Survive & Thrive

Survive & thrive – Helping you build resilience and drive future growth

Wakefield Metropolitan District Council has embarked on an ambitious programme to help promote the district as a great place to live and work. In addition to plans which are well resourced and will be delivered by talented people, we are committed to a range of major capital projects and a raft of business support activities.

Post COVID these actions have never been more important. The pandemic present the whole business community with huge challenges and creating more resilient new businesses is at the top of the list.

The detail of the programme is below and if you’re thinking of signing up, you may also wish to read this very brief blog, Being Prepared.

How can Survive and Thrive help your business?

You will take part in a focused and bespoke programme of support with content and advice tailored to you and your business. The programme and course content will help you reset your business for the current climate and give you the skills, insight and confidence to ensure your business is fit for an ever changing future, whatever the challenge.

In addition to the expert mentoring and training from the team at BrownDog Agency and Wakefield, you will joining the programme alongside a cohort of peers which will give you the opportunity to build an invaluable network of likeminded people you can share your challenges and experiences with.

Planning & Modelling

Business planning for resilience – where are the broad, varied and robust sales going to come from? What is your strategy?

We will take a long, hard look inside our delegates’ businesses to see if the key indicators for resilience are there.

We will review the strategies within the business to increase sales, and explore whether the current product or service offer is suitable for the demanding road ahead.

Here are some handy guides and a helpful video that will help you, including a really helpful plan on a page!

AdVenture Top Tips Planning & Strategy

Plan on Page_Portrait

Video credited to Strategyzer

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

Finance – How will you fund your business?

According to recent research by the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), 17% of their members only have enough cash to support one month’s overheads, and only 36% could last 3 months.

Ensuring that your business will survive will inevitably come down to having sufficient funding. Your survival plan may call for hiring staff with different skills, investing in new technology, adding equipment and facilities, and creating reporting systems to measure and manage results, and all of these elements will need to be paid for, often before the additional sales revenue and profits start to kick in.

How will you find the money to allow you to survive, and then thrive?  From personal investment, external investors, crowdfunding, as well as potential partnerships, mergers or buy-ins/outs, there are numerous ways to raise the necessary funding, each of which come with pros and cons.

It’s also helpful to identify potential bank funds for working capital or growth plans, such as a loan or an overdraft– of course, they will need to see your plans and forecasts, which is where the previous session comes in handy.

Here are some handy top tips and information you might find helpful.

AdVenture Top Tips Finance_Single Sheet

AdVenture Top Tips Finance Booklet

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

Harnessing technology

Technology makes it easier and less expensive to scale a business, as well as helping to build a more resilient service proposition.  You can gain huge economies of scale and more output deliverable, with less reliance on your workforce, if you invest wisely in technology. 

Systems integration is a prime area for improvement in most businesses. Most companies today don’t simply use a single system; there could in fact be a dozen or more systems helping the business to run smoothly. If those systems don’t work together, they create silos, which in turn multiply communication and management problems as your company grows.

Planning for a resilient business model is the perfect time to evaluate the best products on the market that help save time and money, yet potentially accommodate higher volumes once your business starts to grow.

Here is a Top Tips sheet to help you make the most of your Tech!

Top 8 Tips Tech

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

New Product or Service Development

If one thing’s for certain, it’s that the world is very different now to what it was like only 4 months ago, which means that your current range of products and services are very likely in need of a refresh too.

Whether you are looking at adapting products to be more secure, anti-viral, easier to ship online or simply re-positioned to meet evolving customer needs, you need to be able to move from ideas generation, to prototyping, and into production as quickly and cost-effectively as possible.

Likewise with your service offer, from re-branding to marketing support, everything needs to meet a new set of customer criteria – virtual, remote, secure and easy to implement are the new watch words.

Some helpful documents to help you with your product or service development, including a Top Tips document and COSTAR template and guidance.

S&T New Product or Service Top Tips Pdf



Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

Recruiting the right talent

Do you have the right people in place to help keep your business on track once the going gets tough? If not, how will you find them? And, once you’ve attracted them, how do you keep them?

As part and parcel of strengthening and growing a business, you’re likely to need more, or differently skilled, staff. Technology can certainly help reduce dependence on people, but at the end of the day you still need highly qualified and effective teams in order to succeed.

Key roles might include sales, production, finance, customer service, and marketing – not to mention a management team to look after everyone. Sometimes the answer is to outsource or look to partners, rather than hire internally, and a key part of your decision making needs to factor in whether to recruit internally or not.

Here are some some tips in a presentation and PDF that will help you in recruiting, and keeping the right talent.

6 Tops Tips PDF

6 Top Tips Presentation

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

Maintaining the Correct Culture and Values

With so many challenges to face at the moment, it can be very hard keeping your work culture in place, but everyone must realise the importance of your business values, especially when things take a downturn.

