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Washington County Community College’s Workforce and Professional Development Division and MaineStreet Business Building (a program of Sunrise County Economic Council) are linking arms with partners, once again, to bring you…

 

 

Partners in Entrepreneurial Pathways

2.0 – Beyond the Business Plan

 

begins March 23rd!

 

This program is an accredited 11-week virtual asynchronous start-up accelerator course focusing on the practical application of business acumen and providing insight into what makes our markets and ecosystem tick. The sessions are led by a variety of guest lecturers who are subject matter experts in their fields. Completion of the entire series and a final portfolio project results in 3 college credits and Entrepreneurship Digital Badges – and is available to you for FREE!

Each individual session, across Pathways programs, is open to current or aspiring entrepreneurs, also at no cost.  Individuals can choose any one session, or multiple sessions, to attend. This creates a rich learning environment—joining students with the local community.

 

Scroll through to check out the program flyer and weekly workshop lineup and register today!

 

Select the learning experience that is right for you!

Option 1 and Option 2 are listed below.


Option 1


EARN 3 COLLEGE CREDITS FOR FREE

Completion of the 11-week course, homework assignments, and a final project assignment result in 3 college credits! 

 

Registration for college credit will require the submission of 2 secure online forms. The required forms should take approximately 2 minutes each to complete and once they are submitted, we will get to work setting you up in the course, add you to calendar invites, and ensure that you receive the course syllabus and materials.

 

BOTH of the following forms are required in order to
enroll in Option 1 (college credit):

Form #1

Click here to complete WCCC’s College Course Enrollment Form to gain access to the college’s online learning portal.


Form #2

Click here to complete MaineStreet Business Building’s Program Enrollment Form to gain access to weekly program information and updates.

 


Upon completion of the 11-week course,
learners receiving college credit will be able to…
  • Demonstrate an understanding of what branding a business entails and utilize that information to develop a consistent brand for their business venture.
  • Examine graphic design and website develop tools, strategies, and best practices and demonstrate learning through crafting graphics and narrative website content.
  • Effectively identify, and create an action plan around, avenues to stay attuned to their target market(s).
  • Demonstrate an understanding business certifications and listings and utilize that information to develop a market visibility action plan.
  • Determine what marketing channels may be utilized to best position their products/services in an online environment.
  • Identify what steps must be taken to keep their business ventures secure in an online environment.
  • Examine online sales (e-commerce) best practices and payment methods and utilize learning to identify methods that will best showcase their business, products, and services.
  • Effectively summarize how relationship-building is relevant to them and the impact it can have on their business.
  • Identify steps to achieve operational excellence and sustainability.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of key measurements to business financial health.
  • Identify significant risks businesses face, or may face, throughout their business’ life cycle and apply that understanding to their own business ideas/ventures.
  • Explain employment pro and cons that they must consider in the position of becoming an employer.
  • Examine the projected life cycles of their business ventures and utilize that understanding to draft a phased plan to transition or exit.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between the economy and business and utilize that knowledge to identify challenges and opportunities this will present for their businesses.

 


Option 2


SELECT UP TO 18 WORKSHOPS

Each individual session, across this program, is open to ALL, also at no cost.  Individuals can choose any one session, or multiple sessions, to attend. This creates a rich learning environment—joining students with the local community.

 

To register for workshops you wish to attend, click here complete MaineStreet Business Building’s

Program Enrollment Form

 


 

Program Flyer:

 

 

 


All workshops will be facilitated by Katie Bragg, Entrepreneurship Program & MaineStreet Business Building Manager:

 

MaineStreet Business Building Logo

 

Questions?
please contact Katie

kbragg@sunrisecounty.org or (207) 259-0053

 


 

Weekly Workshops

 

WEEK 01

 

Building Your Brand

What is your business’ personality? A strong brand is critical to the success of any business or organization. Learn about the importance of a strong brand, how to build your brand “voice”, and have a strong visual identity.

 


WEEK 02

 

Graphic Design Basics for Business

Learn how to create stunning visual content for any of your online platforms. FREE tools and resources will be provided that will have you making beautiful graphics for your business in a snap!

 


WEEK 03

 

Business Website Basics

Are you interested in creating a website for your business? Want to freshen up the look of your existing website? Let’s discuss the steps of creating your business website and take a closer look at what type of content will get your business noticed.

