Author: Brendan Hastie, Assistant Business Librarian/Researcher
As we enter the new year, we at the Small Business Research and Enterprise Centre (SBREC) want to wish you a happy and healthy 2023! Emerging out of the shadow of the pandemic and a turbulent political year which saw three different Prime Ministers and the death of a widely respected monarch in Queen Elizabeth II, we are reminded of the determinable spirit of all those who call the United Kingdom home. After such a long year, the holiday season represented a great time for all of us to reflect on what we achieved in 2022, yet it also presented us with an opportunity to re-evaluate our personal and professional goals and what we want to accomplish over the course of the next twelve months. What do we want to do? How do we want to live? What are you passionate about? What kind of work do you want to do?
It may sound a bit cliché to answer these questions at the beginning of the New Year since they are quite reminiscent of a New Years’ Resolution, but for those of you who want to own and operate your own business, there is no better time to start answering these questions. Perhaps you have always had a business idea, but never knew how to get it off the ground. Maybe you are someone who has always had an entrepreneurial spirit, the gift of ingenuity, and a desire for autonomy, but struggled to find the resources to channel that industriousness into a tangible business plan. Or maybe, just maybe, the only thing you need is that little push of encouragement to finally take that leap of faith and start your own professional journey.
At the Small Business Research and Enterprise Centre, our purpose is to guide you through that journey and help you fulfil your limitless potential. We take great pride in being an accessible public resource that provides exemplary service and truly engages with our wide network of entrepreneurs, SMEs, small business owners, and those of you that have an idea. That’s all it really takes, an idea that can be cultivated through your own hard work and expertise, but with the assistance of a support network and access to our resources in order to take that idea and transform it into a reality.
To ensure you have all the support necessary, we offer two different types of memberships. The SBREC membership gives you access to reliable data, market research and business information. If you have been watching Dragon’s Den, you’ll see how important this can be for the success of your business.
Our first membership option is the Free Access membership, which includes the following:
- Remote access to ‘Business Source Premier’ – ‘COBRA’ – ‘European Newsstream’ – ‘Exporters Almanac’ databases.
- Access to our full range of databases at the Centre.
- Dedicated customer support via email.
- Free workspace and Wi-Fi at the Centre.
- Access to our regular newsletter.
- Be the first to know about upcoming events
Additionally, the convenience of our members is paramount, so we also provide a subscription membership for an annual payment. You will have access to everything listed above, but with the added benefit of remote access to the following databases:
- Global Trade Tracker
- Global Data
- Alf Connect
Lastly, community engagement and networking are two crucial elements for SMEs, prestart-ups, and entrepreneurs to succeed, so we host regular online and in-person events, ranging from weekly webinars to networking events at our centre located at Guildhall, City of London. It is a wonderful opportunity where you will be able to meet like-minded individuals, talk with potential partners, and apply some of the industry knowledge gained from our events into your own business strategy. Just to provide an example of some of the webinars we host, some of our upcoming January events include:
- ‘Journaling: Powerup through critical thinking’ with Nicky Torode, 17/01/2023, 10:30 – 11:30
- ‘Introduction to business start-up’ with Wendy Foster, 18/01/2023, 14:30 – 15:30
Our full list of business support webinars is available on our Eventbrite page.
Admittedly, the challenge of transforming an idea into a new business can seem daunting, if not impossible. However, the support we provide at the Small Business and Enterprise Centre will undoubtedly make your entrepreneurial journey that much more fruitful. We can channel that newfound motivation into a detailed business plan and jumpstart your road to success. While it may only be January, let’s get started on making 2023 a year you’ll never forget.