Invest in Yourself: Make Time for Education

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”  Nelson Mandela

Education can change the world, as Nelson Mandela has shown. It can also have an impact on you and your business.

Today we live in an extremely competitive world that is constantly changing.  Consumers are highly educated.  Before making a purchase, they research products and pricing. As an entrepreneur, you need to keep pace with technology, innovation and new trends.

Education is now a necessity.  There are many different types of educational opportunities, depending on your needs, your budget and the time you have available.. While it is not always easy finding the time to take a course or seminar, it is imperative that you plan ahead and make time.

The Halton Region Small Business Centre knows the importance of education.  In 2012 we are offering a new four-part series entitled “Steps to Success,” designed for new business owners. The series covers four key business topics:

  • Market Research – Identifies the why and how of conducting market research for your business.
  • Business Plan Basics – Introduces the concepts of a business plan from the executive summary to the financial overview.  Provides examples of templates that can be used for your business.
  • Understanding Financial Statements – Demonstrates how to record and maintain financial records including balance sheets, cash flow and income statements.
  • ABCs of Marketing – Explains some cost effective marketing options for your small business.

We will also continue to offer our “Starting a Small Business” sessions which are designed for start-up entrepreneurs and small business owners.  These sessions cover business structure, registration, regulations, licenses, tax and financing.

The Small Business Centre will also offer seminars designed for existing small business owners under the “Growing Your Business” section.  Topics covered will be:

  • New Media Marketing Tools – Explains new tools to help you reach a wider audience, build brand awareness, improve customer service and understand your customers better.
  • Media Relations and Opportunities – Shares tips about working with the media – writing a news release, preparing for a media interview and building a relationship with the media.
  • Applications and Recoveries of the GST/HST – Explains when to register, recovery strategies, restricted input tax credits and common audit exposures.
  • How to Do Business with the Government – Teaches how to write an effective proposal as well as how to market your goods and services to the government.
  • Planning Your Exit Strategy – Are you planning to retire or move to another business venture? Deciding how you will exit is an important decision.
  • First Steps in Exporting – Highlights resources, programs and services including market research, export planning and practical issues.
  • The New Importer – Canada Border Services Agency will deliver this seminar outlining the importing process, how duty is determined, government contacts and trade programs.

Let us help you make education a priority in 2012.  It will not only enhance your business but it will help you to feel more confident.   Education empowers!

The Halton Region Small Business Centre is here to help.  Check out our schedule of upcoming seminars.  For more information about any of Halton Region’s Small Business Centre resources and services, and how we can help direct you to the right resources, contact us at 1-866-4HALTON (42-5866), www.haltonsmallbusiness.ca, smallbusinesss@halton.ca or visit us at 1151 Bronte Road, Oakville. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @haltonecdev and Facebook at www.facebook.com/HaltonSBEC.

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