Sunday, November 22, 2009
The Greater Princeton Area SCORE Chapter is expanding its capacity to provide free and confidential advice and counseling to small business owners and people seeking to start a new business. A newly-formed partnership between SCORE and the Middlesex County Regional Chamber of Commerce (MCRCC) is aimed at improving economic development throughout Middlesex County by fostering and sustaining the growth of small businesses in the Middlesex County area. SCORE and the MCRCC will collaborate on seminar and counseling programs designed for the benefit of MCRCC member businesses as well as other businesses throughout Middlesex County. The partnership will result in additional locations for SCORE to conduct its free seminars and counseling sessions.
SCORE currently provides counseling at a number of locations in Mercer and Middlesex counties, including Princeton, New Brunswick, South Brunswick, Hamilton, and East Brunswick. In announcing the partnership with MCRCC, Bill Litchman, SCORE Greater Princeton Chapter Chair & President, observed: “the Princeton Chapter has traditionally been responsible for providing business counseling services to all Middlesex and Mercer County businesses and entrepreneurs. Over the past 15 years we have been recognized as the premier business counseling service to many of these clients. This latest action is part of our continuing effort to expand our services and we are pleased to be able to assist more clients throughout Middlesex County.”
MCRCC Executive Board Chair John Fitzgerald of Magyar Bank is optimistic about the benefits of this new partnership, stating, “The Chamber’s partnership with SCORE will benefit the business community by providing entrepreneurs and small businesses access to knowledgeable and experienced business professionals willing to share their experiences and provide valuable insight in starting or growing a business. We’re pleased to partner with an organization like SCORE that shares the Chamber’s mission of supporting local businesses which play such a vital role in our region’s economy.”
ABOUT SCORE: Greater Princeton Area SCORE, a non-profit, volunteer resource partner of the U.S. Small Business Administration, has more than forty small business owners and executives who volunteer their time and expertise to help others start a new business or help improve the profitability of existing ones. The chapter was named New Jersey’s “SCORE Chapter of the Year” for three consecutive years (2005-2008). SCORE currently counsels both emerging and existing businesses, with 20% of its clients falling into the existing business category.
ABOUT THE MIDDLESEX COUNTY REGIONAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE: The MCRCC was established in 1910 to serve as the voice of the business community in Central New Jersey. Today, they represent over 700 member organizations, representing over 50,000 employees. Their mission is to provide opportunities for business growth and prosperity, offer quality service to its members, and serve as a resource leader for businesses and the community.
To set up an appointment for free counseling sessions, call 609-393-0505. For additional information about SCORE and its free seminars, workshops, events, and tutorials, visit www.scoreprinceton.org.
Monday, October 12, 2009
The Greater Princeton Area SCORE Chapter is expanding its capacity to provide free and confidential advice and counseling to small business owners and people seeking to start a new business.
Starting November 10 and continuing every two weeks, SCORE will be conducting small business counseling sessions at
SCORE currently provides counseling at a number of locations in Mercer and Middlesex counties, including
Litchman added, "We very much appreciate DeRosa’s offer to donate the space and resources to allow us to expand our services. Over the past few years we've doubled our counseling capacity to meet the growing demands of the small business community during these difficult times. We feel that there is a strong need for our services in the
ABOUT SCORE: Greater Princeton Area SCORE, a non-profit, volunteer resource partner of the U.S. Small Business Administration, has more than forty small business owners and executives who volunteer their time and expertise to help others start a new business or help improve the profitability of existing ones.
ABOUT THE DEROSA GROUP: The DeRosa Group, founded in 2006, is a developer of commercial and residential property with a mission to revitalize urban areas and transform existing buildings into their highest and best use to suit the needs of the community. Their purpose is not only to revitalize urban
Sunday, May 3, 2009
I had the recent opportunity to see a “fine-tuned” example of this at the Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership’s (IFEL) 2nd Annual Business Plan Competition and Mini-Conference in Newark, NJ. As noted from its web-site, IFEL is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that supports inner-city economic development through entrepreneurship. It helps ambitious entrepreneurs leverage the resources necessary to create sustainable and profitable for-profit, non-profit and social ventures. In so doing, IFEL seeks to create jobs and wealth in the communities that it serves. IFEL has a special outreach effort targeting women and minority entrepreneurs and inner-city based business owners.
