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Assistant Director, Jennifer Jones-Rigby, receives Goldman Sachs Award

Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses is an innovative fully funded program designed to unlock the economic and job creation potential of small businesses and social enterprises from across the Midlands. The programme is delivered by Aston Business School in partnership with the Goldman Sachs Foundation and is targeted at business owners who have clear ambitions to expand their small business or social enterprises.

Our Assistant Director Jennifer Jones-Rigby attended the course from September 2014 to March 2015. It was delivered over 12 sessions, amounting to approximately 100 hours of learning. Each session taught practical skills that could immediately be applied, and throughout the programme every participant was able to develop a customised Growth Plan to direct their organisation’s business strategy and expansion.

Commenting on her experience, Jennifer says:

The reason I applied to the 10,000 Small Businesses program was to acquire skills that would help me to guide Health Exchange towards its full operational and social potential.

The online application process was highly demanding; it began with an initial expression of interest, before submission of an online form that included checks on myself and some financial details of the business.

The Dragons Den style panel which followed was a little daunting; it involved a long interview and some very pertinent questions about my vision for Health Exchange and how I envisaged us developing over the next five years. This was a useful opportunity to present my views on how our success as a business would be coupled with huge advantages to the local area including job creation, economic growth, and market expansion.

The course itself has equipped me with the confidence to help accelerate growth for Health Exchange both in terms of income and geography. It has helped me to explore the critical areas of business development that are available to us and shown me the importance of striking a balance between strategic and operational goals.

The great benefit of participation in this course was the opportunity to network and liaise with a variety of leaders from disparate industries, both public and private sector; I worked with 30-plus different businesses all creating and selling different products and services so it was a great chance to exchange philosophies.

The 10,000 Small Businesses UK Program has been an enlightening and thoroughly enjoyable experience; one which invites you to analyse and assess your business objectively. If you think that this course could benefit you and your business then feel free to contact me for more information.

Jennifer Jones-Rigby 

Goldman Sachs

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