As with other businesses large and small, the management of a small business requires attention to detail, creative problem solving skills, entrepreneurial abilities and interpersonal skills. Entrepreneurial skills are the ones needed to develop products, or services, whether produced by hand, machine or service, personal, professional, trade or business products. Professional skills include accounting and bookkeeping. Management skills include decision making, supervision, delegating responsibilities and planning. All these skills plus the ability to communicate effectively and work well with others are required for success in operating a small business.
It is imperative that small business owners understand the importance of entrepreneur skills and the various types of entrepreneur training courses that are available. A small business owner needs the skills of both a salesperson and a customer service manager. In addition, the owner must have good interpersonal skills in order to coordinate and communicate with people from all walks of life. Also, a small business owner must be highly organized and detail oriented and possess problem solving and analytical skills.
There are numerous small business associations that provide training and help for small business owners. The National Foundation for Credit Counseling, Inc. (NFCC) is one of the most prominent NFCCs in the United States and conducts an annual conference, “NFCC Certified Senior Advisors Seminar,” on a semiannual basis. This seminar is designed to provide small business owners an opportunity to become better informed about credit counseling and to experience live training from some of the leading experts in this field. Another important association is the Association of Personal Financial Advisors, Inc. (APFA). APFA was formed in 1979 and is a non-profit membership organization that provides credit counseling and financial research services to thousands of people.
Another organization that offers many opportunities for small businesses is the National Association of Professional Development and Counseling. NAPDA offers a wide range of professional development seminars and workshops to professionals such as accountants, lawyers, insurance agents, and physicians. This professional development program focuses on providing certified professional development and counseling to help these professionals to improve their understanding and utilization of information technology in the workplace and in their personal lives. The NAPDA also sponsors a number of national conferences that bring together business owners and professional development professionals.
For many small business owners, having professional development and counseling at their fingertips is invaluable. Many business owners attend seminars and workshops offered by organizations like these, but feel somewhat lost or unsure about the direction their career may be taking. These seminars can provide small business owners with expert advice concerning issues ranging from finding the right office space to developing a strategic marketing plan. Even though the majority of these experts are not employed by large law firms, they are well qualified to give sound business plans and guidance to small businesses.
The third entity that is an important part of the small business community is a business network or networking association. There are numerous local chambers of commerce and business associations in most cities and towns throughout the United States. While small business owners may not be able to attend most of these meetings, they certainly can be instrumental in helping to sponsor or coordinate local events. For example, chamber of commerce events often have informational tables set up for small business owners to visit and gain information and meet other local business people. Likewise, in chapters often sponsor events for small business owners to network and discuss important issues affecting their industry.
For many small business owners, eWOMennetwork provides a valuable resource for making contacts, conducting training, and connecting with local customers and suppliers. eWOMennetwork also conducts many Internet training sessions for its members. eWOMennetwork’s Internet training courses can be downloaded and attended on your own time. eWOMennetwork is also a valuable resource for networking events such as bNI meetings. The various networks available via eWOMennetwork provide an environment where local business owners can get knowledge about emerging trends and marketing strategies from well-known industry leaders.
It’s clear that the world of small business associations and their associated networking has grown in importance in recent years. This makes it easier than ever before for budding entrepreneurs to get the help they need and to get advice about how to grow their businesses. Additionally, these best small business associations are vital for connecting small business owners to each other when they do run into difficulties or need advice on specific issues. For example, many of the best small business associations offer free one-on-one counseling. By connecting a business owner to another business owner who may have questions that are specific to his or her field of endeavor, a business owner can learn more about how others think about a problem and how they can best resolve it. While many small business organizations offer similar benefits, many offer much more.