InCube Creative Programme
A resource that empowers Renfrewshire’s entrepreneurs to harness their full potential, InCube’s Cindy Robb regaled us with the fantastic services on offer down at their High Street base.
“It’s a one-stop-shop for anyone looking to start up a business. We provide a whole range of services; Business Gateway, digital boost workshops and we’ve got a Princes’ Trust workshop for people aged 18-30. However, the part I’m really engaged with is the InCube Creative Programme. It provides support for any product-based designers or makers. We work with milliners, ceramicists textile designers, jewellers and anyone who has something that they hope to sell.”
WHAT TO EXPECT
“The programme is through competitive entry and the next course is due to start in September. They come to us twice a week for about six months for masterclasses, workshops and one-to-one support. There’s a lot of peer support too as a lot of them have been working from their bedrooms or a shed if they’re lucky. By coming down, a lot of creatives say that one of the main benefits is connecting with a network and bouncing ideas off one another. This programme also provides a year’s membership to Renfrewshire Chamber of Commerce and access to a whole raft of legal & HR support and networking meetings.
“We cover the whole range of skills that you need to start up a business, as there’s a lot of talented people out there but no-one is born knowing how to grow a brand or make it sustainable. On the marketing side of things, we help people to develop their story and teach them what it takes to engage with customers. Speaking of which, one of the new things we’ve done this year is ‘website in a day’ in which they can leave with a fully functioning platform and e-commerce facility for their wares. Another program that ran this year was the “Creative Toolkit” with business coach Marion Morrison, which aimed to develop personal and business resilience. It’s all about instilling skills that can help to improve their confidence.”
TAKING THE NEXT STEP
“A lot of our creators had regular full-time jobs and did this as a hobby, then they reached a point in life where they realised ‘this is what I want to do.’ One of the very early groups featured Laura Provan of Paisley Pins, a brand which now is stocked at over 40 National Trust properties across Scotland. We’re looking for people who have a good product, the mindset to grow their business and are ready to make the transition to a full-blown business. The masterclasses are also open to anyone who thinks it’d beneficial to their profession.”
“This shop is based down at 9B Gilmour Street and all of our designers and makers have the opportunity to trade there without paying commission. For an early stage business, having a location to generate cashflow from is fantastic. In addition, the shop functions as a retail skills academy, which means that they take on people who are unemployed and give them an SVQ Level 2 qualification in customer service. These trainees act as ambassadors for the products and having them available to the public gives our designers a chance to attain pivotal feedback that aids their development. Being in the middle of Paisley, it also gives the local residents a chance to support homegrown independent designers and makers.”
For more Information, please visit the website or phone 0300 300 1180.