SmarterPreneur Circles – Frequently Asked Questions
How do participants benefit?
Participants in SmarterPreneur programmes experience benefits in two domains, both themselves as business owners and the business itself. This is illustrated below, as the purpose of the programme is to move participants ‘up & to the right’ on the 2×2 matrix.
How does it actually work?
The group, of up to seven people, commits to working together over the course of nine/ten months, meeting regularly for a total of nine three-hour facilitated sessions. Development is continuous as participants are working through challenging and thought-provoking ideas and concepts in between the sessions, while interacting in a structured way with the other group members.
The sessions are held in The Hayfield Manor Hotel, The Maryborough Hotel and at the National Software Centre, Cork. A set of specific dates and times is specially arranged to best suit each individual group.
What is it like?
It’s unconventional. It’s stimulating. It generates alternative and fresh perspectives. It opens up productive conversations and brings the very best in business thinking right into the room through innovative use of classic and emerging material.
It’s active and transformative. It forces you to sit up and get involved. Those who get the most from these circles tend to be progressive, open to challenge and ready to embrace new and unexpected ideas.
What commitment is required?
Participants tend to regard their programme work as being as important as anything else they are doing in the management of their business. The timing of each session is agreed clearly on the calendar in advance and is held as a sacred time to make significant progress on the business.
The sessions are held in either morning (9.45-12.45) or afternoon (2-5) slots.
It’s not the kind of programme where you can dip in and out and ‘catch up on the notes’. The experiential nature of the sessions means each one is unique in its own right and works best when all are in attendance. Occasionally, of course, life throws up unexpected events causing people to miss a session. A system has been developed to ensure the impact is minimal.
How much does it cost?
The full fee for the programme is €1490, which is all inclusive.
Understanding the realities of cash flow for small businesses, the payment system has evolved to meet participants needs and works as follows: to get on the waiting list requires a deposit of €300; when the circle is formed there is an option to pay in two invoices of €595, one at the start and one half-way through, or to set up a direct debit for 10 months of €119 per month.
The €300 deposit is refundable if, for whatever reason, a suitable group is not available within six months.
What areas of learning are covered?
We tackle the most significant issues facing any small business owner. We work to view the business from the owner’s perspective, on developing the mindset and habits that offer the best chance of success and on strengthening the business model.
We use material from writers such as Steve Blank, Eric Ries, Ash Maurya, Chuck Blakeman, Michael Gerber, Carol Dweck, Peter Sims, Michael Port, Simon Sinek, Tony Schwartz and Charles Duhigg.