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Jon Kennard


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How one company is inspiring the next generation of business talent


Dan Martin, editor of our sister site BusinessZone reports on how one company has set up a scheme to train the next generation of business leaders.

I spent last Thursday touring Edinburgh promoting entries from Scottish entrepreneurs for our small business competition The Pitch 2012.

During the day, I visited several organisations to discover how they are supporting small business owners. The first meeting was at the offices of recruitment company Bright Purple, a company recently named in the top 10 small companies in Scotland.

Under the leadership of its founder Nick Price, the company has achieved huge growth over recent years. In 2010/11 it double its turnover to £37m and as well as Edinburgh, now has offices in Singapore and Lithuania.

This is all the more impressive given that Price left school aged 14 and got his first job sweeping floors.

The main reason I visited the company was to check out the Bright Purple Academy, a training scheme which not only boosts the skills of staff already working for the business but also the next generation of business talent.

The company's efforts are hugely inspiring. They have invested lots of time and money into taking on young apprentices, mentoring them and will eventually give some of them jobs. All participants will leave with valuable experience.

Among the activities the apprentices have taken part in are meeting Nobel Prize winner Mohammed Yunus and addressing politicians from the Scottish Parliament. One of the apprentices has even secured proper business deals!

For some people the recruitment sector doesn't have the best of reputations but Bright Purple's recognition as a top place to work and their efforts to inspire future leaders show how by creating a positive workplace you can achieve huge success.

I caught up with Marielle Tweedie, who runs Bright Purple's apprenticeship programme, to find out more. The interview is well worth watching.


If you're an entrepreneur who is looking to take your business forward, enter The Pitch 2012 by 31 May and you could win business support worth £50,000. 

Author Profile Picture
Jon Kennard

Freelance writer

Read more from Jon Kennard

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