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BTEC Higher National Diploma Planning for Growth

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BTEC Higher National Diploma Planning for Growth

This unit provides students with an appreciation of how small and medium enterprises (SMEs) develop and grow. Students will learn about and apply techniques for identifying opportunities for growth, and appraise options for achieving growth, including via collaboration. Students will also learn about the sources of investment finance and consider how an SME attracts investors. They will gain an understanding of the options for SMEs in terms of exit or, for family businesses, succession, and be able to appreciate the importance of making informed choices when choosing routes to growth and have an understanding of the potential risks vs rewards involved with growth. 

Learning Outcomes: 

By the end of this unit a student will be able to: 

1.    Analyse the key considerations SMEs should consider when evaluating growth opportunities. 

2.    Assess the various methods through which organisations access funding and when to use different types of funding. 

3.    Develop a business plan (including financials) and communicate how you intend scaling up a business. 

4.    Assess the various ways a small business owner can exit the business and the implications of each option. 

BTEC HND in Business/ Unit 42: Planning for Growth /Jan 2019    

This same allocation model applies to investments in growth. Some ways to grow are easier than others. Cutting costs with new processes to improve margins is low-hanging fruit. It isn’t on the level of startup innovation; it’s just a more innovative way to do things. We don’t consider it part of the innovation budget because it doesn’t create value in the market, only incremental growth and continuous improvement. The easiest goal in the innovation pie is to maintain relevance to your core market through enhancements — with new features for your current offerings or the experiences that deliver them. It’s easy because it focuses on a market you already know and on products you already know how to deliver. A company will seldom question allocating the largest portion of its innovation budget to these activities (40%–60%). 

A smaller portion (10%–20%) is allocated to reaching new customers with what you know how to deliver. This low-investment, fail-fast, test-the-waters approach is more akin to how a private equity investor might approach innovation, making many small bets and quickly abandoning those that fail to get traction. The key is fast experimentation through lean, agile approaches. That leaves the smallest portion (5%–10%) for focused bets on revolutionary, high-risk opportunities with new offerings to new customers. In this quadrant, you focus on a big idea, using agile approaches to break it apart to see which elements drive value through continuous assessments of desirability, since you don’t know for sure what the market values (even the idea itself). If you continue to clear hurdles, you stand a chance to launch a game-changer that fills an unmet need. You just have to test and experiment quickly. 

New models — new ways of delivering — can fall anywhere in the innovation portfolio, as do build, buy, or partner decisions. Knowing the type of growth that your initiatives represent and their place in the portfolio helps determine which to pursue and how, including acquiring a startup that may hold a key to the puzzle — intentionally identified by targeted criteria, which are de-risked by researching and identifying unmet needs in the market. Knowing how growth happens, and the best ways to focus your organization’s efforts to grow, is as critical as allocating investments across the innovation risk-reward spectrum for maximum returns. Doing so works better than placing random bets on the latest startup in the hopes of getting lucky. Or worse, betting on one silver bullet that misfires.



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