When you start a small business, it can sometimes feel like you are in it alone. There are so many things to think of and do before you even open for business that your to-do list may seem insurmountable. However, when opening your business, the last thing you should feel is alone. There are many resources available for you that will help you create and grow your business into the business of your dreams.
One of the best resources available for small business owners is the U.S. Small Business Administration, or SBA for short. The SBA was created by the federal government in 1953 with a mission to “aid, counsel, assist and protect the interests of small business concerns, to preserve free competitive enterprise and to maintain and strengthen the overall economy of our nation.” Today, the mission remains to bring resources to small business owners throughout the United States and its territories.
What can the SBA do for you and your small business? The better question may be what can’t the SBA do to help you with your business. The most important resources and services that the SBA provides to all small business owners who seek their help include:
• Financial Assistance: The SBA is known for its willingness to assist small business owners financially. The organization is a great place to find financial backing and loans for your business. The SBA offers SBA-backed loans to businesses that qualify. They can also help recommend the proper types of loans you can get for your small business. The SBA can also help with grant-funding, including helping you find the types of grants your business qualifies for along with assisting in the application process.
• Federal Government Contracts: The SBA can also help small businesses with the ins and outs of earning a government contract for their business. This means that the SBA will walk you step-by-step through the process of submitting your business’s big to work with the federal government on different types of projects. These types of business contracts are highly sought by businesses. With the help of the SBA, you can be that much more prepared and qualified to earn a government contract for your business.
• Counseling and Assistance: The SBA provides training and counseling to small business owners throughout the United States via its district offices or through another SBA-backed entity like SCORE, Small Business Development Centers and Women Business Centers. The SBA website at SBA.gov is another great resource with free online courses on a number of business topics important to small business owners.
• Disaster Assistance: The SBA provides low interest loans to business and individuals that have been affected by natural disasters. These loans can be used to rebuild real estate and property.
• Compliance Assistance: The SBA can also provide businesses with information that will allow them to become compliant with federal laws and regulations. Because the SBA is a part of the federal government, they know the lay of the law and can provide all of the information necessary to remain in compliance with the laws.
By utilizing the services and resources of the Small Business Administration, you can ensure that your business will grow and continue to flourish as time goes on.