As Southwest Florida attracts an ever-growing number of new residents, opportunities abound for small businesses to provide a wide array of products and services in both consumer and business-to business categories.
As any seasoned entrepreneur can attest however, the path to small business success is not always simple or easy.
Even the most energetic and creative small business owner may recognize the value of an experienced mentor to help along the way.
Whether it’s defining a solid, workable plan, dealing with the practicalities of organizing and registering a business, strategizing, executing growth plans, managing finances or any of a host of other issues, a seasoned mentor armed with a powerful set of tools can be a key factor in realizing one’s business vision. avoiding “burnout” and discouragement.
This kind of experienced help, coupled with an independent, objective point of view, can help avoid unwelcome surprises that might otherwise lead to “burnout,” stifle innovation and rob new business owners of creative energy.
Fortunately, there are powerful resources available — at no cost — through the SCORE organization to help small businesses navigate these challenges and achieve their goals
SCORE was formed in 1964 as a resource partner of the U.S. Small Business Administration with a mission to help aspiring and existing businesses succeed by drawing upon the knowledge, talents, and experience of a large network of senior executives, business owners and professionals.
And this mission is being executed very effectively: since its inception the organization has helped more than 11 million people in pursuit of their business goals. In 2020 alone, SCORE helped create more than 45,000 new businesses and nearly 120,000 jobs in more than two dozen industries.
SCORE provides free, confidential advice and mentoring to clients at every stage of the small business cycle.
This includes early stage entrepreneurs who are considering starting a business but need help defining their ideas, building their plan and obtaining financing; start-up businesses seeking to establish their brand and operations and manage their finances; established businesses seeking to grow their revenues or reach new customers; and transitioning businesses planning to close, sell, or otherwise transition out of business ownership.
The local chapter of SCORE volunteers, with headquarters in Port Charlotte, actively supports businesses in southern Sarasota, Charlotte and portions of DeSoto counties.