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Free Business Basics Training Videos

Starting a business can be daunting, which is why the Small Business Development Center exists. We’re here to help. Whether you’re starting your journey into business for the first time or you’re an experienced pro starting your second business-the SBDC has something to offer you. Our Centers offer low-cost classes and workshops on a variety of business topics. The SBDC will also pay a consultant to meet with you to discuss your business. If you are reading this and you’re on the fence about signing up for services-go for it. Find the Center closest to you (click here) and get connected with your local Colorado SBDC.

But what if it’s 3:00 a.m. and you’d like to start your journey into business? What if it’s the weekend? Or you are snowed in at home? If you’re itching to get started and learn about what it takes to go into business for yourself you can start watching our free, online tutorial videos. The Colorado SBDC has posted several great videos on a variety of topics ranging from the basics of starting a business to managing your finances and even basic marketing principles. These videos are a great first step in educating yourself on what it takes to start a business.

Save the Date: National SBDC Day is Coming!

Did you know that Wednesday, March, 18th is National Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Day? SBDC Day is a national celebration of the positive impact America’s Small Business Development Centers have on the small business community and the economy at large. There will be celebrations all over the country including right here in Colorado! The Colorado SBDC will be hosting a National SBDC Event on Thursday, March 19th at the State Capitol Building located at 200 East Colfax Avenue in Denver.

The event will provide members of the small business community an opportunity to network and meet with various legislators, community leaders, and fellow business owners. Colorado SBDC Day will also feature exhibitor tables showcasing some of the best local businesses and local Colorado products. There will also be free food and beverages! If you’d like to attend Colorado SBDC Day on Thursday, March 19, 2020 click here to reserve your free event ticket.

End of the Year Checklist

As we say goodbye to 2019 our thoughts turn to the promise of a new year. And while the start of a new year is a good time to reflect on the work done the previous year, it’s not a time to rest on one’s laurels–there’s still work to be done. So as we turn the calendar page what should business owners be doing? A search online for “small business end of year checklist” yields a mountain of results. Here are a few items that consistently show up on multiple end-of-the-year checklists for business:

1. Adjust your strategies to get where you’d like to go. Taking stock of the last year can inspire you to do better (or continue doing well) it can also help you modify your business goals.

2. Organize. Besides taking a high-level look at your business, all the experts tend to agree that now is the perfect time to organize your business–the files you use and the space on your desk.

3. Inventory. Doing a physical inventory is a great idea and can allow you to evaluate what is (and isn’t) selling.

4. Take a look at your company website–when was the last time you did an audit of your website? An out-of-date website can turn off potential customers and make your business seem less professional. Take a moment to look at your online presence and make sure that it’s 100% accurate.

5. Electronic file back-up. Backing up your computer/cell phones as well as any other crucial files is always a good idea, one that we’re all guilty of neglecting to some degree. Use this time to get everything backed-up so nothing is accidentally lost.

For more end-of-year checklists check out the Small Business Administration’s website.

2020 National Small Business Week Award Nominations

Friendly reminder: there’s still time to submit nominations for the 2020 National Small Business Week Awards. Though National Small Business Week is May 3 through May 9, the awards nomination window is closing next week on January 7th. The National Small Business Awards are issued by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). There are several awards including “Small Business Person of the Year,” “Small Business Exporter of the Year,” and “Phoenix Awards for Disaster Recovery” as well as other awards for procurement, lending, and business investment.

Visit the SBA’s website to learn more about Small Business Week, the various awards, and how you can nominate a business person or small business for an award. But don’t delay, the nominations must be hand-delivered or mailed to the Small Business Administration’s Denver District Office by 3:00 p.m. EST, January 7, 2020.

Free Business Intelligence eLearning Course

In October, the Colorado Secretary of State’s office launched a free online course designed to teach the general public how to use several online government databases in order to access public information. The 90-minute course was created in conjunction with the University of Colorado Leeds School of Business and shows users how to access both Federal and State databases in order to “work with and analyze public data to make informed business decisions.”

The course illustrates how to navigate a variety of State databases that contain information that could be potentially very useful to small business owners from sources ranging from the Department of Revenue, Department of Local Affairs, and more. The course can be accessed on the Secretary of State’s website on their “Tutorials & Training” webpage under the heading “Business Intelligence Center.”

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