Initial findings from case studies
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Initial findings from Case Studies. Key turning points: Securing the SureStart contract created a major step change A companywide review enabled some difficult changes to be made

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Key turning points:

Securing the SureStart contract created a major step change

A companywide review enabled some difficult changes to be made

The development of the Can Cook Studio has started to bring in significant revenue and helped to create a high profile for the organisation

Critical Success Factors:

Creating a high profile and not skimping on publications and marketing tools

Having survived long enough for people to take an interest

Running the organisation as a business

Not being afraid to challenge or be challenged

Really knowing and understanding the community and retaining a passion to meet their needs

Interviewees: Susan Roberts and Robbie Davidson

Location: Speke, Greater Merseyside

Age of organisation: 20 years, although 5 Children and Families Development Trust incorporated in 2006

Legal Structure: Company Limited by Guarantee with Charitable status, second will be a Company Limited by Guarantee

Annual Turnover: £1.2 million

Staff: 43

Board Members: 6 board members


Interviewees: Sue Dixon, DirectorLocation: Stockport, Greater ManchesterAge of organisation: 3 yearsLegal Structure: Community Interest Company Limited by Shares – Maximum £1 share profit per yearAnnual Turnover: £350, 000Staff: 6Board Members: 3

  • Key Turning Points:

  • Moving from a private consultancy to an independent CIC

  • Funding from the Tudor Trust in 2009 enabled the organisation to grow the team to develop new business and develop multiple income streams

  • A significant contract with the Strategic Health Authority will develop initiatives with 10 Health and Social Care Organisations across the North West, broadening scope and partners

  • Creating an Operations Manager post has improved processes and strengthened core

  • Critical Success Factors:

  • In depth knowledge of the sector and community

  • Strategic partnerships

  • Having a strong entrepreneurial team with broad networks

  • Keeping small and efficient, to be able to adapt quickly and be reactive to need

  • Having service user involvement from board to staff to volunteer level


Interviewee: Karen Butigen, Chief ExecutiveLocation: Ashton Under Lyne, Greater ManchesterAge of organisation: 12 yearsLegal Structure: 2 company structures - St Peter’s Community Partnership (Company Limited by Guarantee with Charitable status) St Peter’s Trading Partnership (Company Limited by Guarantee, acting as a trading arm)Annual Turnover: £2 million across the two organisationsStaff: 70 staff and community volunteersBoard Members: 12 places, currently 10 board members

Key turning points:

An organisational review led to a change in business and operational model

Wind down projects services which were running at losses despite being successful on the surface

A change of staffing and leadership and the set up a pool of employees that can be drawn in to work across a range of services, rather than set Project Managers

Winning a series of awards raised their profile locally, regionally, nationally

Critical Success Factors:

Having strong leadership across staff and Board

Being local across staff and Board

Moving away from grants as core source of income

Becoming more independent from local authority


Interviewee: Karen Martyniuk, Chair and General ManagerLocation: Clayton Brook, PrestonAge of organisation: 13 yearsLegal Structure: Company Limited by Guarantee with Charitable StatusAnnual Turnover: £10,000.00Staff: 0 paid 20 volunteersBoard Members: 14

Key turning points:

Securing key in kind support for premises

European Social Funding enabled a range of community training which led to a range of positive impacts. However provision has now been significantly reduced due to lack of funds.

Introduction of counselling services has enabled them to bring income in through grants to deliver regular services, paid for by the local Health Authority

A shift in focus is making the organisation more enterprising, looking at setting up social enterprise services such as the printing enterprise they are developing

Critical Success Factors:

Effective team work

Having consistent leadership centred on a passion for people, with active local people driving the organisation forward

Having strong relationships for long term assistance and in kind support

The commitment and co-ordination from the General Manager


Interviewees: Angela Green, General Manager and Sally Orrel, Executive DirectorLocation: Nenthead, near Alston, CumbriaAge of organisation: 5 yearsLegal Structure: Industrial and Provident Society Annual Turnover: £150,000Staff: 4 .5Board Members: 12

  • Key turning points:

  • Adding the Post Office to the shop created a real hub and bought a sense of community back to the village

  • Realising that they are limited by their facilities not the population has prompted them to create new opportunities for growth including a new venue, delivery services and on-line sales

  • Critical Success Factors:

  • Setting financial targets

  • Business advice from various sources

  • Ensuring transparency and accountability

  • Having clear goals

  • Retaining local support and being community led


Common themes
Common Themes

‘We are spread too thinly, with too much work, with too little financial resource over too short a time scale’

Local Authorities are risk averse and lack entrepreneurial understanding or experience

Success factors include re-focussing on the mission, making time to have a hard look and review the business model, reshuffling the board to make sure the most suitable and active people are driving the organisation forward

Enterprise is playing an increasing role in generating income, increasing independence and creating employment

A range of generic support is on offer for new and emerging organisations. The more specific support and knowledge established organisations need is not widely available.


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