Essentials of Business Development

Build relationships, create opportunities and lead productive partnerships

Event description

Universities and research organisations increasingly expect their staff to diversify income streams, build pathways to impact, offer courses to partners and support knowledge exchange.  These staff are busy and often don’t have the skills needed to build relationships and engage effectively with business or other external partners. For people whose job is to support these researchers or academics, this can be a challenging task.  It is easy to make contacts but much harder to turn these into valuable, long-term, productive relationships that provide benefits to both sides.  This course aims to make this process more straightforward and efficient and give the delegates tools to help them add value to the academic or researcher with whom they are working.

Training outcomes

  • Understand different ways in which Universities and research organisations interact with partners, what they really think of these services and how we can improve them

  • Develop an offer in a complex and crowded market using tools such as marketing databases, CRMs, marketing and social media to achieve your goals

  • Know how to approach networking with confidence

  • Understand how to build your personal brand and a wide and varied network of contacts

  • Discuss how to manage your projects so that they succeed

2023 Dates

Tuesday 14 November - Friday 17 November 2023 (cannot be attended remotely)

Venue: Woodland Grange, Warwickshire 

  • Registration Evening - Tuesday 14 November 2023 
  • Day 1 - Wednesday 15 November 2023
  • Day 2 - Thursday 16 November 2023 
  • Day 3 - Friday 17 November 2023

Costs do not include accommodation and travel. PraxisAuril cannot make bookings on behalf of delegates. Once you have made your booking, you will receive your accommodation reference in your confirmation email. 

Please click the 'Book Now' button to register your space.

Event fee: Non-Members £1,835 Member £1,375

Who should attend?

  • Relevant job titles: Business Development, Partnership Manager, KE/ KT Manager, Impact Manager
  • Relevant sectors/organisations: Higher Education (HE), public sector research organisations, businesses
  • Experience needed: Business Development professionals new to KE (0-1 year in KE), or Business Development professionals new to the role entirely, or KE/TT professionals with no specific understanding around Business Development
  • Supporting courses: Fundamentals of Technology Transfer, Foundations of Knowledge Exchange
  • This course will contain; group work, network evenings, and interactive activities. 


If you are interested in the course please email to request to be put on the mailing list for new dates.

Course Directors

Sarah Stables

For the past 15 years Sarah has worked to promote knowledge exchange between HE and industry, her work has been focused on Cumbria and as such her specialist area of understanding is the growth and development of new Universities as place based anchor institutions in rural areas.  All of her industry and knowledge exchange work has involved engagement with businesses across a range of sectors, with a specific understanding of the challenges  of enabling knowledge exchange in rural areas with a primarily SME business profile.  European Funding has enabled much the Knowledge Exchange work, as such Sarah has experience of managing and delivering programmes of over £24M of European structural funds.

Over the past 15 years Sarah has worked with and managed teams of up to 26 Knowledge Exchange professionals and as such has a keen interest in the advancement of knowledge exchange professional development frameworks.

Sarah’s most  recent role has been as Business Development and Enterprise Lead for the University of Cumbria.  She has sat on many  regional boards encouraging links between Universities and regional growth this includes:  Cumbria LEP Technical Officers Group, the Cumbria ESIF committee and the North West Universities  European Unit.  Sarah was very proud to be an AURIL council member from 2015.



Gurmit Kler

Gurmit Kler joined the University of Birmingham in September 2013 to head up a new Business Engagement function. Her role focuses on taking the brilliance of the University’s academic endeavour and ensuring it reaches out into industry in a commercially viable research collaboration. This has led to successful engagements with organisations such as Procter & Gamble, GSK, Pfizer, PWC, HSBC. Prior to this she has held senior management positions within the Energy, Travel and IT sectors focusing on corporate development and transformation programmes. 

Her career has centred around engaging and developing relationships to maximise the business opportunity. A great rapport builder who believes in managing through motivating and fostering a strong service focused culture. 

In her spare time she is a keen runner, yoga enthusiast and mummy of two.