Taking Your Business Forward is The Icehouse’s inaugural interactive eLearning programme and enables owners to tackle core business functions in a secure and stimulating virtual environment.
So why launch an e-Learning programme now? ‘Owners of NZ small businesses are facing unprecedented times. We want to support these owners and their businesses to survive and thrive during and after the COVID-19 crisis by offering something unique, tangible and, of real lasting value. And we want it to be accessible no matter where in NZ you are,’ says Liz Wotherspoon, Head of Growth at The Icehouse.
‘We have been supporting owner-managers for nearly 20 years and when we headed into lockdown we asked them what they needed most from us. We went straight to work in response to their answers. In this time of uncertainty and change, owners are facing difficult challenges in the areas of leadership and communication, financial readiness and technology and digital adoption. We developed this interactive 3-month programme to provide business owners with the opportunity to rethink aspects of their business and reset for the future.’
‘This will not be a sit-back-and-listen experience,' adds Liz. 'We’ll draw on our deep experience with SMEs over many years and we’ve incorporated relevant elements of our flagship Owner Manager Programme.
'Sessions will be interactive and inclusive and will at times be deliberately provocative and challenging. Each element of the programme has been designed to keep owners interested and engaged as they think about what they need to do to rethink, retool and refocus their business.’
| A lifeline for businesses
Taking Your Business Forward (TYBF) encourages owners to think differently about what their business can look like in the future. Following the announcement in late May by the NZ Government that New Zealanders face a possible four further weeks under alert level 2, TYBF provides a critical lifeline for businesses in need of expert business advice and guidance.
TYBF combines online content, facilitated sessions and self-moderated peer group discussions, giving owners nationwide, practical sessions with a top Icehouse facilitator, subject-matter experts and guest speakers from the owner-manager community.
| What will be covered?
Customers and Offering – Understand what’s important to your customers and how you can align your product or service to meet this demand
Leadership and Communication – Improve your effectiveness as a leader in managing change and advancing continuity by assessing your personal leadership and communication challenges
Build Resilience – How to build resilience, personal health and wellbeing and why it’s vital for a successful business
Knowing Your Numbers – Develop a better understanding of accounting and finance basics and apply these fundamental principles to your business
Creating and Delivering Value – Discover ways to create and deliver more value through your organisation and also as part of a wider business network
The Future of Work is Here – Explore innovative and best practice methods, tools and technology to introduce more efficiency in your business through digital processes
| Post-TYBF aftercare and initiatives
As all previous Icehouse participants appreciate, one of our strengths is that you don’t just finish your programme and never hear from us again. We place considerable emphasis on building relationships with our alumni and continuing to help them on their journey – whether it’s through investment, further training and coaching, or opening doors to get you in front of the right people.
So you’ll develop a 90-day Reset Plan during the course, to leverage all the practical skills and advice you picked up on TYBF. You will also receive plenty of free and TYBF-exclusive materials which can be implemented well beyond the programme.
Sign up here and learn more about Taking Your Business Forward.
For more business ownership and leadership advice and the latest discussion around COVID-19, check out more of our blogs.