The new Growth Vouchers scheme could help small businesses to avoid one of the most common causes of failure, according to the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). Launched by the Government yesterday (27th Jan), Growth Vouchers will give small businesses subsidies of up to £2,000 to invest in expert advice on key business areas including management and leadership – an area which has been identified as the leading cause of failure among start-ups.

Director of Strategy, Petra Wilton, said: “Unfortunately, poor management has been identified as the most common cause of business insolvency. Many start-ups have brilliant ideas with huge potential, but fall down when it comes to making it a reality. That’s because they lack the skills and experience to manage their growth effectively. The new Growth Vouchers scheme offers small businesses a great opportunity to get expert advice on this crucial area.”

Members of CMI and of the Institute of Consulting have been invited to register as potential suppliers to small businesses who secure the Vouchers. Their eligibility as suppliers is based on their professional body membership, a key part of which is that they adhere to codes of professional practice.

Petra Wilton continues: “A commitment to ethical standards is at the heart of professional body membership. Small businesses looking to find the right supplier will benefit from working with consultants and advisers who have shown their commitment to high standards.”

The programme will focus on five different themes of advice which small businesses have said they need help with. These are:

  • Improving leadership and management;
  • Making the most of digital technology;
  • Managing cashflow, late payments and negotiating finance;
  • Marketing, attracting and keeping customers;
  • Developing skills and taking on staff.

Judy Craske, a member of both CMI and IC, who is qualified as both a Chartered Manager and a Certified Management Consultant, said: “Getting access to expert consultancy and advice can make a huge difference to small businesses that are looking to reach the next level in their growth. Whether it’s improving management and leadership, helping embed smarter technology or improving finance processes, the Growth Vouchers scheme is focused on some of the biggest challenges facing small companies. This scheme could have a big impact on thousands of small businesses.”

More information about CMI and IC’s involvement in the Growth Vouchers scheme can be found at

Potential suppliers can sign up to the Marketplace via