|Training Programme for Women Entrepreneurs in the Food-processing Industry - Volume I (UNIDO, 1985, 356 p.)|
|Recruitment and Selection of Participants|
It is important from the outset to be clear that the phrase "women entrepreneurs" is far too comprehensive to be used as a definition of the chosen target group; before any course is undertaken, the organisers must be clear as to the particular group which they want to reach.
Questions such as the following must be clearly answered:
· Do we want to train women who are already in full-time business, those who are part-time who want to remain part-time, those who are part-time and want to go full-rime, or those who are not yet in business at all, or some combination of these?
· Do we want to train the urban elite, the reasonably well-educated middle class, or poorer women with a rudimentary formal education?
· Do we want to train people from the whole country, from urban or from rural areas, from one region or one town only?
These guidelines are based on the following definition of the target group; it is clear that the guidelines, and the content and structure of the course itself, would be different if a different target group was intended:
· Women with a functional level of literacy and numeracy, whose main source of income is or will be their entrepreneurial activity in the food-processing sector, be it on a part-time or a full-time basis.
It is important to bear in mind that the target group defined for a specific course should be as homogeneous as possible. Differences in education, and in social and economic background can hamper the group dynamics and make it difficult to meet the needs of the individual participant.
Any form of training for women entrepreneurs or anyone else, should of course only be undertaken after it has been ascertained that there is a need for training of the general type that is being considered. Such a need can only be identified and clarified through a rather detailed survey of the selected group themselves, which should be supplemented with, but never replaced by, discussions with others who claim to know what the group needs.
When such a survey has been undertaken, and it has been decided that a particular programme of training is appropriate, at a time and place which is convenient for the prospective trainees, the following tasks must be undertaken in order to obtain a suitable training group:
1. Attract suitable applicants, in such a way that they will as much as possible select themselves, because they will understand the objectives of the proposed programme and will decide for themselves whether it is suitable for them.
2. Send information to those who express an initial interest, in such a way as to facilitate further "self-selection", and obtain some initial information from those who do decide to apply.
3. Select from those who apply those for whom it appears that the course will be useful and invite them to be interviewed.
4. Interview those who accept the invitation, and from those interviewed select the course participants.
5. Inform those who have been selected, and those who have not.
The following guidelines attempt to suggest how these five tasks should be carried out; clearly what is actually done will depend on local circumstances, and the guidelines are in no way intended to be followed to the letter. The questions included in the various forms can be asked orally, but there must be opportunities for oral interviews to take place.