Why Choose StartSmart?

Whether you are a new business (in business 2 years or less), or are still in the planning phase, building a business takes the right tools—and a lot of hard work. SBDC StartSmart will equip you to be successful! 

SBDC StartSmart helps attendees to: 

  • Evaluate & refine your business concept 
  • Improve your knowledge of business concepts 
  • Research markets and competition 
  • Develop a financial forecast to improve chances of success 
  • Develop a thorough, practical business plan 
  • On-going consulting from SBDC professionals keeps you on track 

SBDC StartSmart was developed by the University of Georgia Small Business Development Center. This year’s program is tailored to being held virtually to facilitate virtual discussion, class engagement, & mastery of content. Participation in StartSmart will also allow access to online business planning software. The program is facilitated by specially trained SBDC consultants and a long-term relationship with the SBDC and follow-up consulting is available and encouraged. 


Owning your own business is the American dream. Building it to withstand the test of time requires a unique set of tools.  SBDC StartSmart provides the resources, support, and motivation to put your dream within reach. 

SBDC StartSmart™ provides the tools to: 

  • Evaluate your concept and develop plans to move forward. 
  • Improve knowledge of business fundamentals. 
  • Build an infrastructure for business operations and processes. 

SBDC StartSmart graduates acquire: 

  • An actionable business plan and access to business planning software 
  • Access to financial and business resources. 
  • A network of entrepreneurial peers and professionals. 

In this multi-session program, learn to plan and analyze your vision by creating a thoroughly researched and tested business plan. All sessions are led by experienced SBDC facilitators who help create a unique and powerful learning experience. 


  • Designed specifically for new business owners (2 years in business or less)and serious entrepreneurs ready to start a business, SBDC StartSmart provides the resources and support to put your dreams within reach.StartSmart will help you build a business for today’s challenging times!
  • This year’s StartSMART will be held entirely virtually, so participants are expected to have access to stable internet and a device with microphone and webcam capabilities.
  • While StartSmart is entirely virtual, we recommend participating in the program hosted by the center closest to your business. This facilitates networking with other local new business owners, as well as professional business contacts in your community. Not to mention, a headstart on building a strong relationship with a business consultant in your service area!
  • To get the ball rolling, please complete an application or contact your local SBDC office.


Eight modules cover critical issues for new businesses: 

MODULE 1: Business Success – How do we get there? 

MODULE 2: Opportunity & Solutions 

MODULE 3: Marketing for Success 

MODULE 4: Digital Marketing & Online Strategies 

MODULE 5: Navigating Human Resources 

MODULE 6: Operations & Managing by the Numbers 

MODULE 7: Management with a Plan 

MODULE 8: Plan, Run, Review, Revise 

SBDC StartSmart programs include 16 hours of instruction delivered over a period of four weeks.  Sessions will be held twice a week for 2 hours each. Check your preferred location for details on when their 2021 program will be held. 

Dates and Locations

StartSmart Kennesaw State
Starting a Business (Online)
January 18 | January 20 | February 01 | February 03 | February 15 | February 17 | February 22 | February 24
01:00 PM to 03:30 PM
StartSMART Savannah/Statesboro
Planning a Business (Online)
January 18 | January 20 | January 25 | January 27 | February 01 | February 03 | February 08 | February 10
02:00 PM to 04:30 PM
StartSmart Columbus
Planning a Business (Online)
January 19 | January 21 | January 26 | January 28 | February 02 | February 04 | February 09 | February 11
09:30 AM to 12:00 PM
StartSmart Georgia State University
Planning a Business (Online)
January 26 | February 02 | February 09 | February 16 | February 23 | March 02 | March 09 | March 16
11:30 AM to 02:00 PM
StartSmart Gwinnett
Other (Workshop)
February 18 | February 25 | March 04 | March 11
08:30 AM to 04:00 PM