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Professional learning and development

The Leadership For Growth Programme supports ambitious SMEs across the Liverpool City Region to drive productivity and growth by improving their leadership and management capabilities.



taking part to date



taking part to date

The Leadership for Growth programme is designed to engage and develop the capabilities of existing and aspiring managers and leaders within scale-up potential SMEs, enabling them to improve business performance, productivity, and resilience.

This project is funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund with the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority as the lead authority.

Our fully-funded Chartered Management Institute (CMI) courses helps participants to address either operational or strategic leadership capabilities. The courses are designed to create ‘action-centred’ leaders, with dynamic capabilities to repeatedly lead change, growth and development in organisations and employees. The strategic leadership content focuses on the challenges and skills of making decisions that must be made in support of the organisational objectives, purpose and vision. It will also focus on how adapting strategic management styles can ensure performance, motivation, engagement and consistency within the SME environment. The operational management content focusses on effective and efficient managerial styles and behaviours and how these styles may be adapted in line with organisational expectations of performance, motivation, engagement and consistency.

Ineffective management practices account for around 55% of the total factor productivity gap in SMEs (The Productivity Institute, 2022) and around 60% of SMEs don’t formally monitor their own productivity (Institute of Directors, 2018). The Leadership for Growth Programme aims to support SMEs to improve their capabilities and drive business performance improvements.

All our courses are offered:

  1. Online, through a flexible delivery model
  2. Fully funded, to eligible SMEs
  3. Via Edge Hill’s award winning Business School
  4. Using our highly accessible and intuitive learning platform
  5. With formal professional body accreditation and membership on completion


Step 1: Arrange a Business Diagnostic meeting with our team to confirm your business’ eligibility and objectives

Step 2: Complete the online Admissions form, selecting your preferred course and start date

Step 3: Await your enrolment invite and joining instructions. Then you’re all set to start!

Courses Available

There are two courses to choose from, taught at different academic levels, providing suitability for those in both management and senior leadership roles. Both courses lead to a CMI Certificate, professional body accreditation and membership:

CMI Management and Leadership Certificate (Level 4)
CMI Strategic Management and Leadership Certificate (Level 7)

Entry dates

The current available entry dates for each course are below. New dates will be added throughout 2024 as they become available.

Please note: The day of the week the course starts (shown in brackets) will be the same consistent day throughout when the online tutor-led sessions occur each week.

Management and Leadership
(Level 4)
Strategic Management  and Leadership
(Level 7)
16/07/2024 (Tuesday)06/09/2024 (Tuesday)

Case studies


Courses are available fully funded to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Liverpool City Region.

What is an SME?

  • An SME is a business with fewer than 250 employees and an annual turnover (income) of less than £42 million.
  • Employees of charities and public sector organisations are unfortunately not eligible.
  • Funded places are limited to one per individual participant. Employers may send three employees and we encourage both aspiring and current managers and leaders to participate.

Please note: The CMI Level 4 Management and Leadership Certificate does not require any prior learning or academic qualification prerequisites. Those looking to undertake the CMI Level 7 Strategic Management and Leadership Certificate must either hold a bachelor’s degree (or equivalent qualification) or hold significant leadership and management experience.

Chartered Management Institute

Gaining a CMI qualification can be the key to improving your own knowledge, skills and performance. For individuals, gaining a professional CMI qualification can:

  • boost your career prospects and earning potential
  • help you face challenges with confidence
  • enhance your professional reputation

Increasing you or your team’s ability to manage people, deliver complex projects and drive change effectively can improve the quality and efficiency of your business.

The programmes are delivered by Edge Hill University’s Business School. The Business School offers exceptional teaching and a highly supportive learning environment. The academic staff are drawn from a variety of backgrounds and bring with them a wealth of business and professional expertise.

The CMI is the only chartered professional body in the field of management and leadership offering high-quality management qualifications recognised throughout UK and Europe.

More than 80% of managers said that a CMI qualification is a key part of becoming a professional manager.


Get in touch

If you are an SME based in Liverpool City Region and would like to express your interest in our CMI programmes, please complete our enquiry form today. Places on the courses are limited.

Complete the form below and one of the team will be in touch to help you.