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I know that I can just give them a call, they get straight on the case, take it to the panel, and come up with solutions FOR ME. — Susan Wylie, ‘Touch’ Showband

Nine steps to starting a BizFizz project

If you think BizFizz could help your community then here’s what you need to do:

1. Contact BizFizz 0207 820 6300. We will come out and talk to you and other potential stakeholders about whether BizFizz could work for you. If you decide to go ahead, you may wish to form a working partnership to take BizFizz forward in your area.

2. Mobilise the community to support the idea of having a BizFizz project locally. This may take some letter-writing, one or two big invitation meetings and some one-to-one meetings with key people. The National Team is available to make presentations at these meetings. This will raise awareness of the project, get community support (including letters of support) and prepare people who might want to join the Local Panel later.

3. Develop a fundraising action plan and make funding applications. We can provide background information to support this.

4. Once the funding is in place (or looks promising) a more formal partnership agreement can be drawn up between local organisation(s) and nef (new economics foundation). This will detail (among other things) the budget, who employs the Coach and where they are located.

5. Start recruiting a Local Panel. Identify 8-10 people who are prepared to be part of your local panel.

6. Recruit the Coach. The National Team will provide a recruitment pack with job description, person specification, sample advertisement, and other support materials. A selection panel should be established consisting of a couple of people from local organisations and one from the National Team.

7. The project starts when the Coach starts work. We will schedule a one week training residential for the Coach (preferably alongside Coaches from other projects). They will spend their first days getting to know people in the community and letting everyone know that they are available to support people setting up and running businesses.

8. Before any real ‘cases’ start to come through, induction meetings are held with the Local Panel members to get them used to working together and to understand the type of support required of them.

9. Each Local Panel member introduces the Coach to at least ten further community members. The Coach will identify potential additional panel members and suggest them to the Local Management Group.