclear Management Partners to provide high quality leadership and management support to firms, organisations and the wider Cumbrian community.

The business development programme was supported by Britain's Energy Coast, Campus, and Business Cluster. It is partly sponsored by Invest in Cumbria whose Managing Director John Grainger believes more professional business development is vital to the commercial future of the county. He said: "It is vital that Cumbrian companies have the opportunity to invest in their workforces, and the training and development needs to be delivered right here in the county so it is easily accessible. This is an important asset to enable companies to attract and retain high calibre people, and no organisation is better placed to deliver that vital support than the Centre for Leadership Performance.

The programme delivered by the PACE Partnership included workshops, coaching and exercises spanning stakeholder, client and supplier relationships, collaboration and joint venture working can aid individual businesses in Cumbria, the importance of managed business development activity, and tips on new business target selection.

Business Development and Project Delivery Director Gill Marsden was one of three staff from specialist engineering company NIS Ltd attending the programme and she welcomed the opportunity to refresh and enhance skills without the need to go outside Cumbria. She explained: "Our company is currently involved in restructuring to deliver an even better service to a wider range of clients within and beyond the nuclear sector. We have our own internal business development processes and mentoring but it is extremely useful to gain further specialist professional support and also to mix with other companies and share ideas."

Commercial Development Officer Liz Parkes is responsible for promoting wider use of the facilities at Lakes College by businesses and the community, and as a venue for conferences and other events. She said: "Developing the relationships with clients and potential business users is one of our priorities for expanding the use of facilities. You always take something useful from these sorts of sessions – whether it is completely new ideas or a different approach to a familiar strategy or process."

Jane Clingan is Business Manager at the Workington office of accountants David Allen which has seen a steady growth in business since it was established 4 years ago. She commented: "Most of our clients come through referrals but one of our priorities now is seeking new business within the tourist sector in the national park. I joined the programme to refresh our ideas about how the business can make inroads into those new markets, and continue its growth strategy in a structured way."

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Britain's Energy Coast

Invest in Cumbria