Eckerd program offered to Western Australian small-business owners to jumpstart recovery

Published September 14, 2020

Businesses in Western Australia are receiving a kickstart to their recovery from the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic courtesy of a partnership between a local business of theirs and Eckerd College’s Leadership Development Institute’s Entrepreneurial Mindset Profile® (EMP).

In August the Small Business Development Corporation of Western Australia launched the PIVOT program, which offered six months of training and workshops to struggling entrepreneurs to help them “develop a positive, resilient approach to the future” through rethinking their business strategies, according to the State’s website.

Government officials have partnered with Blow Your Own Mind (BYOM), a business-coaching and education company specializing in practical learning experiences and workshops. In 2019, BYOM contracted with Eckerd to be the exclusive licensees in Australia and New Zealand to deliver and certify others to deliver the EMP. Developed by the Leadership Development Institute at Eckerd College, the EMP is an empirically based, cutting-edge assessment tool based on extensive research into the traits, motivations and skills of entrepreneurs. Available online, the EMP helps leaders, students and entrepreneurs assess the degree to which they are utilizing an “entrepreneurial mindset” and provides resources to leverage their competitive edge.

PIVOT—which stands for Persist, Invent, Viewpoint, Opportunity and Timing—offered the EMP to small-business owners at the start of the six months of workshops to gauge their current mindset and at the end to demonstrate the shifts associated with what they have learned. Normally, these services would cost a participant $3,200, but the PIVOT program subsidizes the cost to benefit business owners and the overall economy.

Lisa Smith, EMP master practitioner and co-founder of Blow Your Own Mind, said this new program expands a previous partnership with the Small Business Development Corporation. “This program gives BYOM our greatest reach to date statewide (Western Australia), and this will be the largest study of entrepreneurial mindset in Australia so far,” she explained. “We are also pleased to be working with other EMP practitioners to deliver the coaching elements of this program, and this demonstrates our tagline of authentic business growth.”

Debra Conrad, EMP product director at Eckerd, said that she hopes this use of the EMP to address the concerns of businesses struggling to find their footing in a pandemic will be adopted by other small business development centers (SBDC) too. “It would be great to see American SBDCs use this approach as well to help citizens recover,” she said.