Cumbria Forum - New Training Opportunity (fully funded)

8th July, 2020

Covid-19 Response Programme: Recovery & Resilience for SMEs

This ERDF programme is fully-funded and is being delivered by Lancaster University Management School through the Cumbria Forum business support project (part of the Cumbria Growth Hub offer) and has  been designed for established Cumbrian SMEs who employ more than 5 members of staff. The programme aims to support ambitious leaders to refocus their business following the coronavirus pandemic. Delegates will explore ways to drive business recovery in the short-term as well as planning for a more resilient long-term future.  We are excited to have several of our Management School academics working with us on the design and delivery of the workshops we have scheduled.


The online programme will run from July, for more information please visit or email [email protected]


Programme dates:

We will deliver the programme online on a Tuesday morning over the following dates: 21st July; 28th July; 4th August; 1st September; and 8th September.

Participation is encouraged at every workshop to get the most out of them and to support you with the activities focused on your business that you will be asked to complete in between workshops.


Specifically, the programme will consist of:

  • Five half-day interactive workshops, delivered fully online via Microsoft Teams (free to access, instructions to follow) every Tuesday morning
  • Each workshop will be delivered to a small group of business leaders, a mix of delegates from Cumbria based SME businesses.  
  • There will be some work assigned to be completed between each session to ensure you can get the most out of the programme.


A brief outline of the programme is as follows (maybe subject to slight change):


Week 1 - The New Normal

1.        Exploring potential socio-economic scenarios (short & long term) – what might the new normal look like?

2.        Start to identify impacts on individual business

3.        Focus on maximising opportunities & minimising threats

Week 2 - Strategic Options

1.       Explore current customer groups and market segments. Look at potential impacts of the Week 1 scenarios on both customers and supply chains

2.        Define core competencies/ capabilities (against criteria eg financial/ physical and human) which will help to inform development opportunities

3.        Exploration of opportunities in market or product development

4.        Development of strategic options and identify the factors and metrics against which these can be appraised.

Week 3 - Business Model Innovation

1.        Look at what changes need to be made within the business to maximise the opportunities and minimise the threats.

2.        Explore internal elements of the business and how they can be adapted; activities, resources and partnerships (e.g. need for digitalisation).

3.        Start to build personal action plan

Week 4 - Enhancing Business Resilience

1.        Becoming agile, lean and cash-rich

2.        Risk Management in practice

3.        Opportunities for further development

4.        Update action plan

Week 5 - Leading the Change & Final Reflection

1.        Leadership styles – what kind of leader does your business need now

2.        Change Management – How to lead the changes you have identified


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