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Access resources and say yes to starting your business in 2024

By Nicki Donnelson
UniteNews Contributing Writer

Selecting a word of the year can be a way to incorporate New Year’s resolutions into your life with more mindfulness and intention. It’s also a way to focus your efforts and clarify decision-making and prioritization.

Can we propose a word for you? Let’s make Start the word of the year.

At efactory, we work with people who are ready to take a big step forward. But we know there are many individuals who are waiting, overanalyzing, discouraged or hesitant even though they are sitting on something big.

Sound familiar? Let’s look at how we can help you start.

“We’ve got business consultants and mentors who are primed to answer your questions, guide you through complex business planning, and introduce you to important financial and legal documents,” said Chrystal Irons, director of the Missouri Small Business Development Center at Missouri State University.

These consultations are at no cost to you, and they are a great way to introduce you to the necessary steps to start.

Getting started

How about testing the potential of your business idea alongside other aspiring entrepreneurs in Bounce Your Big Idea?

This four-week, online workshop is 100% virtual with live workshops, personalized coaching and feedback. It includes step-by-step activities to move you toward the right idea for a successful business. Applications are now open through Feb. 13. Learn more and apply: https://www.innovatesomo.org/bounce-my-big-idea

This is part of Innovate SOMO and is led by our partner Codefi. Innovate SOMO exists to add higher-wage job opportunities into Missouri’s economy by offering no-cost business support services, technology training and more. By spreading these programs throughout the southernmost 47 counties in Missouri – many that have traditionally been impoverished and have fewer education options – we can improve the quality of life for many.

Along these same lines, we are activating our Early-Stage Business Boot Camps across the region, too. In addition to the lessons and the applicable plans participants will walk away with (that will help start a business), these boot camps will enrich the participants by building new networks of professionals in a similar stage. This workshop series also exposes participants to guest speakers from a variety of industries and successful entrepreneurs.

We’re launching several more boot camps this spring. Stay updated at efactory.missouristate.edu/bootcamp.

Financial training

It’s easy to feel threatened by the unknown. Or to get cold sweats from flashbacks to math or accounting tests gone wrong. While there are accountants you can hire to help with your financials, it’s always smart to know the basics of what to look for and how to produce important financial documentation.

This spring we’ve got two courses that will help you start on your journey to understanding these financials: QuickBooks Online (the basics) and QuickBooks Online (advanced). If you have never worked with this robust tool, the basics class is made for you to learn how to navigate and produce basic financial statements.

The advanced class will build on your knowledge, so if you’ve ever used QuickBooks Online, even if you don’t think you’re prepared for advanced-level learning on it, we recommend registering for this course. You’ll follow along with an instructor who can show you how to get more out of the program.

You can find all of our training at efactory.missouristate.edu/training-calendar.

Reach out

Of course, we offer space for you to grow your idea into a business. We offer flexible options for workspaces, including coworking and small private offices with shared amenities. It lowers your overhead and allows you to build a business rather than having to worry about the details of operating a small office facility.

If Start is your word this year, congratulations. We look forward to offering you any assistance you need.

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