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An Enterprising Community A presentation to the ENABLE Conference 04 July 2008 By Rachel Elliott Ibstock Community Enterprises Ltd With thanks to New Economics.

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Presentation on theme: "An Enterprising Community A presentation to the ENABLE Conference 04 July 2008 By Rachel Elliott Ibstock Community Enterprises Ltd With thanks to New Economics."— Presentation transcript:

1 An Enterprising Community A presentation to the ENABLE Conference 04 July 2008 By Rachel Elliott Ibstock Community Enterprises Ltd With thanks to New Economics Foundation, Plugging the Leaks

2 Elements of an enterprising community 1.An enterprising cultureAn enterprising culture 2.A diverse enterprise ecology – i.e enterprise mixA diverse enterprise ecology – i.e enterprise mix 3.Good levels of business support infrastructureGood levels of business support infrastructure 4.To be a place where people desire to beTo be a place where people desire to be

3 1. An enterprising culture Local people: Get involved in decisions that concern their community to ensure that its development meets their needs and priorities. Feel things can happen and take action towards making things happen; Have an understanding of the local economy and of existing markets and opportunities and an ability to spot and exploit gaps in supply and demand; Generally view self-employment as a positive phenomenon; Have the ability to diversify and innovate to accommodate change and take advantage of new opportunities; Feel comfortable with uncertainty and taking managed risks.

4 2. Enterprise ecology This means that the community includes: Small, medium sized and large businesses: some supplying local needs to provide a stable market that is less vulnerable to outside influences. Also need to be businesses which have links through the supply chain to other markets or to businesses outside the area; Social enterprises creating a range of products and services not met by the commercial market; Excellent inter-business networking: Strong partnership building and alliances between public, private, local community and voluntary sectors; Attractors into the area; Skill/personnel mix: The right mixture between entrepreneurs and manager/leaders; A variety of sources of inward investment linked to local business so that they are embedded in the local economy.

5 Attractors and Detractors Some businesses do more for the local economy than meets the eye. Shops with or without pulling power play a big role in bringing people to the area – or keeping them away - regardless of the size of their own turnover. Classic attractors are: Post offices Banks Tea shops Stores with high reputation Initiatives that give the town a good name

6 3. Enterprise/business support infrastructure This includes: The willingness of business support agencies, the local authority and other agencies to be creative in how they support small businesses in their development; Access to a variety of appropriate financing schemes; Information resources which provide what is necessary to different members of a community with different needs; An agency to help train and support new businesses and social enterprises; Premises of different sizes to meet business needs; Reasonable accommodation for workers and/or adequate transport/parking infrastructure; Appropriate skills training programmes.

7 4. Desirable place to be Finally, enterprising communities need to be considered by their inhabitants as a desirable place to live! Otherwise, any entrepreneurial energy is likely to be spent trying to improve the very basic facilities in the area…or in creating a strategy for leaving the area! You know you are in a desirable place when there is: A sense of pride in the area; A low level of crime; A good education system; A good transport network; Clean streets; A certain level of social capital or trust within the community: markets cannot function without this.

8 Tools for Local Economic Renewal Bizz Fizz – an economic coach at the heart of the local community Local Alchemy – Regenerating a community from within, recognising and utilising the resources a community already has Plugging the leaks and Local Multiplier 3 Local Works – campaigning for the implementation of the sustainable communities bill Every Action Counts – support for voluntary and community groups


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