IFEL is run by a dynamic co-founder and Chief Operating Officer, Jill Johnson, who has not only a passion for the cause of her organization but, in my estimation, is also clearly involved in the “destiny business”. Sonny Corleone in “The God Father” often made mention that “it’s not personal, it’s business”. And yet, when it comes to the subject of building organizations, early stage to large companies, there is simply no way I know of to hold the interests of others in trust, their destinies, if you don’t get personal. Let me be clear, this is not to say that this should diminish the capacity for hard and necessary decisions, rather it means that a focus on creating enterprise value propositions is both personal and business oriented.
To understand how Jill and all those who support and are supported by IFEL get this idea, please visit the IFEL website at http://www.ifelnj.org/; better yet, let Jill know you can help the cause she supports, or ask how IFEL can help you. And, congratulations to all of the finalists of the 2nd Annual IFEL Business Plan Competition, specifically to Joelle Hinds-Ware, Managing Partner of Verify-Ed, 2009 competition winner, http://www.verify-ed.com/.
Jill and IFEL clearly know how to “promise the dawn.”
Monday, April 20, 2009
Deming in my belief was also right when, in one of his 12 points, he stated that organizations need to “drive out fear.” Organizational fear can manifest itself in the most fundamental sense – concern for sustainability – of employment or the business itself. It can also be seen as doubt, doubt that the value proposition I mentioned earlier is important, or doubt that it exists at all. It is a doubt that drives anyone or any part of an enterprise to question their value and place in the grander scheme of things.
What I hold as important, and what I strive to do, is to foster environments where all organizational interests are held in trust and are linked to a common goal of mutual benefit. I believe this is only done by the creation of a vision and mission, supported by strategy and tactics, that “command assent” in their singular clarity. And what would this assent, and the execution behind it lead to – simply, but powerfully – innovation, the acceleration of business growth and sustained profitability, a conscience and bias to community and social well-being, and a workplace populated with hearts and minds whose spirits are not constrained by work, but rather, are empowered and nurtured from it.
The author Herbert Lieberman concludes a novel with the notion, in my paraphrase, that we are all very much like our ancestors, huddled together around a fire, braced against the cold and dark, waiting for a dawn that scarcely promises to come. In organizational terms, fulfilling the promise of this dawn’s coming is realized when capacity and capabilities are aligned to the purpose of benefit for all participants in the enterprise.
May we each in our own way, roles or responsibilities contribute to the light of that dawn.
Thursday, February 19, 2009
The subject of my blog is Capacity and Capabilities. My writings will be on the confluence of both as it relates to building and growing an enterprise – my particular area of interest is in doing so for start-up and small businesses.
Some time ago before I embarked on working on this, from the consultative perspective, (that’s not a paid announcement, is it?), I had the opportunity to see capacity and capabilities form as an outcome of the expression of character, competence and execution.
Two years ago a group of folks from different organizations, different cultures with different goals, but the same fears, came together to undertake a massive technology- focused undertaking. And, what about those fears; the same for most, in many organizations – security, the unknown, turf, well being, and the ability to make a difference – you get the picture. These are pronounced when added to the blend of “on-shore and off-shore’ work and team building – a subject that I will speak directly to in future posts. Any casual Google search of the subject matter usually begins and ends with one word – Disaster!!.
Well, farther from the truth for these folks. They overcame their fears, found a common vision that Einstein would have been proud of – no hallucination, just execution. At the same time, they also found a common language, a common set of goals and a common means to achieve them. They stand as a resounding affirmation of what happens when spirits are not constrained by work, but rather are expanded by it; by what happens when a belief in what can be overcomes the doubt of what could have been; by what happens when the flashlight of professional hope illuminates and dispels those organizational worries of what “goes bump in the night”
And so, with all due apologies to T.H. White, as this group celebrates the one year anniversary of their great achievement – don’t let it be forgot that once there was a spot where common destinies and multiple futures were lingua franca.
I never will.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
I look forward to sharing my thoughts with you on building capacity and capabilities for start-up, small and mid-size businesses. My focus will be on doing this through the practical, enterprise application of creatively leading human capital, project management and technology disciplines.
The subject matter at hand is one that requires a keen interest in "holding professional interests in trust".
I hope that will come through in our discussions. I look forward to a stimulating exchange of ideas.