Growth Advantage Programme
“Our incredibly successful Growth Advantage Programme was launched in 2015 and fully utilises Strathclyde’s distinctive approach towards executive education and development. As a place of useful learning, we draw on our research to focus on real actions in an applied setting, we use toolkits that can be applied immediately in the workplace combined with the power of peer-to-peer learning among our participants. This proven format has been successful in many different environments and is the basis for our impactful engagement in industry, society, and policy.” David Hillier, Executive Dean, Strathclyde Business School.
Aimed at established businesses with a minimum £1 million turnover with real growth ambitions, the Growth Advantage Programme is led by peer learning expert John Anderson and delivered by Scotland's top entrepreneurship faculty at the Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship at Strathclyde Business School. It is unique in Scotland and offers a fresh alternative to more established growth programmes only available in England and overseas.
To get the most from the programme, we recommend that participants should be the founding managing director, chief executive or principal of the business with a significant ownership interest. Over 90 companies have taken part in the Growth Advantage Programme in six cohorts to date and have had an average of over £2 million in annual revenues and 25 employees at the start of the programme. They have come from all over Scotland, from a wide range of sectors and include companies started from scratch, bought and multi-generation family businesses - all with ambitions to grow.
The substantial impact of the programme on each cohort - average annualised growth in employment and sales across the cohort exceeding the OECD high growth threshold of 20% - has been credited by participants to various factors. These included having greater clarity of the business, sharpening their value proposition, extracting more value from current operations, creating synergy from their portfolio of products and services, focusing on core values, measuring activities, having a greater focus on more valuable customers and changes in structures and people.
The benefits of the programme have been realised not simply in terms of business performance but also by the impact on the individuals who cited having greater confidence, more energy, more growth orientation and growing networks as a result of taking part.
The overall impact of the Growth Advantage Programme was recognised in 2016 by the award of a Gold Small Business Charter mark, making Strathclyde Business School one of only five UK business schools to hold the UK's top accreditation and the only one in Scotland. In November 2020, the Growth Advantage Programme received full endorsement from the ScaleUp Institute. Having both of these key accreditations, in addition to the traditional business school “triple accreditation”, is extremely rare and provides strong validation of the impact of our work with ambitious owners and leaders.