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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 101 of 137

@FeeBrown My apologies for just responding to your question on Monday, 11/5. One of the key elements for my success as an Entrepreneur is my ability to adapt to change. I come from a very structured life in my college classrooms. Once I prepared my syllabi for the semester, I knew what I was going to be doing for at least the next 3 months in advance. That is not the case as an Entrepreneur. There is constant change in my life now. In the beginning I would always panic when things didn't go exactly as I had planned. However, in the past 6 years I have learned how to handle the unexpected changes and give up my need to always be in control. This has enabled me to see the other options that are always available. This past week was a perfect example of how my schedule totally changed with unexpected events.

Another key element is being willing to learn new and different ways of providing my services as a Professional Organizer. Every month I schedule some form of training. This can be a Webinar, a workshop, or a conference. This constant training keeps me open to doing things differently.

However, the most important element for my success is compassion. Compassion enables me to understand how difficult it is for my clients to change their lifestyles by letting go of items in their homes so that they can live clutter-free lives. My company  motto is "Organization is not a luxury, it's a lifestyle".

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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 102 of 137

Awesome resources @BeverlyGrandison

 

Thank you for sharing.  

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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 103 of 137

@BeverlyGrandison thank you for sharing those resources.  I know there are key elements to starting and sustaining a business that are applicable to everyone.  Are there different elements a veteran entrepreneurs should subscribe to as they start a business?  Are there any specific challenges or advantages that veterans encounter that civilian entrepreneurs do not?

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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 104 of 137

See post below for additional resource links. I will tell you the Institue for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) is a powerful organization with lots of resources to assist veterans and their family members to become successful entrepreneurs. Check out https://ivmf.syracuse.edu/

 

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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 105 of 137

And yes, there are so many resources out there for everyone.  For veterans, here are a few I highly recommend. IVMF which was mentioned above.

Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) - https://ivmf.syracuse.edu/ - very powerful organization, multifaceted. 

Boots to Business - https://sbavets.force.com/s/

The US Dept of Veteran Affairs - https://www.va.gov/osdbu/programs/ 

The SBA Office of Veteran Business Development - https://www.sba.gov/offices/headquarters/ovbd

 

Definitely start with your local SBA office and they have free workshops, resources that can get you started. https://www.sba.gov/tools/local-assistance/sbdc

 

If you just want to check out start ups pitching their business ideas - 

1 Million Cups - https://www.1millioncups.com/

Your local entrepreneurial centers

 

And @rhettb144340 mentioned others also and of course don't forget the resources AARP has that you have access to!!!! 

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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 106 of 137

@PatriciaB236830 @rhettb144340 @CharlotteB436079 @BeverlyGrandison I want to pivot for a bit.  You all have expressed your success as business owners.  What do you all think are some key elements for being a successful entrepreneur?

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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 107 of 137

@PatriciaB236830 that's great.  What about people who are exploring outside of the wedding/officiant business.  Any recommendations for those folks?

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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 108 of 137

@FeeBrown, I think anyone who is looking for their "next thing" career should explore as many different platforms as possible. For those who are like me and in the wedding industry, I strongly recommend the Knot, Weddings.com and Wedding Wire. They all offer a wealth of information on how to configure your business on their site as well as tons of useful information on promoting your business, tips about trends and how to make them work for you. They also offer periodic workshops and conferences that are very helpful. Thumbtack.com is a more diversified paltform, offering pros from all types of businesses the opportunity to connect with customers. While it serves well as a lead generator, it really doesn't offer anything that is helpful when looking for information about how to start a new business. However, it is an excellent way to begin promoting your business and getting the business new customers. It was instrumental in getting my business off the ground once I had decided what I wanted to do and how I wanted to do it. The only thing I didn't know was how to get my fist customers and Thumbtack.com brought them to me. 

I do believe that anyone who is just starting out but who doesn't have an customer base to begin with should find platforms that are compatible with their business, register and set up a profile. The very best thing that will come out of it will be your reviews...the lifeblood of my business! Once the jobs and positive reviews start coming in, more business will be generated through referrals, associates, etc. 

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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 109 of 137

@rhettb144340 and @BeverlyGrandison I know veteran entrepreneurs encounter some of the same challenges as civilian entrepreneurs as it relates to funding.  Are there organizations that assist this audience with securing start-up funding?

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Re: Small Business Roundtable Discussion with the Experts

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Message 110 of 137

@rhettb144340 you are right.  I don't want to forget to mention IVMF that has a wealth of resources particularly for persons 50+.  @BeverlyGrandison can provide more information about them based her specific use and engagement.

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