Tomorrow evening, we will conclude our first session of the Greater Freeport Partnership Community Business Academy (CBA). The CBA is an experiential, interactive virtual learning program for aspiring and current business owners. Over the past twelve weeks class participants have learned basic business skills, deepened enthusiasm for their business ideas and connected with other ambitious entrepreneurs. During the course, participants became familiar with financial, accounting, marketing, insurance, and legal processes and professionals to build a solid foundation for a successful business.
This first academy cohort was small. We had two female small business owners participate, both in varying stages of their businesses. It has been exciting to see both women reexamine and study their businesses. Entrepreneurs are often so busy running their businesses that they don’t have time to PLAN for their business. This class gave them a safe space and time to do just that. This class encouraged them to refine their ‘business why’. Why am I in business? They have gained an understanding of how their products and services compare to area competition, and thought more about how to handle cash flow, business branding and marketing. At times, class assignments were challenging, and questions forced them to think critically about their existing business practices. These entrepreneurs should be extremely proud of their hard work!
The goal of the class is to help the entrepreneur build a strong foundation for their business by helping them gain a deeper understanding of their own business, learn best practices, and learn what local, state and national resources are available to them along their business journey. Building a rich entrepreneur ecosystem is a priority. Business ownership is a vehicle for personal and legacy wealth creation and builds a more resilient local economy. Partnership staff are in the planning process for our next CBA in 2023. More information will be forthcoming. In the meantime, the Partnership will continue to support and counsel entrepreneurs.
Remember, spending locally this holiday season is a great way to support our local businesses and entrepreneurs!
Andrea Schultz Winter is the Development Director for the Greater Freeport Partnership. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 815-233-1354