Member Event

Advance into Business - Online

Thu 28 Jan, 2021 - Thu 15 Apr, 2021
09:00 - 12:30
Advance into Business - Online

What is included in the programme?

  • 6 training workshops covering key business areas
  • Dedicated support in writing your business plan 
  • Professional business support from experienced advisors and expert speakers

This is a fully-funded course - a £50 refundable booking fee applies. Once you have completed the entire programme, you will receive your booking fee back. Places for this programme are limited so book early to avoid disappointment.

If you would like to discuss the programme or have any queries, please contact Colbea on 01206 548833 or email



Workshop 1 - Thursday 28 January 2021: Values and Transferable Skills

The first workshop is all about getting to know your mentor, trainer and fellow candidates, who you will be building relationships with throughout this journey as you support each other. You will uncover why you want to set up your own business. Your trainer will provide the tools needed to mentally prepare you for changing your current reality and taking your idea from plan to profit; engaging with your vision and core values. 

Workshop 2 - Thursday 11 February 2021: Developing Your Personal Brand

Workshop 2 will help you to build credibility and visibility and gain the confidence to get started. You will learn how to develop a strategy using social media, with a focus on LinkedIn. The aim of this workshop is to help you build confidence in communication and start building your brand.

Workshop 3 - Thursday 25 February 2021: The Business Planning Process

This workshop is centred around your business idea; relating your personal purpose to the business purpose and validating your idea with research and activity. You will develop a strong business plan covering; market, reach, finance, ecological sustainability and the means of learning. This workshop will also cover what start-up financing is available, and an introduction to the nine building blocks of the Business Model Canvas (BMC) and how we use it to define the narrative of our business.

Workshop 4 - Thursday 11 March 2021: Achieving Operational Excellence

During this workshop you will be presented with a series of tools and approaches that underpin your strategy as a business or freelancer, including setting up; managing money; budgeting for the business; marketing management systems, platforms and umbrella organisations for the freelance lifestyle.

Workshop 5 - Thursday 25 March 2021: Ready-Steady-Go

Covering the bases and starting to trade, this workshop is about the customer journey, building a team and leadership. You will learn how to create brand loyalty and a business that makes customers feel part of something. This includes what key metrics you should be monitoring and how you can embed learning into the business. A 90-day strategy document will be created, of actions and deliverables.

Workshop 6 - Thursday 15 April 2021: Reflections on the Journey

The final workshop will teach you how to manage growth and where to go from here. You will think about an exit plan and why this matters, as well as why it’s important to constantly assess the current business model by using the BMC. The goal for you after completion of this course is to continue innovating and gathering new customers to continue developing the business.



Trainer: James Cracknell - SFEDI accredited business advisor James Cracknell has been working in this capacity across Essex and Suffolk for the past 6 years. He also has experience in establishing co-operative, social enterprise and charity organisations. He has worked with Colbea and MENTA in Suffolk as a business advisor and mentor. James has close ties with the University of Essex and has facilitated their I-Teams programme for the last 2 years.

Mentor: Mandeep Gabhari - Mandeep has run numerous businesses within the hospitality sector ranging from restaurants to event management. Mandeep has also undertaken several voluntary roles as a steward, taught business in Spain, and is a Trustee Director for Vision Redbridge. Since 2003, he has been a mentor and business speaker on the Prince’s Trust’s Enterprise Programme and is a Colbea Business Advisor.


All workshops will take place from 9.00am - 12.30pm online. 

This course is funded by the European Union European Social Fund.

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