In business, networking is essential to starting and growing something that will last. But in the beginning, it might seem like a monumental task to find and make connections that will have a meaningful impact. We think the best way to start your business network is with a business mentor, someone who has been there, done that, and learned a few lessons along the way that they can share. We’re going to explore why mentorship matters and talk about the amazing network of folks right here in Cleveland that are ready to help you and your small business!
It is no secret that we are living in a highly integrated digital society—if there is information you want or need, it is just a few keystrokes away on the World Wide Web. But just because you can find information doesn’t mean you actually will know what to do with it. That’s where connecting with a person with more experience and knowledge comes in handy. In business ownership—especially if you are a first-time business owner—that person you should be connecting with is a mentor! According to Forbes, 30% of entrepreneurs who worked with a mentor just one time saw growth in their business. Think about that—after just one interaction with a more experienced business owner, folks were empowered to take steps that helped their business grow! Mentors can serve as sage guides, honest sounding boards, accountability coaches, and much more—they really can be the key to your small business’ success!
SCORE Business Mentoring
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) knows how beneficial it is for small business owners to connect with more seasoned professionals, so they created the national SCORE Mentoring network. SCORE is a cross-country network of 250 chapters of volunteer business mentors. These mentors come from all industries, have years of experience navigating small business ownership, and volunteer their time and knowledge to helping new and struggling business owners achieve their goals and overcome challenges.
Northeast Ohio is lucky to have its very own SCORE chapter right here in Cleveland! Cleveland SCORE provides access to local business mentors, webinars, and workshops designed to benefit small business owners from all walks of life. The program provides free access to people, resources, and programs dedicated to your small business success!
- Mentors—SCORE mentors are all current or retired business owners, executives, or managers. They are trained in mentorship methods and receive yearly ethics training. The directory of Cleveland SCORE mentors provides you with information on their areas of expertise, how they can help you as a mentor, and how to contact them directly.
- Online Resources—Even after you connect with a business mentor, you may still want to explore some ideas and questions on your own. To help with this, Cleveland SCORE provides free access to articles, blogs, and business templates designed to help you do your small business research.
- Webinars & Workshops—Every month there are several free and low-cost live webinars and workshops both in-person and online. Topics include business strategy, using different tools and resources effectively, business funding, and much, MUCH more. Live workshops not for you? No problem—they have a library of recorded sessions that you can browse as you want and need them!
Team Up with Growth Capital
At Growth Capital, our focus is your success as a small business owner. Our team of dedicated professionals has spent years working with business owners to start, grow, and cultivate their small business dreams. We know just how powerful connecting with the right people, programs, and resources can be, and we are committed to helping local small business owners find the connections that are right for their goals. Contact us today to learn more about how we can work together for your business’ success!