The Institute for Independent Business, or IIB as it is most often referred to, is an association designed to assist business owners and managing directors from the independent sector, providing a range of support and services tailored to meet the specific needs of independent businesses and their clients. 

In 2014, Sir Peter Birkett became an Accredited Business Consultant of the IIB, based on his experience in the field of education. Some statistics for small independent businesses in the UK can be seen in the infographic attachment.  

The IIB was initially established in 1984 and created the trademarked Consultancy Business Development Programme in 1991. The IIB Business Support Programme™ was later introduced to help connect accredited IIB Associates. 

IIB Business Support Programme™ 

The development of the IIB Business Support Programme™ focused specifically on meeting the needs of owners of independent businesses. The programme can be customised to meet each individual business’s personal objectives and requirements, tailoring the level and type of support offered within the boundaries of a proven model.  

Owners or managing directors can request a meeting with an accredited IIB Associate to determine eligibility for the programme. During this meeting, the specific challenges and opportunities facing the business and industry are discussed at length, with no charge for the initial meeting. All aspects of the business can be reviewed thoroughly with no fee and no obligation.  

The accredited Associates are trained to identify areas for improvement and offer new ideas, which can result in business owners being pointed in the direction of immediate help. Associates are also in a position to call on a wide community of specialists to delve into more challenging areas and provide tailored support for resolving certain issues. 

Details about the work of the Consultancy Business Development Programme™ can be seen in the embedded short video. 

IIB History 

Initially named the Institute for Independent British Business, the IIB was formed to provide practical advice that works to small and medium-sized business owners and managers around the worldSince 1984, the independent business sector has been able to access hands-on assistance and useful information from the IIB. Much of this information was originally shared through the publication of Small Business Today, distributed monthly.  

In 1985, the IIB supplemented this with the creation of a hotline system, the Hot Line Advisor Scheme, which allowed small business owners to call for free advice on virtually any relevant topic. Experts from within the IIB network manned the hotline and were on hand to provide professional advice based on years of experience.  

The IIB also facilitates ongoing training and development programmes using multiple formats, including conferences, forums, webinars, and workshops. 

Residential Business School 

The IIB operates a Residential Business School at regular intervals from its head office in Amsterdam. These schools create unique opportunities for business owners to access a variety of expert training courses designed by professionals to help guide their business forward.  

Business owners can learn new techniques for lead generation, receive insights into how to broaden their professional networks, and gain a thorough understanding of how best to position the business for ongoing growth and success. Courses are balanced between lectures and practical, hands-on training, with a series of knowledgeable and enthusiastic speakers from all business sectors.  

The Residential Business School from the IIB facilitates learning for small business owners in ways that compete with training initiatives in larger corporations, redressing the balance and generating opportunities.  

You can learn more about what is means to be an independent business in the PDF attachment to this post.