Despite the economy, entrepreneurs are not only surviving but thriving. In fact, some of America’s most successful corporations started during economic downturns. The key to success is to get help early and regularly. That was how Morgan Smith and Youngsong Martin’s achieved their dreams.
They are the face of small business and this is their story.
Morgan Smith launched Boneheads Restaurant in California and has since spread nationwide. The restaurant repeatedly appears on “best of” lists for its unique and creative approach to food. Advising other entrepreneurs, he mentions “Most small business owners excel at a particular craft. They really need to engage SCORE counselors to help them offset their weaknesses.” Smith credits much of his success to his SCORE mentor Tom Patty of Orange County SCORE.
Another successful entrepreneur, Youngsong Martin, founded Wildflower Linens. Her business has grown tremendously over the past few years. In 2009, she was asked by the White House to provide and style linens for the first ladies of the United States and Russia. She advises, “If you need help, there are people right there [at SCORE], with amazing knowledge. And free! I am here because of her, because of my SCORE counselor. I can actually cry thinking about that.” The mentor Martin mentions is retired IBM business manager, Terri Carr who is also a member of Orange County SCORE. As a former sales and marketing professional, Carr helped Young refine her business goals and reviewed her marketing program. She then tapped mentor, Jim Anderson, who used his extensive background in finance and management to review Wildflower Linen’s accounting and financial practices. He also helped with issues such as expense tracking, inventory control, taxes and planning/budgeting.
What’s your story? How has having a mentor helped you overcome the odds? Share your success below.
On the 27th, President Obama signed the 40 billion plus bill to assist small businesses with easier credit and other incentives to expand and hire new employees.
A 30 billion dollar federal fund is established to assist smaller banks in providing loans to small business and for cutting 12 billion dollars in taxes over the coming decade. Do NOT confuse the tax cut, with the expiring tax cuts for all Americans at the end of the year, that is still not resolved.
In part the bill provides more unemployment checks for the jobless, relief from payroll taxes for companies that hire new employees and billions of dollars in aid for states and local schools.
The new loan fund would be available to community banks to enable funding to eligible small businesses. Supporters of the bill suggest this could provide up to 300 billion dollars in new loans.
The legislation would also assist SBA lenders and their borrowers by lowering program fees and and raising loan guarantees and lending limits.
Most of the tax relief is would go to larger businesses for write offs of facilities and equipment such as computers, trucks and machinery.
One important tax issue for small business is the availability of writing off costs of health insurance for owners and their families from self employment tax, but only for 2010.
It will be interesting to see how community banks respond to this initiative and I would be interested to hear of any loans being provided to our blog readers.
Have a great day!