My Top 10 Resources - written by Rosemary Cotton

So many resources, so little time! We’re fortunate to have so many resources available to us, but ever feel like you spend as much time looking for them as you do actually reading them? I’ve made a list of my Top 10 resources (in no particular order) that I think are a great place to start and a must for all SBMs:

  1. My local SBM network group

The life of a School Business Professional can be isolated at times and we are often all working towards similar goals, so why reinvent the wheel?!  My local SBM network group is invaluable in enabling me to network with likeminded colleagues and pick their brains as well as benchmarking across schools, working collaboratively where we can and knowing that in a time of need, there will always be sympathetic colleague at the end of a phone line!


  1. ESFA Update

A weekly email sent by the ESFA to the CFO and Accounting Officer at the email address registered with them.  In my opinion, definitely the best way to keep up with information and deadlines from ESFA and worth asking a colleague to forward it on to you if you don’t receive your own copy.


  1. uk Updates

Email alerts which anyone can subscribe to giving notifications when documents and website pages are updated.  You can choose which areas of the wide range of issues covered by you are interested in (I subscribe to anything from ESFA).  It is very difficult to find the correct page on to subscribe on though so probably best to get a colleague who already subscribes to send you the link

Which brings me on to…


  1. Google –

Who doesn’t use Google?  A great way to find all sorts of information and resources such as model policies, as well as possibly the easiest way to find what you are looking for on the website!


  1. Workings of an SBM

A great, thought provoking blog by a longstanding SBM giving interesting (and often amusing) reflections on the daily issues faced by SBMs, or just on life in general.


  1. The SBL Twitter Community - #sbltwitter

A growing online community of SBPs across the country and a great place to chat, ask questions, share advice and generally talk about anything a SBP may face in their daily lives, often with that much needed injection of humour or expression of exasperation!


  1. The School Manager’s Handbook – Hayley Dunn (ISBN 978-1-911382-72-0)

A really interesting and informative book written by a School Business Manager, giving advice, guidance and tips for SBPs at any stage of their career.  Easy to dip into, it includes chapters on leadership, HR, CPD, Finance, Marketing and Time Management with ‘views from experts’ throughout.


  1. How to Run an Academy School – Katie Paxton-Doggett (ISBN 978-1-86072-610-1)

Another really useful book, written by a solicitor and chartered company secretary who works with schools.  It gives clear and concise information on the legislation and regulations regarding running an academy, focusing mainly on governance issues and with some useful model documents.


  1. Health and Safety for Managers, Supervisors and Safety Representatives – Tim Deveaux (ISBN 978-1-904306-84-9)

Published by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, this was the text book when I was studying for my CIEH Health and Safety Course.  I‘m not sure it is in print at present but my well-thumbed copy has proved to be an excellent and easily accessible resource for all things health and safety related.


  1. Mindset How You Can Fulfil Your Potential – Dr Carol S Dweck (ISBN 978-1-78033-200-0)

Recommended by a colleague, this book has made me change my way of thinking over a range of matters, both professionally and personally related.  Without realising at the time, I did have a fixed mindset, always disappointed if things didn’t turn out perfectly and often doubting that I could achieve a new challenge.  This book has helped me develop more of a growth mindset and realise that every mistake comes with an opportunity to learn!


Written by Rosemary Cotton - @SolihullSBM 

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