Whether you’re a brand new entrepreneur or a small business owner who has been in business for years, expanding your knowledge and fine-tuning your skillsets are crucial for sustained success.
Professional development never goes out of style, and if you make it a priority, it can set your business apart from your competitors. Dedicating time and energy on a continual basis to honing your talents and learning new things will show your customers that:
- You’re dedicated to providing them with the best products and services.
- You can provide them with more value than your competition can.
- You have a grasp on the bigger picture and are better able to propose solutions.
- You’re worth every penny they’re paying you.
Finding Opportunities For Professional Development Isn’t Difficult. Finding Discipline To Follow Through With Professional Development Can Be.
As you explore how you might boost your knowledge and improve your skills, consider these effective and affordable options:
- Reputable industry or topical blogs—Look for blogs that specifically address topics related to your types of products and services and for those about managing a business.
- E-books—Ditto on what we said about blogs.
- Business podcasts—With a vast selection of podcasts about leadership, marketing, business, and industry trends out there, you have plenty of options. To stay productive when you sit down to listen, consider hitting “play” while you’re taking care of “no brainer” busy work.
- SBA online training center courses—In addition to a wealth of informative articles, the SBA also offers a number of free online courses to guide you through different aspects of starting and managing a business.
- Local lunch & learns, seminars, etc.—Chambers of commerce often offer these types of programs to help their members manage their businesses better. They also provide the opportunity to network with other professionals in the community.
- SCORE resources—At SCORE Maine, we offer articles on our blog, free local workshops, and online workshops. Consider checking out the articles, webinars, and other resources on the SCORE website,
To make the most out of any of the above professional development tools, also consider signing up for free face-to-face or email mentoring with certified SCORE mentors. They have knowledge of and experience in every aspect of starting and running a business, so they’re well equipped to guide you as you navigate the opportunities and challenges of entrepreneurship.
Ready to get your small business off the ground or take it to the next level? Contact us to get started!