SCORE Select - Attend Low-Cost Workshops and Free Seminars for Useful, Practical Small Business Information on a Variety of Important Business Topics

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2015 Season
Our free or low cost workshops and seminars provide useful, practical small business information on a variety of topics important to your business. We have a great many workshops and the schedule is always being updated so come back to our website for details.
Topics include the following and many others:
Business planning
eCommerce and Social Media
Financing a new business
Are you ready to be an entrepreneur
Becoming an Independent Consultant
Selling Skills
Buy/Sell a business

Click to Download Summary Schedule

Simple Steps for Starting Your Business (New Cycle)
Ferguson Library    96 Broad Street Stamford, CT 06901
Workshop times -6:00 pm - 8:30pm

If you have any questions please contact SCORE Fairfield County at 203-831-0065 or by email at:
Want to start a business but do not know where to start? This workshop series, conducted by a team of professionals from the SCORE Norwalk Chapter, will give you the boost to get you on your way!
Monday, March 23 - Self-Assessment/Business Plan
Monday, March 30 - Marketing Strategy & Research
Monday, April 6 - Marketing Execution
Monday, April 13 - Financial Reporting & Planning
Monday, April 20 - Funding Sources/Conversation with Entrepreneurs

Seating is limited. Registration is required.

Participants will receive a Certificate of Completion at the end of the program.
Technology Trends that are Changing Small Business
Westport Library 20 Jesup Road, Westport, CT 06880
Tuesday, March 31, 2015          6:00pm to 7:30pm
Check In starts at 5:30pm

Technology doesn't stand still . . . And neither do the people or the businesses that use it. The computer has revolutionized how and where we work. Whether you have a "bricks and mortar" storefront, or you're a "road warrior" with mobile devices, the question will ALWAYS be, "What's next?"
• Change - How far should your business go and when
• Mobility - Technology doesn't stand still so where should you be
• Connectivity to Customers - What's replacing TV, radio and print -   maybe
• Document Availability - Online, but what are the pitfalls
• Security - Current events have given this topic a (justifiably) high level of concern
• Analytics - What's available for your business
How Financial Statements Help Run the Business Now and Plan for the Future
Darien Library 1441 Post Road, Darien, CT 06820
Tuesday, April 7, 2015
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
Knowing how financial statements work can help you run your business better
now and help you estimate the financial value of your growth strategy. You will learn:
• The purposes and uses of the 3 major financial statements: the P&L, the
Balance Sheet, and the Cash Flow Statement
• How the financial statements work together to help you better understand your business
• Some key financial ratios which illuminate your customers strengths and
• How to build use financial statements to estimate the financial value of your
growth strategy.
Making WordPress Work
Westport Library – 20 Jesup Road, Westport, CT 06880
Tuesday, April 14, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm - Check In at 5:30pm
Part of SCORE's internet marketing workshop series, this program will show small business owners how to create a web presence using WordPress, a powerful website development platform that is ideally suited for many small business owners. You will learn about:
• How to set up a WordPress website in minutes.
• Standard and customized WordPress themes
• How WordPress can host your site for free
• How to download and install WordPress on your own hosting account
• Shopping for and customizing themes
• Useful plug-ins and widgets
• Setting up users and assigning access levels and taking WordPress to the next level
Finding Funding For Your Small Business
Stamford Government Center - Safety Training Room – 6th Floor.          88 Washington Blvd.             Parking on Premises.   
Thursday, April 16, 2015       5:30pm Registration/Networking/Light Dinner
6:00pm -7:30pm Workshop
Whether you are starting a small business or expanding your
existing business, you might feel confused or overwhelmed
about how you are going to finance your business. There might be more financing resources available to you than you think.

You’ll also have an opportunity to meet with Fairfield County
SCORE representatives, SBA Lending Specialists and Stamford
Federal Credit Union representatives to discuss your business

