Where can I obtain information or go for assistance?
For the aspiring business owner, there are numerous resources available that can help walk you through the entire process. Today, you can find a wealth of information online that will point you in the right direction. Other resources include libraries and government agencies such as the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). The SBA also funds local counseling, training and information services available through organizations such as the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE), Business Information Centers (BICs) and Small Business Development Centers (SBDC).
The following information is a partial list of resources for the aspiring business owner in Virginia:
Old Dominion University Center
1. Veterans Business Outreach Center
2. Women’s Business Center
3. Institution for Innovation & Entrepreneurship
Hampton Roads Small Business Development Center
Virginia Beach Department of Economic Development
Norfolk Department of Economic Development
Chesapeake Economic Development
What are the next steps once you have completed your research and business plan?
After you have gathered your research, put all the pieces together and completed your business plan, it is time to turn your dream into reality. The wise thing to do is to have someone review your business plan before you put it into action. It is very important to fine-tune your business plan so that there are no lingering issues. Once you have covered all the bases in your business plan, then it is time to move ahead! Depending on your circumstances, you may need to go to the bank, a government agency or a local development company for financial assistance. The best advice is to be prepared and do your homework ahead of time.