Oct 08 2014

Durham Business Skills Builder has launched

NORTH East businesses are being invited to sign up for one of the most comprehensive packages of business development workshops ever launched in the region.

The Durham Business Skills Builder will help people to learn, develop and grow via a series of workshops focusing on key skills such as strategy, sales, marketing, finance, human resources and leadership.

The programme – for which part funding is available – will be delivered by experienced practitioners, all of whom own and manage their own companies.

It was launched at the Jury’s Inn on the Gateshead Quayside, at an event attended by representatives from more than 50 businesses.

The programme’s co-ordinator Jessica Trotman said: “There is already a buzz building around the Durham Business Skills Builder as we believe it is the first time that such a comprehensive and flexible training programme has been developed.

“After speaking to businesses across the region, we identified a gap for a full but flexible programme of training that very much puts business skills at its heart but is led by practitioners with years of experience, practical knowledge and ideas within their own areas of expertise.”

durham business group skills launch

(left to right) Amanda Dixon; Joanne Dolezal; Grant Henderson; Jessica Trotman (Durham Business Skills Builder); Nevil Tynemouth; Ford Henderson; Jackie Wade.

Durham Business Skills Builder has been set up by the not-for-profit organisation Durham Business Group which has been helping business owners and managers to develop, grow and succeed for more than 30 years. The first programme will run between October and December with 15 workshops focusing on sales and marketing. That will be followed in the new-year by sessions looking at business leadership and management.

The autumn programme includes themes of getting the message across; making connections; making the sale; future sales; and winning teams, with individual workshops focusing on digital marketing, press releases, phone based selling and word-of-mouth marketing.

The Durham Business Skills Builder is particularly aimed at owners of small businesses and their employees and allows participants to pick and choose however many sessions they like. All of the workshops will be delivered from the Durham Business Group’s headquarters at Portland House in Durham.

Part funding for the workshops – which are priced from £36 per session – is available from a range of sources including the North East Business Support Fund (NBSL); Growth Accelerator; Investment for Growth; and the Rural Growth Network.

Jessica added: “We have put together a fantastic programme to help business owners and their staff to learn, prosper and grow. It was very important to have workshops led by people with their own experience of running businesses so that we know they understand and share the core skills that are vital to progression.

“I am also delighted that we have been supported by a range of funding partners which can help meet the costs of the courses.”

For more information about the Durham Business Skills Builder, please visit  or call 0191 375 5700.


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