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SME Leaders Programme

Six-month programme at the Royal Academy of Engineering supporting individuals in executive roles in high-growth UK engineering and technology SMEs to develop your leadership skills.

This six-month programme, run twice a year, supports individuals in executive roles in high-growth engineering and technology SMEs to develop their leadership skills.

If you have plans to scale-up your enterprise and want guidance on navigating the challenges and growing pains, then this programme is for you.

What we’re looking for

  • Decision-makers (both engineers and non-engineers) in engineering and
    technology SMEs with an ambitious vision to grow
  • Your company must have raised at least £500,000 equity investment
    (from inception) and/or have a turnover of at least £200,000 in the
    previous 12 months (not inc. grants or consultancy)
  • Your company must be based in the UK to be eligible for this award –
    applicants from any nationality are eligible as long as you have the right
    to work in the UK
  • We are committed to improving diversity and inclusion in engineering,
    and we especially welcome applications from those currently
    underrepresented within the sector.

What should you expect from the SME Leaders programme?

This programme is designed to prepare you to scale up your company. It’s an opportunity to refine your strategy and enhance your leadership skills while continuing to work on your business.

Accelerate your growth

Whatever your focus for the six months – whether it’s building your team, developing a strategy for growth or improving your management skills – we’re here to help you. As well as providing one-to-one coaching and mentoring, we will promote your business, host a variety of networking events and introduce you to Academy Fellows, investors, industry experts and other entrepreneurs that are designed to help you grow.

What do we expect from you?

We are a charity, so we don’t charge for our services or take any equity. We expect you to commit a few hours per month to the programme. The requirements on the programme are

  • Attend one coaching session per month lasting 1.5 hours (compulsory)
  • Attend at least three events or workshops over the six months (compulsory)
  • We recommend meeting with your mentor once a month (but this isn’t compulsory)

What we offer

  • A grant of up to £10,000 to pay for leadership courses of your choice
  • Expert business mentoring
  • One-to-one personal development coaching
  • Workshops, roundtables, speaker events
  • Access to the Taylor Centre, our co-working and meeting space in central London
  • PR and IP support
  • Travel and accommodation expenses covered for all activities

This programme is funded by BEIS. We do not take equity or charge fees. All support is at no cost to you or your company.