The Future’s So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades

Want to start your own business but feel like you need to gain some experience and contacts before taking the big leap? Perhaps you should consider a graduate role in Business Development to get your career off the ground and give you the head-start you need to give you the confidence and experience to excel as an entrepreneur. Here’s our reasoning why…

What is Business Development?

Sitting somewhere between Sales and Marketing, Business Development (BD) is a varied role, focused towards rapidly driving business growth. This is done by building strong relationships with potential and existing clients, and developing strategic corporate partnerships. In other words you’ll be reaching out to other businesses who might be interested in buying your product, via email, phone or face-to-face networking. You’ll then make sure you keep in regular contact and give them the best possible experience so they come back again and again.

Another key element of BD is identifying companies with a similar customer base to your own and setting up strategic, long-term partnerships with them. For example, the Business Development team here at Instant Impact set up partnerships with Venture Capital firms (who provide funding to early-stage Start-ups). This means that Instant Impact become the exclusive graduate recruiter for all of the Start-ups in their portfolios! Successful partnership building gives you the chance to get really creative and set up deals that could earn your company millions of pounds!

So, as a graduate joining a Start-up in a BD role, what can you expect to be doing day-to-day?

Well, fast-growth Start-up Autotrip recently hired an entry-level Business Development Associate, who is now focussed on lead generation. Their responsibilities include approaching new businesses, closing deals with existing clients, and helping with B2B telephone & digital Marketing. As you can see, the successful candidate is working closely with both the Sales and Marketing teams, allowing them to cut their teeth in two crucial business functions.

How will it prepare you for starting your own business?

Many graduates have aspirations of starting their own businesses, which is fantastic. However, it’s certainly not a bad idea to spend a few years building up your business acumen and gaining the contacts you’ll need to really flourish – And this is exactly what you’ll get from working in Business Development:

  1. You’ll gain experience of both Sales and Marketing, meaning you’ll be really well-equipped to manage these areas of a business and will have insider knowledge about what tactics do and don’t work. These two functions are arguably the most important to get a fledgling company from great idea to great success!
  1. Business Development is all about planning for the future – Making decisions that will continue benefiting your company for years to come. This kind of strategic thinking will be hugely beneficial when it comes to running your own business. You’ll be very comfortable developing a clear vision of where your company should be going and how to get it there.
  1. Possibly most importantly, you’ll have built up a fantastic network of people you can call on to help you out in your new venture. Even better, you’ll have the skills to develop and nurture these relationships, and this network will be a go-to safety net as you start out. Take advantage of your hearty email contact list and never underestimate the wealth of knowledge you can gain from others!

Think Business Development is the way forward for you? Check out all our current graduate jobs and find your perfect opportunity today.

– Instant Impact, a leading graduate recruitment agency. Check out our jobs board for graduate jobs in awesome Start-ups & Scale-ups and blog for more careers advice to get you ahead in the job hunt.

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