The beautiful thing about learning is no one can take it away from you.
- BB King
October is National Learning and Development Month. For a small business owner running a busy enterprise, the thought of slowing down to take a skills class or read a business book might sound ludicrous. However, learning keeps minds sharp, improves confidence and can help you run your small business more effectively and take it to the next level. Here are some affordable ways you can take advantage of educational resources created for small business owners.
Small Business Administration
In addition to a great website packed with high quality content, the SBA has created an online small business learning center that covers everything from starting to business to marketing to financing.
If you want to go offline, you can walk into a local Small Business Development Center. SBDCs provide assistance to small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs throughout the United States and its territories. SBDCs help existing businesses remain competitive in the global marketplace and are hosted by leading universities and state economic development agencies.
SBDC advisors provide small business owners a variety of free business consulting and low-cost training services including business plan development, lending assistance and more.
SCORE is America’s premier source of free and confidential small business advice. There are over 300 SCORE offices across the country offering free business mentoring and low- or no-cost workshops.
Thousands of working and retired business professionals have volunteered to support small business nationwide and business mentoring is free.
Online courses are the way to go if you’re busy running a small business. Coursera is an education platform that partners with top universities and organizations worldwide. They offer courses online for anyone to take.
Take out your smartphone, plug in earbuds and you’re ready to go. There are a plethora of podcasts out there specifically tailored to the small business owner. Check out our blog post introducing you to the cream of the crop: 5 Great Small Business Podcasts.
We looked at dozens of small business books and read reviews from real small business owners. Check out our blog post and discover some of the best books we found to guide you on your small business journey. Top 10 Recommended Business Books
If you’re not a tweeter, the social media platform Twitter can seem like an intimidating mystery. But Twitter is easy to follow and a great source of news and information, especially for niche audiences like small business owners. Influencers, publications and organizations provide valuable, easy-to-consume information for entrepreneurs. Tweets give a short description and a link that you can follow to learn more. We’ve pulled together a list of tweeters every small business owner should follow here.
Do you need extra funds for your small business? An SBA loan is the best bet for small businesses with low rates, long terms and low monthly payments. Visit SmartBiz today and discover in about five minutes if you’re qualified for an SBA loan.