 


WEEK 04 part 1

 

Knowing Your Market: Digging Deeper

Who are your customers? What do they seek? How do you get your message and product in front of them? This session outlines demographics, research, and marketing best practices to reach those who love Maine and its small businesses and unique products and services. Come learn what to watch, how to “listen”, and how you can take action!

 

WEEK 04part 2

 

Market Visibility

Let’s navigate a variety of business certifications, listings, and resources that can have a significant impact on your business and are positioned to promote your products/services at low, or no, cost to you or your customers.

 


WEEK 05 part 1

 

Marketing Your Business Online

Join us to learn why a strategic online presence is crucial for Maine businesses and how to drive more traffic to your physical and/or virtual storefronts.

 

WEEK 05part 2

 

Cyber Security: What Small Businesses Need to Know

As your business grows its overall presence online, it is important to know how to proactively combat breaches. Let’s explore Cyber Security basics and best practices that you can follow to keep your business operations secure.

 


WEEK 06

 

E-commerce Essentials

Is e-commerce right for your business? Let’s explore single- and omni-channel sales best practices, payment methods, and how to showcase and sell your products/services.

 


WEEK 07part 1

 

Taking Customer Experience to the Next Level

The customer experience begins before your first one on one interaction and long after the sale. Let’s explore practical ways to establish and improve the customer experience that can add zeros to your bottom line!

 

WEEK 07 part 2 

 

Building Relationships & Networking

Relationship- and community-building is at the core of business success and touches everything a business does–from operations management to morale to community perception. Let’s explore the benefits of building and strengthening relationships, observing and understanding others’ behaviors, communication approaches, and the importance of respecting and valuing one another’s strengths and weaknesses. This workshop will also focus on effective networking online and offline and define steps and skill builders that will prove helpful throughout building your own powerful network.

 


WEEK 08 part 1 

 

Efficiency in Business

Efficiency is achieving optimum performance from your resources. Increasing your business’ efficiency reduces costs, increases profits, and helps your business grow. This session will explore best practices in gaining business efficiency and sustainability.

WEEK 08 part 2

 

Tax Time: What You Need to Know to Plan Ahead

Tax planning does not have to be stressful. In this session, we will learn about practices, steps, and resources that startups should consider to ensure their records, and income taxes, are consistently accurate.

 


WEEK 09part 1 

 

Monitoring Your Business’ Financial Health – It’s Time for a Check-up!

Business owners need not be full-fledged finance experts to make their businesses successful and fiscally fit. This class will cover key measurements to consider as you examine your business’ financial health at startup, and beyond.

 

WEEK 09part 2  

 

Risk Management – The Impact of Business Decisions

Owning and operating a business involve varying degrees of uncertainty and, often, the biggest moves aren’t much more than calculated risks. Learn how to identify healthy, and unhealthy, levels of risk and their potential impact on your business’ longevity.

 


WEEK 10part 1

 

Becoming an Employer – To Hire, or to Contract?

When starting a new venture, it is likely that owners will decide help is needed as their businesses grow. Many small businesses start out hiring outside contractors but, at some point, may feel the pull to become an employer. This class will look at the advantages and disadvantages of each scenario and important factors to consider when making the next move.

Growing your work environment is a big step! During the second half of the workshop, we will explore workplace know-how that builds inclusiveness, high morale, and consistent employee and community experiences at the onset.

 

WEEK 10 part 2

 

Planning Your Transition – What’s Your End Game?

Whether born of a hobby, innovative idea, or burning desire to build a legacy, mapping out your life cycle within your business is an important piece of the strategic puzzle. Let’s uncover what going out on top looks like to you and steps you can take to achieve it.

 


WEEK 11 part 1

The Impact of Small Business on the Local Economy

Understanding the mutual nature of the relationship between economy and business is essential to making timely, and strategic, decisions. This session will provide insight into Washington County’s Economy and the important role small business owners and entrepreneurs play in its success.

 

 

WEEK 11part 2

 

Meet Your Resources! Panel

Maine business support partners will come together to discuss entrepreneurship and small business support resources and programs that are available to you, for FREE!

Resource Panelists include technical assistance providers, business advisors, community lenders, and mentors!

 


 

All workshops will be facilitated by Katie Bragg, Entrepreneurship Program & MaineStreet Business Building Manager:

 

MaineStreet Business Building Logo

 

Questions?
please contact Katie

kbragg@sunrisecounty.org or (207) 259-0053