February 2008

Successfully Planning & Starting the One-Person Business – SRJC Short Course

“Have you been moved out of a career through layoffs or mergers? Longing to be your own boss and follow your dream? Times have changed, and one-person businesses are a permanent part of our new economy. Are you ready to become ‘your business’ and join this fast growing group of entrepreneurs? Let’s enjoy discussing:

  • Learning from others’ successes (books/tapes, workshops, Internet, etc.)
  • Doing your homework/research (markets/competition)
  • Self-assessment (skills, expertise, business idea)
  • Lifestyle changes (working alone, no paycheck, family support, freedom)
  • Legal form of business, licenses, zoning, ID, taxes, write-offs, contracts, etc.
  • Business plan, seed money, working capital, budgets
  • Market research, and target markets
  • Sales/Marketing, cards, Web pages, brochures, networking
  • Setting up shop (supplies, equipment, accounting, etc.)
  • Seven reasons businesses could fail
  • Personal/Professional well-being (support, inspiration, continued learning, time out)”

Presented by Danni Burton and co-sponsored by the Redwood Empire Small Business Development Center.

February 10, 2008 • 9:30am – 4:30pm
SRJC, 2701 Maggini Hall, Santa Rosa Campus

Information and registration

Impact Marin Conference

Hosted by the North Bay Business Journal, the Impact Marin conference will explore the top issues shaping the future of business in Marin County. Brian Sobel will give an election year overview taking a look at potential outcomes and their impact on local issues. Brad Bollinger will moderate a panel discussion with industry leaders discussing the state of health care, transportation, and public issues in Marin.

February 13, 2008 • 8:00 – 10:30am
Embassy Suites Hotel, 101 McInnis Parkway, San Rafael

Information & reservations

Looking for Capital?

Raising Venture Capital for the Serious Entrepreneur by Berkery

“Written by Dermot Berkery, an internationally known venture capitalist with Delta Partners, this complete toolbook thoroughly details how venture capitalists arrange the financing for a company; what they look for in a business plan; how they value a business; and how they structure the terms of an agreement. Within its pages, you’ll find everything you need to successfully raise new business capital with the most attractive terms possible.Using informative case studies, detailed charts, and term sheet exercises, Raising Venture Capital for the Serious Entrepreneur [McGraw Hill, 2008] discusses the basic principles of the venture capital method, strategies for raising capital, methods of valuing the early-stage venture, and proven techniques for negotiating the deal.”

The Library has more resources to help you finance your business.

Know Your Market – Online Demographic Resources

Whether you are working on a business plan, a proposal to attract venture capital, or a marketing plan, it pays to know who your potential customers are: breakouts by age, gender, income, family group, etc., will always help you to make more effective plans. Here are a few good online resources for demographic data:

The Sonoma County Economic Development Board has taken the lead in providing statistical information, both demographic and economic, tailored to Sonoma County. Their Statistics & Reports section includes an annual county economic and demographic profile, quarterly reports on business confidence and a business barometer, industry sector reports, and many special reports such as best environmental practices and a label market review.

City-data.com is an extensive site offering profiles of U.S. cities. In addition to the usual demographic information, you can find information such as the number of building permits issued and average building cost, most common industries/occupations for men and for women, average wind speed, tv and radio stations, and so much more.

The U.S. Census Department databases are a goldmine of data and American Factfinder makes it easier to find what you need.

The Statistical Abstract of the United States, published since 1878, is the authoritative and comprehensive summary of statistics on the social, political, and economic organization of the United States.

Statemaster.com claims to compare the 50 states in 3,000 categories. Topic areas include health, labor, lifestyle, trade (Texas leads in the overall value of exports, California is second, but we have the highest GSP!), crime, education, energy, transportation, etc. There is also an overview, maps, and a picture of the state flag for each state. Here’s a great opportunity for a denture maker: West Virginia has the highest percentage of people who have lost their natural teeth (42.8%).

The California Statistical Abstract is a compilation of data on social, economic, and physical aspects of the State.

California Department of Finance: Demographic, Economic, and Financial Research, gathered from many resources and available in various formats.

16th Annual Russian River Valley Business Expo

In keeping with tradition, the Windsor Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center will be presenting their 16th annual Business and Community Expo. Called the “Best Expo in Sonoma County,” the event is free to the public and will showcase seventy-five of Sonoma County’s businesses which includes diversity in retail, professional, hospitality, lodging, construction, manufacturing, recreation, culinary, health and dental care, and the wine industry.

February 12, 2008 • 4:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Mary Agatha Furth Center, 8400 Old Redwood Highway, Windsor

For more information or call 707-838-7285.

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