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Setting up a social enterprise

£8.99 or free to NCVO members – Sign in or find out about membership

2.8/5 from 878 ratings

Whether you want your charity to start trading or you're about to set up a business with a social impact, make a successful start with this online course. Learn how to clarify your social purpose and the types of products or services you’re looking to sell and find out how to make a long term difference by ensuring the sustainability of your business model.
Format: Four online training videos and downloadable resources.

Watch two minutes of all four videos for FREE!

Find out about your trainer, Jean Barclay.

Course structure:

  • definition and types of social enterprise
  • key elements to consider before your start: purpose, products, business model
  • social purpose and social impact
  • linking your products and services to your social purpose
  • developing a sustainable business model

Learning outcomes

By the end of the course you'll be able to:

  • understand what type of social enterprise you want to set up
  • clarify your social purpose and impact
  • decide on your products and services and link them to your social purpose
  • clarify your business model and take steps to ensure its sustainability.

Setting up a social enterprise (part one) - Watch two minutes for FREE!

Setting up a social enterprise (part two) - Watch two minutes for FREE!

Setting up a social enterprise (part three) - Watch two minutes for FREE!

Setting up a social enterprise (part four) - Watch two minutes for FREE!

Further resources

Upon purchase of this course you can download:

  • completed task examples for parts 1 to 4
  • a business plan template for your social enterprise
  • useful links to further resources.

About the trainer

Jean Barclay is a planning and evaluation consultant with 25 years of experience working in the UK not for profit sector. She has carried out a wide range of support projects for charities and social enterprises as well as research for policymakers and support organisations. As a non executive director of an NHS commissioning organisation she has a strong understanding of issues facing social enterprises seeking public sector contracts. Her recent work includes: supporting a local mental health social enterprise with business planning; developing of a business model for a new collaborative venture led by a group of national charities and social enterprises; and assessing feasibility of new ventures for one of the UK's largest charities.

She also wrote 'Social enterprise - is it a good idea' - a guide for how social enterprise can complement charitable work. It is available in our store.

Buy now!

Click on the 'Add to basket' button at the top of the page to buy this course on setting up a social enterprise or get all our training from £9.99/month with our StudyPass subscription.

Need more help?

If you would like to develop your skills in setting up a social enterprise beyond this course please discuss further training opportunities with Jean at

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Page last edited Mar 31, 2017

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Face-to-face training

We also run a range of classroom based courses on a variety of topics throughout the year.

See our events listing for dates.