Well-established companies with years of experience, solid financial backing and consulting firms under contract are scrambling to adapt to the “new reality” of business success in 2020. But what about the small business owners—and those hoping to become small business owners? They may have all of the talent, skills and motivation needed to move forward, but they want to make sure to do it right. They’re looking for answers to questions like:
- How do I know if the plan I’m putting together will guide me toward success?
- Do I fully understand what motivates people to buy products and services like mine?
- Did I accurately forecast the profit I will make—and what if I don’t hit that target?
- Have I really considered and addressed the legal, tax and liability requirements that come with business ownership?
To help entrepreneurs find answers to their questions, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) created the SCORE Association, also known as “Counselors to America’s Small Businesses.” It’s a nonprofit association with more than 11,000 business counselors and 320 chapters—including one in Peoria.
Last year the Peoria SCORE team helped 38 new companies get started, which created dozens of new jobs, and hosted 668 business owners and managers in face-to-face workshops and online webinars. Twenty-five certified Peoria SCORE counselors live in or near this city, and they have professional experience in accounting, finance, marketing, manufacturing, management, legal issues, human resources, business plans and other critical topics. They understand what it means to own a business in central Illinois, having had businesses of their own.
For over 50 years, SCORE has helped more than 11 million entrepreneurs plan, start and grow their companies. All of these services are offered free to those who request them, and all consultations are confidential. To contact a Peoria SCORE volunteer, call (309) 676-0755 or email email@example.com. For more information, visit peoria.score.org. PM