Strathmore Business School launched the Micro and Small Enterprises Post-training Impact Report: Training for Sustainable Businesses in Africa on 28th July 2016.
The partnership through a shared objective of promoting the development of micro, small and medium enterprises through provision of business management and financial literacy has been able to bridge the ever widening gap between business practice and knowledge skills set.
Through a partnership with the Kenya Coastal Development Project (K.C.D.P) through their implementing body, Coastal Development Authority (CDA), Strathmore Business School has been able to train over 500 micro and small enterprises business practitioners over the past three years since the inception of the MoU.
Through the adoption of training of trainers teaching model, the micro and small enterprise training has been able to further its spread across all counties in the Coastal region. The number of trained practitioners has significantly improved through the years, from the initial 453 trainees to over 1,300. This significant improvement has also had a sporadic effect on the businesses of the trained practitioners, milestones evident through the change of livelihoods within the Coastal Region of Kenya.
“The greatest problem we continue to observe with the micro and small enterprises is not a concept of illiteracy, but rather, a concept of accessing quality education which is practical and relevant to enhancing growth and productivity. Technical schools and institutions of higher learning must make a connection between the abilities of the mind and that of the hands,” remarked Dr. George Njenga, Dean, Strathmore Business School.
The launch was graced by notable industry players and speakers such as Dr. Bitange Ndemo, Associate Professor University of Nairobi and former Minister of Information and Communication, Dr. Jacquiline Uku, Project Manager, Kenya Coastal Development Program, Dr. Mohamed K. Hassan, Managing Director, Coast Development Authority and Ms, Maria Pauline Mogollon, Senior Private Sector Development Specialist, World Bank.
Dr. Bitange’s keynote address themed: The role of micro and small enterprises in the growth of the economy explored the role of research in informing training models and the role of institutions in reaching out to the most vulnerable groups. “Transforming people requires stepping out of the ivory towers and beginning to work with the people on the ground.” He also put emphasis on the need for micro and small enterprises to think about reaching a wider market by accelerating their businesses through visibility. “We must begin to shift the cultural make-up of our people regarding how they conduct businesses from the “peasant mentality”, thinking of into a “business mentality” where they provide products and services to a larger market.”
Speaking of the impact of the training, Dr. Jacqueline Uku talked of the significance of government bodies in indulging pace setters and captains of the industry in respective fields in order to achieve the best results. “Engaging institutions of higher learning whose repute are in training does not only affirm the need to forge strategic partnerships, but to also engage members of the academia in research and in bridging the knowledge – skills set gap.”