A standard Outset service includes the delivery of two core programmes – ‘Introduction to Enterprise’, a series of 8 x 3 hour workshops designed to help people answer the question, ‘Is enterprise for me?’, followed by ‘Business Start Up’, another set of 8 x 3 hour workshops with a more specific focus on delivering core start-up support to new business owners.
These programmes are complemented with 1:1 coaching sessions with our Enterprise Advisors, and inclusion in our business support programme, ensuring ongoing engagement within our community once clients have gone on to launch their new enterprises.
Our “Rubik’s cube” approach
Every area that we work in – and indeed every client we support – has its own unique needs, which is why we aim to ensure we can offer a flexible model that, like a Rubik’s cube, can be arranged and re-arranged to ‘fit’ your objectives, budgets and timescales.
Our clients are from diverse backgrounds and every one of them has different needs. We therefore deliver a modular programme that is flexible, tailored and personalised. Because the Outset programme operates on a rolling basis, clients can join the programme at whichever stage is appropriate for them.
We aim to actively challenge the perceived stereotypical idea of who should be a business owner, engaging with those furthest away from economic and social inclusion such as: the long-term unemployed, ex-offenders, BME, under 25’s, women and people with physical and mental issues or disabilities. Traditional business support provision has never fully reached these demographics.
Flexible, inclusive practices
Some clients require a more intensive approach, which we deliver through extended engagement windows and greater 1:1 coaching, while others join our accelerated or ‘fast-track’ streams, allowing us to deliver our core programmes in condensed formats or over shorter periods of time.
We offer flexible morning, afternoon, evening and Saturday workshops at parent-friendly times, and where possible, there is also support for child-care and travel costs for those in hardship. Learning takes place within a friendly, highly interactive, mutually supportive and creative environment, and our locally recruited Enterprise Advisors ensure that clients respect each other and learn from their peers who are facing the same challenges.
Our outreach activities are a core element of the Outset approach and ensure we can deliver our programmes from any suitable venue or location, ensuring that individuals living in rural areas or with limited access to public transport don’t miss out. Of course, as well as being a valuable support tool, our Outset Online e-learning programme also allows us to work with individuals who are unable to attend workshops, whether due to caring responsibilities, physical or mental disabilities or other factors.