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Designed by Babson College, the nation’s top-ranked entrepreneurship school, the curriculum focuses on practical skills that participants can immediately put into action within their company. Over the course of the program, small-business owners will gain the skills needed to recognize new opportunities, embrace practices that increase business growth and ultimately develop a customized growth plan for their business.
The curriculum is organized into nine modules, each of which includes classroom discussion, peer learning exercises, skill building and experiential applications. Classroom activities are complemented by an integrated portfolio of business services, including one-on-one business advice, legal and financial clinics, and networking opportunities.
Module 1: You and Your BusinessModule 2: Growth and OpportunitiesModule 3: Money and MetricsModule 4: You Are the LeaderModule 5: It's the PeopleModule 6: Marketing and SellingModule 7: Strategic Growth Through OperationsModule 8: Being BankableModule 9: Action for Growth
Identify growth goals for the business The opening module will introduce small business owners to the program and the growth plan they will be working toward. After meeting the faculty, business service providers and fellow small business owners, participants will immediately begin working with their peers and will participate in exercises that stretch their visions for growth. We’ll discuss the predictable and unpredictable problems associated with growing a business and help participants identify which specific metrics are best for measuring their business’ success.
Clinic: Financial Statements
This hands-on session is designed to help participants become more comfortable with the three basic financial statements and help them understand and interpret key numbers. In preparation for module three, participants will have the opportunity to conduct a financial analysis.
Clinic: You Are the Lender
Participants will take a step into the lender’s shoes to evaluate small business loan applications. We will show participants the red flags that lenders look for and help them prepare the necessary numbers and documents for a loan application. The clinic will also include a panel session with local lenders to answer specific small business questions.
Knowing when to stand your ground and when to budge can make a good deal great. In this clinic, participants will learn the dynamics of negotiation and develop effective strategies to create value though collaboration.
Local attorneys will discuss the basics of employment law and advise small business owners on how to protect themselves during the hiring and firing process. Participants will also have the opportunity to sit down one-on-one with an attorney to address their current legal questions.