Strategic Economic Solutions (SES) works with both small business and organisations who work with small business to cultivate entrepreneurship in individuals, as well as, more generally in the community. We also work with policy makers at all levels of government to help cultivate a more entrepreneurial and vibrant business environment. In this section of our web site you’ll find information and resources based on our experience working with individuals and organisations both nationally and internationally.

Feasibility studies and business planning for business incubators

Since 1999 SES has worked closely with CREEDA Projects on over 20 feasibility studies for business incubators and/or business support centres around Australia and internationally.

Some of these business incubators have targeted specific business sectors such as Creative Industries, High Tech and Kitchen Incubator Services.

All of our feasibility studies include a comprehensive assessment of market demand, financial viability, management issues and critical success factors. An overview of specific incubation projects can be found in our project archives.

Small business hot spots

A key driver of Australia’s economic growth during the 1990s was the enthusiasm shown by businesses and governments both large and small for outsourcing a wide range of components of their operations.

The kind of work Australians do also changed dramatically during the 1990s. The outstanding feature was the growth in the number of people working in Property and Business Services – and 90% of these were in the Business Services part. This industry sector underpinned business formation and employment growth in Australia during the 1990s. It includes businesses like accountants, lawyers, IT professionals, graphic designers, marketing consultants, and business advisers. Its employment almost doubled in Victoria over the decade, and the story is similar in other states.

From early 2000 the growth in this industry sector slowed, and we started to research to find what would be the next small business hot spot – the next driver of small business formation and growth. A lot of our predictions were correct. We have continued to research and update our workshops. For more information on what we have found and on what we are predicting, have a look at http://www.smallbusinessfutures.com.au

Training for incubator managers

From time to time we have provided training for mangers of potential or new incubators. For example, we undertook training for incubator managers in Nepal and Iran. More information on these projects can be found in our projects archives.

Research into Entrepreneurship

Our work with small businesses lead us to look at the similarities and differences between small businesses and entrepreneurs. Over a number of years we have looked at the characteristics of entrepreneurs, with special emphasis on women and young people. General characteristics that we have found suggest that entrepreneurs are:

generally made not born

not inventors but exploiters of ideas

self motivated

good net workers

moderate risk takers

looking for quick returns on investments of time and money

Interestingly our research on young people suggests that there are similarities between characteristics of entrepreneurs and young people operating business while they are still at school, and these entrepreneurial traits are also characteristic of ‘trouble makers’ in the classroom!

We have used this research to develop a range of tools for stimulating and supporting entrepreneurs including the Springboard Program and the Small business futures workshops.

Much of our research has been published and is publicly available. See our publications section for more information.

Small Business Futures Workshops

Since 2005 SES has run ‘Small Business Futures’ Workshops. These workshops use the latest economic and social trends data (customised to the local context) and were developed as a means of engaging with small business operators on the future of their communities, regions and businesses.

Since 2005, SES delivered over 50 workshop across Eastern Australia to many enthusiastic small business operators!

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