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Doors open to professional developmentfor regional and remote businessesTHE WA Leaders Connect Series is open to rural and remote WA businesses.Free support, information and low-cost business skills workshops in regional communities.BY SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT CORPORATIONBeing located outside of a capital city doesn’t mean that regional and remote businesses need to miss out on opportunities to thrive and grow, with a subsidised business mentoring program now available.With businesses continuing to feel the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Small Business Development Corporation (SBDC) has collaborated on an innovative new program to ensure regional and remote businesses can access critical professional development and growth opportunities.
As part of the WA Leaders Connect Series, the SBDC is offering subsidised professional development, with a halfprice rate for businesses located more than 100km from Perth CBD.
The online series will help regional businesses identify growth opportunities, innovate and build skills by accessing the latest expertise and knowledge, and connecting with the broader business community. Ninety subsidised places are available exclusively to remote and rural business founders or senior managers.
What is WA Leaders Connect?
The WA Leaders Connect Series complements the SBDC's existing state-wide network of business advisers, Business Local, which offers free support, information and low-cost business skills workshops in regional communities.
The Connect Series brings fresh expertise, industry knowledge and valued connections to regional and remote businesses that have been in business for at least a year.
With a focus on developing business relationships and networks, the Series enables participants to both face a broad range of challenges and opportunities, and drive their personal, professional and business growth.
It is offered by WA Leaders, an organisation that operates a range of initiative designed to benefit companies at different stages of growth.
Under the WA Leaders Connect Series program, participants will receive:
• Monthly workshops and community catch ups As part of ongoing connectedness with the business community, the program offers three online workshops a month, delivered by industry experts, with practical insights about how to make better business decisions. In addition, there is an online forum for Connect Series participants to engage with other members throughout WA for peerbased professional development.
•Leaders Resource Centre and International Leaders app Establishing direct engagement with industry experts to build new relationships and opportunities, members will be able to access to the latest information and content to help them grow, as well as create new business networks.
• ‘Ask the Expert’ platform and inner circle The program acknowledges the importance of being able to draw on the knowledge of experts so offers direct access to answers and information about critical issues and opportunities a business may be facing. Participants can also connect with industry experts for advice on how to make timely and informed decisions about these issues.
• Reciprocal rights To network and help expand their business to new markets, program members will be able to attend one event in the WA Leaders Perth Series each year. Participants will also be eligible for complimentary access to the WA Leaders “Is My Business” website, which shares the knowledge and experience of industry leaders and experts.
To be eligible for the SBDC subsidy, small businesses must be located more than 100km from Perth, have been in business at least a year, be privately owned and focused on upskilling the founder or senior management. The subsidy amounts to half the cost of the program, with a co-contribution of $500 required by participants.