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Sources of Business Assistance

biz_assistanceGetting a little help from others who have gone before you; those who have already been there and done that in the business world; can give you an added extra advantage. No matter how driven you are, no matter how well you do your homework, you can't possibly know all there is to know to make your business successful. Well, no worries! There are plenty of people out there willing to give their help. Some of them are state or federal resources; others are private resources. Here's a list you should definitely hit!

Government Resources for Small Business

Your State's Division of Economic Opportunity

Sometimes called other things, like the Department of Business Development, the state department that handles business will have a list of grants and funding sources available to small businesses. You may qualify for these grants or special funding, depending upon what category your business fits into. For example, businesses that support agriculture may be eligible for certain grants, as may businesses started and run by women and minorities. Contact your state department for more specific information.

The Small Business Association

The Small Business Association, otherwise known as the SBA, is willing to share just about all the information there is on starting and running a business. Check out their web site, www.sba.gov for starters. If you are in need of funding you'll definitely want to check out ways the SBA can help you secure business financing. If you are looking for information about laws and business regulations, the SBA can help with that as well.

Another wonderful thing about the SBA is that it connects you to other non-SBA resources on both the state and federal level. Used correctly, the SBA is a great resource that can help your business get off the ground, grow, and be the best it can be!

The Internal Revenue Service

The Internal Revenue Service, known as the IRS, is often associated with negative connotations. But if you are a business looking to navigate the sometimes confusing world of state and federal taxes, the IRS can be your best friend. The IRS has lots of advice when it comes to business taxation, as well as literature, forms, and publications. You might want to check out the IRS's web site, www.irs.gov, and find the Tax Info for Business section. This page has something called the Business Tax Kit, which includes answers to business tax questions as well as all the forms you'll need.

Private Resources


For anyone starting a business, S.C.O.R.E. is one of the best things going. The acronym stands for "Service Corp of Retired Executives." What is S.C.O.R.E.? It is a group of very successful business people who are willing to lend their experience to people just starting out. For free! Volunteers at S.C.O.R.E. are willing to sit down with you to discuss just about any aspect of running your business. They'll help you do everything from write your business plan to find sources of funding. Most communities have a local S.C.O.R.E. office. To find one near you, access their web site at www.score.org.

Other Entrepreneurs

Other entrepreneurs are a great resource when it comes to setting your business up to succeed. You can meet other entrepreneurs through friends and family, or through organizations and support groups for entrepreneurs in your area. Most entrepreneurs are willing to share advice with newbies, including mistakes they made along the way and how to avoid them. Other entrepreneurs can also answer questions about funding options, business taxation, human resource issues, and marketing and public relations. A great way to network with other business people is to contact your local Chamber of Commerce. Most chambers hold monthly or bi-monthly events that allow local business people to rub elbows and lend support. These people have survived some of the same issues you will be facing.


Wait, how can you get business assistance from competitors? Well, sometimes you can't. There are situations, however, for example you are located in different geographical areas, where competitors are willing to share what they have learned. Sometimes these relationships even turn into strategic alliances!

Set Up a Board of Directors

If you are looking for assistance that can supply with a lots of help in a variety of situations, you'll get a lot of bang for your buck with a Board of Directors. The best Boards comprise people with different experience and backgrounds. Make it a practice to meet once every other month or so, and bounce ideas and questions off your board.---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------If you are a business owner get listed at Best Repair site, part of Localwin Network.
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