I am looking to share ideas and ways that you have collaborated with local organizations that provide small business support. For example, the local Small Business Development Center, the Small Business Administration etc.
I would love to come up with some creative ways to collaborate with these organizations.
One idea I had is to turn one of our offices into a Business Resource Center. I am in the process of doing this and would love to hear from anyone who has done something similar.
My vision for this is an office that has various materials from the many different organizations that support small businesses. It will also be available as a shared office for reps from these orgs to come use to offer advising, meetings etc.
SCORE, for example, offers free advising and the chapter in my city does not have adequate office space so they are excited to participate. It will get people from these organizations out into the community in a new way, of course my members will benefit from having this resource available right in our space and any traffic that comes in to meet with these reps could be potential members.
I don’t have all the details figured out quite yet and I haven’t figured out how to make it pencil out beyond the added value to our members and the traffic of potential new members. Maybe that’s enough but it would be nice to have the cost of the office covered so I’m thinking I’ll do this as a trial and see if enough people see the value in it to pitch in toward the price of the office.
I’d love to brainstorm and hear your ideas or what you have done in your space.