All About SCORE: A Small Business Networking Resource
Dan Levenson October 06, 2015
Do you know about SCORE and its promise of providing a large network of business mentors to get your small business off the ground? If not, you need to look into this non-profit organization supported by the Small Business Administration. They’re out there to help you.
Once an acronym for “Service Corps of Retired Executives”, it’s no longer recognized under that title. Because it consists of volunteers who provide business mentoring for small businesses nationwide, it now comprises both retired and employed business people.
Having mentors in business is absolutely essential, and that’s the true heart of SCORE. They have over 11,000 volunteers nationwide, plus 320 chapters available, so you can have the certainty of finding help no matter where you live.
What makes it even better is that while you can work with mentors for the life of your business, SCORE has plenty of resources where you can get immediate education on specific topics. They provide the perfect balance of both online and offline mentoring, and you shouldn’t hesitate to use all their resources.
Even so, you’re probably wondering how to sign up and how the mentoring works. Let’s take a look at how easy SCORE makes it for you. They also want you to share your success story with others as part of a symbiotic process in making all of today’s small businesses successful.
Finding a Mentor
SCORE makes searching for a mentor across the country a simple process. You simply type your zip code in their search box and they’ll show you listings of mentors in your area that are readily available for consultation. You can submit a request to work with a mentor, which doesn’t always mean working in person. You can submit business questions you need answered immediately with guaranteed expert answers.
These mentors are there to work long-term as well where they’ll help you with all of your business goals. As long as the mentor stays active, they’ll also work with you indefinitely, which is invaluable considering you don’t pay anything.
Your biggest challenge is coming up with a business plan you know will propel you to a successful level within your first year. SCORE is there to help you find the right approach toward the above goal.
Methods of Educating You on a Business Plan
Thanks to SCORE having a huge library of updated workshops and webinars, you can have amazing access to expert tutorials on creating a perfect business plan. Mentors will work one-on-one with you as well if necessary, though the Web content is great when you need answers in a hurry.
You’ll learn everything from the basics of business plans to creating well-organized financial statements. Many courses are even in other languages (especially Spanish), so you have bilingual lessons at the ready.
Keep in mind your mentors can additionally help you with an expert business outlook for the industry you’re in. This helps immensely in crafting a business plan that deals in reality.
Other Business Categories SCORE Provides
It’s not just the basics that SCORE provides for you. They cover all ground in small business, including marketing advice, all aspects of financing, plus acquiring the right technology. You’ll even have thorough mentoring in business management, which includes guiding you to the right path on customer service to life/work balance.
You’ll find plenty of inspiration through other business success stories on SCORE’s site. However, they want you to submit your own success story, as mentioned above. You can even become a volunteer yourself in a local chapter after submitting your own or a similar success story to help others.