About the Project

Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) are considered the backbone of the European economy, providing jobs and innovation across the European Union.

About the project

  • Counselling guidelines have been created to look closely at the specificity of each stage of the 6-step process and to recommend possible advice and tools for facilitation purposes. Based on different backgrounds each individual process may vary from company to company.

    The four guidelines are:

    Final guidelines to The 6-step process (pdf)

    Final Guidelines to Spider Web Tool (pdf)

    SNOwMan guideline for transnational networking and cooperation (pdf)

    SNOwMan Business Model Guideline (pdf)


  • Keynote: Taurimas Valys

    "The Phenomenon of Overall "Family Investor" Parameter During All Stages of Business Financing: Diversified Targets & Needs of Potential Investors"

    Read the presentation here (pdf)


    Keynote: Kim Klyver

    "Growth in owner-managed SMEs - Uniqueness, challenges and opportunities"

    Read the presentation here (pdf)


    Dr. Max Hogeforster, Chairman Hanse Parlament

    Presentation institutionalization strategy

    Read the presentation here (pdf)

    • 13 partners and 8 associated partners collaborate across 5 European countries to improve counselling for owner-managers.
    • The project has 36 months to fulfil its aims. The project runs from October 2017 to September 2020.
    • SNOwMan has a total budget of €2,085,850.00-  €1,631,588.00 of which has been allocated by Interreg Baltic Sea Region.
    • Approximately two million SMEs in the EU are manufacturing SMEs – constituting around 10 percent of all SMEs in the EU.
    • Target group: owner-managed manufacturing SMEs with 5 to 50 employees.
    • 148 owner-managed SMEs will receive non-financial support as part of the project development and testing.
    • 68 SMEs will cooperate with Higher Education Institutions in the creation of the counselling tools.
    • The main output is a counselling toolbox that will contain 4 elements including a 6-step counselling process concept and a spider web tool. 


  • The SNOwMan project focuses on SMEs, which are both owned and managed by the same person. To unleash the full potential and achieve growth, it can be useful to engage in counselling with business intermediaries.

    Unfortunately, the existent professional tools are not suitable for the owner-managers’ needs, thereby making it difficult to find common ground in the counselling process. 

    Based on this, the mission of SNOwMan is to develop tools that ease the cooperation between SME owner-managers and business intermediaries. By developing a counselling toolbox, it is hoped business intermediaries will have a better premise when counselling owner-managers.

  • The counselling toolbox will contain:

    • A 6-step counselling process
    • A spider web tool

    The 6-step counselling process starts with an introduction where the owner-manager and business intermediary establish a respectful and trustful relationship. At this stage, the intermediary will interview the owner-manager to explore the potential of the cooperation/counselling.

    The next step will be to uncover the owner-manager’s visions for the company and identify the challenges faced by the company. Once the challenges have been identified, the intermediary and owner-manager will draw up a strategy and action plan for the company.

    Lastly, the outcome of the strategy and action plan will be measured and evaluated using the decided methods and indicators. 

    The spider web tool will be integrated into the identification of challenges. The tool will be used to identify and graduate the 8 most significant challenges faced by the owner-manager.

    Both tools will be supported by instruction guidelines on how to use them. 

  • The project is organised as illustrated bellow.

    Organisationens opbygning i Project Snowman

    The Project Steering Committee (PSC) is the highest authority of the project. The PSC has the overall responsibility of the project and must ensure that the project goes according to plan. The PSC will meet five times during the project period. Both Higher Educational Institutions and Business Support Organisations are represented in the PSC.

    The members are:
    Susan Dalum (Chairman), VIA University College
    Max Hogeforster, Hanseatic Parliament
    Minttu Lampinen, Häme University of Applied Sciences Ltd.
    Jelena Stankeviciené, Vilnius Gediminas Technical University
    Julita Wasilczuk, Gdansk University of Technology
    Johanna Kokkomäki, Finnish Institute for Enterprise Management
    Sigitas Besagirskas, Vilnius Industry and Business Association
    Karsten Leth, BusinessHorsens
    Henryk Stasinski, Free Entrepreneurship Association, Regional Department Gdansk

    On a day-to-day basis, it is the Project Management Team (PMT) that is responsible for monitoring the progress of the outputs, resources and time.

    Each work package is led by a WP leader, who has the overall responsibility of the WP while each activity in the WP also has an activity leader.