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As Scotland cautiously emerges from lockdown, many businesses will require support in adapting their operations to the new normal. Those who find the changes daunting have an opportunity to get tailored advice from senior business leaders and entrepreneurs, as Scottish Business Cares (SBC) opens its mentoring programme for the next round of applicants.

SBC is a goodwill collective delivered by the Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC) in partnership with the Scottish Government that aims to provide guidance around the various issues businesses are facing because of the outbreak. While the collective initially launched with a series of webinars, the crux of SBC’s offerings is a one-to-one mentoring service for Scottish organisations who need more tailored support.

Webinars in July and August will provide more information on the application process and what organisations can expect; details are available on the SBRC website.

Jude McCorry, CEO of SBRC, said: “Our mentoring programme is a fantastic opportunity for organisations to get immediate, specific support to overcome the challenges brought on to their operations by COVID-19.

“Belinda Roberts, founder of WeDO Scotland and member of our Scottish Business Cares Advisory Board is running the mentoring programme for us. She has been a wonderful resource in connecting businesses with leaders and entrepreneurs that have the relevant experience and knowledge.”

Belinda Roberts added: “SMEs are the lifeblood of the Scottish economy and it is essential that they are given every advantage to ensure their ongoing viability and success. Expert advice and support for these companies as they emerge from lockdown will be an essential lifeline for many who are facing considerable challenges during these unparalleled times.

“We are delighted our mentoring programme will help more Scottish businesses make a smooth recovery with guidance from experts in fields including frameworks to aid recovery, realignment of products and services, investment, legal and financial management, and grant funding. This programme will make a tangible difference to businesses and help bolster the Scottish economy on the road to recovery.”

The mentors are successful entrepreneurs and senior business leaders with previous experience of economic crises gained during the 2008 financial crash and a strong track record of business growth and success. They will also use their extensive networks to enable introductions that will benefit mentees.

Participants will have an initial meeting with Belinda Roberts to discuss the challenges they are facing and identify the most immediate support and guidance required to benefit and fast-track their path to recovery. They will subsequently have a total of six hours' virtual mentoring from their matched mentor over a period of six weeks.

This is the second intake round, following an initial launch in June. Approximately 50 organisations have already been matched with mentors.

Kate Buckle
Article by Kate Buckle
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