Entrepreneurs & Small Businesses
Whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur or an owner of a small business, we want to help you succeed. Entrepreneurs play a key role in our economy by creating jobs, providing services, and investing capital in the community.
Personal development not only helps you improve on your weaknesses but can also help you to develop your strengths. Successful entrepreneurs are constantly learning, growing and striving to better themselves and their employees. Continuous self-development is vital to the success of any business.
Knowing where to start can be overwhelming for a budding entrepreneur. Planning in the early stages will set you on a course for success.
- Simple Steps to Starting Your Business
(Download PDF here)
- Write Your Business Plan
- Patent Process Overview
- Business News Daily – Step by Step Guide to Starting Your Business
- 35-Step Guide to Starting a Business
- Need a Business Idea?
- 18 Ways to Find Customers
- Four Simple Ways to Find Customers
- Five Biggest Challenges to Starting a Business and How to Overcome Them
- Starting a Business in Alabama
- SBA 10 Steps to Start Your Business
A business plan will help you gain clarity, focus and confidence. As you write down your goals, strategies and action steps, your business becomes real. Also, many financial institutions require a written business plan before lending money. Using a template is a great way to organize your thoughts and ideas and make sure you haven’t missed anything.
When starting a business, one of the biggest challenges faced by most entrepreneurs is a lack of capital. There are many resources out there to assist entrepreneurs and small business owners in finding the path that works for them. It is unlikely that you will receive a grant to start your business, but there are many loans geared toward start-ups and small businesses.
- Alabama Capital Network
- Eleven Ways to Better Manage Cash Flow in Business
- Questions to Ask Before You Apply for a Small Business Loan
- Calculate Your Start-up Costs
- Get State and Federal Tax ID Numbers
- Alabama Department of Revenue – Guide to Starting a Small Business
- Cullman Electric Cooperative – Revolving Loan Fund
- SBA Loan for Start-ups
- U.S. Chamber of Commerce Save Small Business Initiative
- NARCOG Business Growth Fund
SCORE hosts free, live webinars every week on tips and strategies presented by business experts and mentors. They also have a link to previously recorded webinars, so you can find the topic that fits your needs.
SCORE is a tremendous resource to start-ups and small businesses. Its mission is to foster vibrant small business communities through mentoring and education. With the nation’s largest network of volunteers and expert business mentors, SCORE has helped more than 11 million entrepreneurs since 1964.
Marketing / Social Media
Social media is a powerful platform. It helps you connect with your customers, increase awareness about your brand, and boost your leads and sales. Using social media can help you grow your audience on a small budget. Creating an influential social media presence is key to connecting to your audience.
These are just a few of the many resources out there to guide entrepreneurs on their journey.
- U.S. Small Business Administration
- Economic Development Partnership of Alabama
- Sky’s the Limit
- Alabama Department of Commerce – Business Development Division
- Small Business Publications – Ala. Department of Commerce
- Women’s Business Center – North Alabama
- Center for American Entrepreneurship
- Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center – Business Resources
- The University of Alabama – Center for Business and Economic Research
- City of Cullman - Business Info
- Cullman County Sales Tax Office