Running a business is hard. Some days you are the president, accountant, sales, fulfillment, marketing, and janitor – all in the space of an hour. Wouldn’t it be nice if there were somewhere to go for help? Luckily, there is. The Idaho Small Business Development Center (Idaho SBDC) is there for you. Haven’t heard of them? That’s OK, we’re the best kept secret around.

The Idaho SBDC was established here in 1986 as part of a nation-wide program of SBDCs. Funded through the federal Small Business Administration, the State of Idaho and Boise State, the SBDC exists with the sole goal of helping small businesses be more successful.

Many people who have heard of the SBDC think that we only serve start-up businesses. While we do help entrepreneurs through the start-up process, that’s only about 40 percent of our client portfolio. The other 60 percent are well established with years in the business world. Beyond basic start-up inquiries, we are able to assist a small business owner through any stage of the business cycle, from learning how to talk to customers and refining their sales pitch to assessing online marketing efforts and strengthening those to bring in new customers. Perhaps a business has doubled their revenue but still doesn’t have any available cash; we can assist with the financials to pinpoint why. If a small business is ready to grow and needs to put together a packet to take to the bank or would like to hire new employees, the Idaho SBDC has staff and resources to assist.

The best part? Our consulting services are free. Let me repeat, our consulting services are free. Our mission is to provide no-cost and low-cost consulting and training assistance to small business owners. Since our funding comes from the government, we can give you impartial advice and mentoring. Plus, it’s completely confidential unless you choose to share.

“But aren’t you located in Boise?” you ask. Yes, we are, but we love to travel. However, with today’s technology, we don’t have to travel. (But who doesn’t want an excuse to visit the McCall area?) If traveling doesn’t work with your schedule, we have telephone, email and video conference consulting that’s so clear it’s like we’re in the same room.

Kim Sherman-Labrum of Idaho SBDC

We also offer a slate of training programs, most of which can travel to McCall, although some are offered virtually and accessible from the comfort of your pajamas. Some of our trainings have a small cost associated with them, but we work with a variety of sources to keep it as inexpensive as possible. If you email me, I may have access to scholarship funds on some of the classes that have a fee

The bottom line is that we want you to be successful and we are here to help in any way we can. If you want to know more about our services, you can check out our website.  Or you can call Shaunda at 208-426-3875 or email me at klabrum@boisestate.edu

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Kim Sherman-Labrum

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