Running your own business gives you the chance to fill your days with the kind of work that inspires you. When you call the shots, you have more control over how and where you spend your time and energy, which can make for a better work-life blend and higher levels of career satisfaction. But going it alone also requires hard work, grit and the resilience to cope when things don’t quite go to plan. Building a successful business from the ground up is no mean feat.
Build the foundations of a successful business with professional advice and expert support.
All of our services are free and strictly confidential. They’re available to all past and present ICAEW members, ACA students, past and present ICAEW staff and their close family.
Click here for more information on who is eligible for our support.
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Tap into your personal strengths and understand what energises you, so you can make the right choices for your career. Complete a 30-minute in-depth strengths assessment and receive a one-to-one follow up consultation with a qualified practitioner.
Strengths profiling assessments are offered on a first come, first served basis with limited places available.Submit an online enquiry form
Work one to one with an experienced business coach to clarify your business idea and evaluate its potential, develop a comprehensive and realistic business plan and cultivate the skills you need to develop, launch and maintain a successful business. You may also be eligible to apply for a start-up grant of up to £2,000 to help towards costs such as training, equipment and licenses.
Business coaching is available in the UK only. Start-up grants can be accessed internationally.Submit an online enquiry form
Be empowered to set, achieve and even exceed your personal and professional goals. Your coach will support you to define what it is you're seeking to achieve, identify potential barriers, clarify your priorities, make the most of your key strengths and skills and identify areas for development as you pursue new opportunities and face new challenges.
You can request up to 5 personal and professional coaching sessions over the telephone or via Skype.Submit an online enquiry form
Use these self-help tools to start your own business.
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Our free personal and professional development courses are available to past and present ICAEW members, ACA students, ICAEW staff and their close families, at a number of locations across the UK. Many of our courses are also available online; perfect for those with busy schedules, who are unable to travel, don't live close to the venues, or for those who live outside of the UK.
Develop your capacity to cope more effectively with setbacks and improve your self-confidence.LEARN ONLINE FIND A UK COURSE NEAR YOU
Develop your emotional intelligence for increased self-awareness and improved relationships.LEARN ONLINE FIND A UK COURSE NEAR YOU
Boost your impact and become more confident, effective and persuasive.LEARN ONLINE
Learn how to generate new opportunities for success with the right mindset.LEARN ONLINE
CABA's career development support has helped hundreds of people find new roles, progress their career, start their own business, improve their work-life blend and more.
‘Recruiters said that my age and the career break would work against me. CABA put me in touch with 2 different coaches. They helped me re-frame my job search, define what I can offer and improve my self-confidence. I ended up with 2 job offers on the table.’
‘They gave me resilience training, provided me with a sympathetic ear via their helpline and they gave me career coaching and support to get me through this difficult period. I would tell any student who’s feeling under pressure, don’t focus on keeping up a front. Instead, reach out to CABA.’
‘It wasn’t just about the financial help – it was that I had someone who believed in me and could support me in a number of different ways. It boosted my confidence and took away a lot of the stress and worry about starting up a business on my own.’
‘My husband was suddenly made redundant. I knew that CABA also supports spouses, so I encouraged him to take up some career coaching as well. We both felt so inspired and confident that we came together to devise a new business plan and we’re now in the process of evolving my practice into a consultancy we will run together.’
‘I got in touch to find out if they could help me with some employment advice and career guidance. When I first spoke to CABA, I could tell straight away that I was speaking to someone skilled and experienced. I felt understood very quickly and I was so relieved that I’d put my hand up to ask for help.’
‘I wasn’t sure about how I was presenting myself on paper and if there was more I could do to stand out. I approached CABA and asked if I could have some support revising my CV. I was given some career coaching and it was a fantastic experience. It’s not just the advice the career coach gave me. It was taking time and space to think about my position that was really valuable.’
‘I followed up courses with some career coaching which helped rebuild my CV and changed how I present myself and my skills. I’ve always enjoyed work, but I do feel my bipolar disorder has interrupted my career regularly and pulling it back on track is a lot of work, so having a coach helped with this.’
‘The CABA course challenged me to think deeply about my strengths and the things I enjoy. I met up with the course leader for some free one-to-one coaching sessions. This really helped me in interviews, because I was able to be really clear about what motivates me and what I can bring to a team. Within 6 weeks, I was in a new role as Finance Director in the charity sector.’
‘The Authentic Happiness course, in particular, was great for confirming the choices I was making. I also had 3 sessions of coaching with a career advisor. We spent time reviewing my strengths and determining how to build on my successes, which was motivating and gave me a real confidence boost. ’
‘I was having difficulties with a colleague. I was finding her behaviour very challenging. While I was on the resilience course, I found out that CABA offered coaching. It was a real eye-opener. My coach helped me see that this colleague’s behaviour was being facilitated in part by the management, which meant that it was a management issue, not a personal one. This allowed me to approach the problem in a much more pragmatic way.’
‘CABA gave me 3 sessions with a career coach to help improve my CV. They also offered me a LinkedIn course. The sessions were useful on a practical level and on a personal level. I had a connection with a friendly face who understood my industry and wanted to support me. I needed validation for the direction I was going in. Working with CABA really rebuilt my confidence. Just over 3 months after leaving my previous job, I had 2 good job offers.’
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