Consistency and quality are paramount. Create the right culture and an environment where people want to be and want to excel – then get out of the way and let them get on with it.

All team members must be properly engaged, motivated, recognised and rewarded, and never more so than right now, when they could well be the most visible part of your business, often whilst working remotely.

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

Marketing your business post Covid-19

One of the hardest things to combat with any marketing campaign is inertia, and if your customers have got out of the habit of working with you then you need to work extra hard to bring them back on stream.

Add to that potentially reduced resources and a limited budget, and every business is going to have to fight hard for every pound.

This is where a well thought out, strategically led marketing campaign can help, as we help you to stand out from the crowd and put compelling messaging in front of the key decision makers.

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

Enterprise Development Mapping

How do you turn all of the previous sessions into one cohesive roadmap for success?

One of the key tools utilised by leading innovation companies to visualise the journey from where your business is now to becoming the resilient, successful business of the future, this summary session will give businesses the opportunity to map out all of the factors we have covered in the previous sessions, and see it in a highly visual and easily understood critical path, through an Enterprise Development Map.

Encompassing the business structure, tasks performed, people, internal and external environment, along with how the business needs to evolve in order to succeed, we will work on a sample plan that houses all of the key components to a successful, strong and resilient business in one visual, wall-based planning tool.

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?


Intro and Exploration: You will start with a 45 minute one to one diagnostic with expert delivery partners, BrownDog Agency.

One to One mentor: You will be assigned to a dedicated Wakefield AD:VENTURE expert business mentor, who will work with you through the programme and continue to support you as you implement your learning.

Webinars: Delivered by experts in industry & guaranteed to keep your attention – No Zoom fatigue here!

You’ll have access to 8 x 1 Interactive Webinars on the following topics.

  1. Planning & Modelling – Business planning for resilience 
  2. Finance – How will you fund your business?
  3. Harnessing technology – For sales / marketing / customer service / operations
  4. New Product / Service Development
  5. Recruiting the right talent
  6. Maintaining the Correct Culture and Values
  7. Marketing your business post Covid-19 
  8. Enterprise Development Mapping 

Ongoing review of your business throughout the programme to help you understand potential threats and opportunities, including: Sector analysis, though leadership, SEM Rush – review of website performance against SEO terms, Google Analytics – review of website performance in terms of quality of traffic, goals & tracking, competitor audit – presence, markets, sectors, SWOT

Access to a range of useful resource including: relevant blogs, helpful video clips, real world examples, templates, access to helpful connections and networks.

Peer to Peer learning – An often missed opportunity are the relationships and networks created through these focused business programmers. You will meet a variety of like minded individuals in a similar position as you, across a variety of industries and will all benefit from interaction with each other.

During and after programme completion, you will continue to work with your AD:VENTURE mentor to help you embed and implement your learning.

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

To register your interest simply hit the register button to the right.

No trick questions, just some info to check you are eligible and make sure we know what your business is all about before we speak.

It’s that simple!

Once you have registered, one of our organisers will be in contact to undertake a brief eligibility assessment.

When you register, you will be required to complete a short application form which will help us assess and target your specific needs followed by a business diagnostic, all of which is supported by the BrownDog Agency

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

In keeping with our theme, the delivery will be virtual!

There may be opportunity for some face to face interaction as we progress through the COVID 19 recovery journey, but we envisage at this stage that all delivery will be done via Zoom and telephone interaction.

It’s important we all learn how to make the most of online interaction to enable us to build this flexibility into our future lives – And if one thing certain about the future, it is that it will be different.

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?

The programme is aimed at Wakefield District based businesses under three years trading who are looking to adapt their business to survive, and to thrive, or individuals looking to set up a new business, who want to start strong and grow.

Please Note: ERDF Eligibility criteria do apply, and businesses in consumer retail (Only selling to the public), primary agriculture, and nuclear decommissioning and education provision will not be eligible.  If you aren’t sure, give us a call or email and we can clarify before you register.

Interested in becoming part of Survive & Thrive?



Survive & Thrive
Business Address (If applicable – If not, please provide personal address) All fields must be completed.

We can also help you with…













Ready to start your AD:VENTURE?

Register your interest and one of our advisors will be happy to help…







Terms & Conditions

Data Protection Act 1998: The above information you provide may be stored in both manual and electronic formats until 2033.  It will be held to facilitate the services we provide to you or your business and to assist with record keeping, statistical and research purposes, statutory purposes and to facilitate ongoing communication.  Information may be shared with our funders and organisations delivering services on their behalf where it is necessary in the interests of increasing your businesses enterprise prospects and to measure the impact and success of the project.  A full list of these funders and organisations is included below.

