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Towards a healthy high street: developing mentoring schemes for smaller retailers

Hudson-Davies, Richard and Parker, Cathy and Byrom, John (2002) Towards a healthy high street: developing mentoring schemes for smaller retailers. Industrial and commercial training, 34 (7). pp. 248-255. ISSN 0019-7858

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Abstract

The small- to medium-sized enterprise (SME) retailing sector in the UK is facing challenging times. In order to help the sector meet these challenges a number of initiatives have been set up primarily with the intention to train, develop and support SME retailers through these times of change. Nevertheless, although a number of schemes exist at the European, national, regional and local levels, their ability to engage with the sector and facilitate change is questionable. Many of the training schemes and advice services are just not perceived by SME retailers to be relevant to their needs. In this paper, we suggest that a practical alternative to many of the structured and formal approaches currently on offer is that of mentoring. By reviewing the literature pertaining to the method and by presenting SME applications of mentoring we develop a framework for mentoring in the SME retail sector.

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