Small Business Resources
I’m launching a new counseling business next month. While I know about counseling, I have been trying to soak up as much as possible about the business aspect. Like most start ups, I want to know how to spend my money wisely to make the most of my investments. Needless to say I was intrigued to find out about the Small Business Development Center, a joint effort between UGA and the Small Business Administration. They are specifically designed to help new and existing businesses succeed in order to stimulate the economy. Here are some of the resources they have to offer:
~Free and confidential business consultations, including assistance with business plan development, market analysis and marketing strategies, financial analysis, compliance and legal issues, and help with applying for loans. Consultants must have a Master’s degree and significant business experience.
~Free and low cost training programs, offered online or in classroom sessions. They have separate and specific trainings targeted toward different groups based on experience and interests. The Entrepreneurial Development Certification Program (EDCP) is designed for the new business owner. FastTrac is designed for the experienced business owner. ExportGA is a program offered to those businesses who are ready to expand into international markets. Additionally, the SBDC offers additional trainings for minority and women business owners.
~Research for communities and business owners. Census data, information from the Georgia Department of Labor, business owner survey results and much more is compiled in one central location for business owners to take advantage of.
~Business articles, fact sheets, new business tips, links to important business and government websites and forms, and income tax guides. They also have a frequently asked questions section.
~They even offer scholarships to reduce the costs of the trainings that aren’t free.
If you are a small business owner, work for a start up company, or are thinking of going into business for yourself you’re going to want to check out these resources. You can visit them online at www.sbdc.org. Happy savings!