Whether in business for two years or twenty years, many small business owners are so busy working IN their business, they neglect working ON their business. (What the heck does that even mean? Work IN your business or ON your business??!)
When you are working IN your business, you’re focusing on day-to-day tasks and reacting to the daily challenges that you face as a business owner. Every second of every day could be spent doing it. Working in your business keeps it running, but not necessarily moving forward. When you are working ON your business, you’re planning how to get new business and developing a long-term strategy for where and how you want your company to proceed. Working on your business focuses on the future, which is the only way to grow your business beyond where it is today.
GrowSmart recognizes the need for flexibility and agility in today’s rapidly changing environment. Using a one-page strategy map designed specially for this program, participants identify their company’s goals and the strategies to achieve them.
SBDC GrowSmart™ graduates gain:
- A strategic business plan with a long-term vision and strategies.
- A mastery of key business concepts.
- A network of entrepreneurial peers and professional resources.
SBDC GrowSMART is a one-day a week program for five weeks offered only once per year. If your business is ready for growth, SBDC GrowSMART gives you the tools and strategies to reach your goals.
Ask yourself, where do you want your business to be in the next few years? And then plan for it.
See how GrowSMART helped these Georgia entrepreneurs build a foundation for growth, propelling their businesses forward:
Amanda Crook, owner of Pawtropolis, came to the SBDC to assist in acquiring a loan to open her business. Ten years later, with 25 employees and trainers, an award-winning business and a facility filled to capacity, Crook again turned to the SBDC. After attending the SBDC GrowSmart™ program, she asked UGA SBDC in Athens Area Director, then Carol McDonell, to help her create projections for a $2.2 million loan she received and will use to build a second, larger facility on land she had purchased. READ FULL ARTICLE
“She helped me get to the concrete numbers that would make my dreams a reality.” -Amanda Crook
Nelson Burke had started The Engineer Guy in 2003 with $5,000, a cellphone and a desk in his attic. He enjoyed working in mold making and casting materials for industrial uses, and knew he would eventually start a business. So when he was laid off, he “parlayed a severance package into taking a shot at following my dreams,” he says.
He attended SBDC GrowSMART in 2012. Hair and makeup business expert Judiffier Pearson had just joined the UGA SBDC and led the final exam session. Six months later, Burke came to her for strategic advice on how to compete with West Coast suppliers.
From 2012 to 2015, The Engineer Guy grew from seven employees to 11 and increased sales by 76 percent, to $3.1 million. Burke is now working with Pearson on a strategic plan to grow the company to $5 million in sales. READ FULL ARTICLE
“I give Judiffier and the SBDC office a lot of credit for helping me. I wasn’t going to allow myself to fail, therefore it was important to me to become accountable to them, and it worked.” -Nelson Burke
Sisters Eshonda Blue and Jessica Wright discovered a need faced by many southwest Georgia seniors, they saw a business opportunity that led them to the University of Georgia SBDC.
UGA SBDC in Albany Area Director, Debbie Finney, met the sisters at SBDC GrowSMART and helped them complete a business plan that included a SWOT analysis and financial, marketing and operations strategies. They also worked together to develop financial projections for a new personal care home in Americus, which they opened in 2013, and they purchased a building in downtown Americus for a new headquarters.
Innovative Senior Solutions has since grown to more than 100 employees and its sales revenues have grown 100 percent, reports Blue. READ FULL ARTICLE
“The SBDC has been very beneficial to us,” says Wright. “Debbie has guided us by helping us know what is available to grow to the next level.” -Eshonda Blue