Marketing Permissions.  We would like to keep you informed of services and business support that we think may be of interest to you and your business. If in the future you’d prefer not to receive information from us please email and we will ensure you are removed from any future marketing correspondence.

Bradford Council
Business Enterprise Fund
Calderdale Council
Craven Council
Harrogate Borough Council
Kirklees Council
Leeds Beckett University
Leeds City Council
Leeds Trinity University
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government

Make It York
Mid-Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce
Prince’s Trust
Selby District Council
Wakefield Council
University of Bradford
University of Huddersfield
West and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce
West Yorkshire Combined Authority (as the accountable body for Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership)

As Data Controller, Please see below statement for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government

Privacy Notice for the Purpose of Data Collection for ERDF

The UK is updating its data protection legislation and it will come into force on 25 May 2018. The new laws aim to update current data protection legislation including the Data Protection Act 1998, increase the privacy protection of all UK and EU citizens and reduce the risk of data breaches. It will apply to all public and private organisations processing personal data.

The EU Common Provisions Regulations (CPR), and Article 6 of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) Regulation require the Ministry for Housing Communities and Local Government (MHCLG), as the managing authority for the programme, to monitor and evaluate ERDF-funded activities. In order to conduct monitoring and evaluation (including the summative assessment) and to ensure compliance, the collection of personal data is required.

Who is the data controller for ERDF personal data?

The MHCLG ERDF Managing Authority is the controller for all personal data required to help deliver the ERDF programme under the terms of its ERDF Funding Agreement.

The MHCLG ERDF Managing Authority will be processing personal data in the ERDF programme according to the following lawful basis:

Article 6(1)(e) of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

‘processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller’.

The lawful basis for controlling or processing `special category’ data under ERDF is:

Article 9(2)(g) GDPR

“processing is necessary for reasons of substantial public interest, on the basis of Union or Member State law which shall be proportionate to the aim pursued, respect the essence of the right to data protection and provide suitable and specific measures to safeguard the fundamental rights and the interests of the data subject;”

What personal data will be collected?

Depending on the nature of activities of the ERDF-funded project and the indicators listed under each activity, the following information for each direct or indirect beneficiary where these are individuals may be collected:

• Name of contact point within a business (in some cases property owner) engaged with or individual engaged with;

• Address

• Postcode

• Phone number

• Ethnicity

• Disability

• Email address

• Labour market status prior to receiving support and 6 months after receiving support

• Duration of support

• Intensity of support

• Pay details

MHCLG may collect special category data on ethnicity and disability.

Who will my personal data be shared with and how will it be used?

Your details will be stored securely and retained in compliance with GDPR and the new Data Protection Act. This information will be used to evaluate this project and to report to the European Regional Development Fund for monitoring and evaluation purposes.

Your details will be used to support the ERDF programme research and evaluation activities. MHCLG will need to share all or some of your personal data with the national evaluator of the ERDF programme. In some cases, the national evaluator, i.e. independent external contractors commissioned by DCLG, may use the contact details to contact a sample of direct or indirect beneficiaries for the purpose of the National Evaluation of the programme. It is likely that the survey methodology will need to incorporate a variety of approaches in order to maximise the survey response rate (for example, telephone survey, written survey, and e-mail survey) – hence the need for a variety of contact details required for each participant. MHCLG may also need to share with other government departments and the European Commission where this is necessary to test the robustness of the data gathered or to inform the National Evaluation.

MHCLG will not give any personal data to any other organisation unless needed for the purpose of the evaluation and will instruct them not to use it to contact individuals for any reasons not connected with the purpose of the National Evaluation of the ERDF programme 2014-2020 or other matters directly relating to the evaluation. If MHCLG has to pass on the data, it will only provide what is needed, and if possible will remove the details that might identify individuals personally. MCHLG will not transfer personal data outside the European Union, to third countries or international organisations.

MHCLG will not keep your personal data for longer than it needs but as a minimum, will retain data for two years after the closure of the 2014-2020 ERDF programme in line with the European Regional Development Fund document retention guidance to ensure MHCLG meets reporting obligations and to demonstrate compliance with EU


Individual’s rights

ERDF participants cannot claim the following rights in terms of ERDF personal data:

• right to erasure (“right to be forgotten”)

• right to portability of their data

The data collected is your personal data, and you have the right, subject to lawful data requirements:

• to see what data we have about you;

• to ask us to stop using your data;

• to ask us to delete your data, or to correct your data if there is no longer a justification to process it;

• to lodge a complaint with the independent Information Commissioner (ICO) if you think we are not handling your data fairly or in accordance with the law. 

Automated decision making

Your personal data will not be subjected to automated decision making

Contact Details

You can contact the ICO at Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF.

Tel: 0303 123 1113


If you would like further information about the programme and your personal information please contact the ERDF Programme at: