You've got the financial statements, a business plan and a whole lot of passion. Why isn't it enough to get a loan?
If you threw all the factors into a pot as ingredients, you'd have a Jambalaya. Check your recipe for things on this list:
- Not enough business history
- Bad or unsteady credit
- Lack of access to lenders funding small businesses
- Unclear business model
- Too many competitors trying to do the same thing
- Simple bad luck
Michigan's District Director of U.S. Small Business Administration Gerald Moore might add a geographic disadvantage, lack of education or being a member of an underserved community to this list. In talking to struggling business owners in the greater Detroit area, he found plenty of struggling entrepreneurs. And knowing that over 1.7 million workers in Michigan are employed by small businesses, he started a program called "Getting to Yes."
Whereas being accepted for a loan garners many "no's," being accepted into this small business education program only requires two years of business operation and a commitment to the 8-week program. Participants have the opportunity to pitch their business plan in front of a panel of lenders, gain access to a wide variety of traditional and alternative lenders, and receive plenty of entrepreneurial tips and mentoring along the way.
For many, small business forums and programs are of tremendous value. In recognition of Small Business Week this coming May 4-8, a Chamber of Commerce in Gwinnett County, GA, is hosting "Small Business Essentials: The Experts Speak," offering help with business and marketing plans, financial and lending assistance, networking opportunities and training and mentorship programs to local entrepreneurs.
Find Resources to Help Your Business
Traditional loans and alternative financing options are available and continue to help flourish the small businesses that are essential to the U.S. economy. If you're struggling to get necessary paperwork in order, want to improve your networking abilities in your area, or you're looking for experts to offer tips on marketing practices check in with your local Chamber of Commerce or find SBA programs that can offer great advice. Search for online lenders who offer access to capital with flexible repayment schedules and compare the products and services.
While capital is essential to every small business, perseverance and resourcefulness are two necessary qualities of a successful entrepreneur!
Have you had success with a local small business program or seminar?