The seminar is open to SFCU members and to the public
Dealing with Deadbeats: Getting the Money You Are Owed,   Fast and Legally
Norwalk Public Library       1 Belden Avenue, Norwalk, CT 06850
Thursday, April 16, 2015            
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
Sooner or later, it happens...and few things "eat at your insides" worse than when a client stops paying you. There are ways to avoid bad debts from the beginning. Ensuring contracts are in place to keep payments timely is just one way to ease the pain. But when debts arise and it falls upon you to collect, you need to be well-armed. Find out the four steps of collecting an overdue debt and what you can and can't do. Lastly, learn when you need to cut your losses and throw in the towel on a bad debt.
In this fast-paced program, Cliff Ennico will teach you winning to make sure you are paid on time, every time, and for keeping bad debts at an absolute minimum.   Specific topics will include:
• the four types of creditor, and which ones always get paid when a client or customer is “stretched” financially;
• avoiding bad debts in the first place, keeping them to a minimum, and keeping them small;
• the four steps in collecting an overdue debt;
• negotiating “workouts” with your debtors;
• surviving small claims court;
• “going medieval” and (legally) making a bad customer’s life miserable;
• things you can’t do when collecting overdue debts;
• the pros and cons of using collection agencies.
Process to Secure a Bank Loan
Westport Library – 20 Jesup Road, Westport, CT 06880
Tuesday April 21, 2015
12:00 noon – 1:30 pm | check-in starts at 11:30 am
This workshop will cover what banks look for in a loan application and the process for applying and securing a loan.
• The criteria for a successful loan application
• What information should an applicant provide for the lender to consider
• The application review process
• Strategies for seeking a loan
How to Sell More? – STOP Selling!
Darien Library       1441 Post Road, Darien, CT 06820
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
If your 2015 goal is to grow your company, you've got to do something different this year. You know all the selling techniques but it’s not working. Learn how NOT to sell but gain clients and business.   In this session, you will learn:
• How to attract more new customers
• The latest inbound marketing techniques
• Why traditional marketing no longer works
• How to grow your company in any economy
• To identify the ideal customer
• Proven strategies for growth
• How to make more money avoiding the traditional sales approach
• How to position your company in your industry
Making Content Marketing Work
Greenwich Library    101 W. Putnam Avenue, Greenwich, CT 06830
Wedneday, April 22, 2015             6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
The technique of Content Marketing has emerged out of the transition from traditional media to the digital marketing world.

More than just creating content on the internet to promote a product or service, businesses are discovering there is value in the content itself. There are tremendous marketing opportunities available in creating and distributing relevant, valuable content pertaining to your market.

This content can go out via a website, in email marketing, online articles and documents, downloadable white papers, posts and articles on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest and video channels like YouTube, as well as games, pictures, music, sounds and software). Marketing valuable content incorporates the two key ingredients to successful social marketing - authenticity and service. Content marketing build relationships, creates rich social media presences, enhances search engine results, builds brand recognition and drives traffic and leads.
Are You Using Social Media to Best Advantage?
Rowayton Library          33 Highland Avenue, Norwalk, CT 06853
Thursday, April 23, 2015       7:30p.m. to 8:30p.m.    Check In at 7:00p.m.
This workshop will answer all those questions about why social media is important, where you need to have a presence and why, and provide specific tips to save you time and money - but still get maximum results.
• Which major social media sites should be used to reach your ideal customer
• Finding the balance between social engagement and social selling
• How to manage time and resources for an effective social media strategy
• How to publish content that your customer craves and create fierce loyalty
Leadership Development
Ferguson Library             96 Broad Street    Stamford, CT 06901
Monday, May 4, 2015    6:00pm to 8:00pm  Check in at 5:30pm
EVENT postponed. Return here for new date.
This workshop will provide tools and techniques for leaders to be effective by working through and with people for desired results. How to. . .
• Articulate a strategic Vision
• Develop and implement a comprehensive delegation plan for direct reports
• Create a Motivation Plan for each direct report
• Develop a communication system focused on generating action
• Provide objective performance feedback
Register Here
Run Your Business Smarter: The Art of Lowering Costs and Keeping Customers Happy
Darien Library         1441 Post Road, Darien CT 06820
Tuesday, May 5, 2015   6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.    Check In at 5:30 p.m.
Reducing costs is a very effective way of improving your cash flow --better than higher sales or increasing your price. This workshop will cover how to uncover problems of cost and inefficiency and will review some tools to solve them.
• 5 Useful Concepts and Principles in managing your business
• How to look for and define important operational weaknesses
• Examples or typical operational problems and tools to fix them
• How to best measure and improve customer satisfaction
Getting Government to Work for Your Small Business
Norwalk City Hall, Community Room 125 East Avenue, Norwalk, CT 06851
Wednesday, May 6, 2015       8:00am – 12:00noon
Learn Which Loan, Grant or Strategic Service
May Help!      Participating Agencies Presenting:

• Fairfield County SCORE
• Mayor of The City of Norwalk
• mall Business Administration Loan Program
• CT Department of Economic & Community Development
• Connecticut Innovations (SBIR) Grant Programs
• CT Procurement and Technical Assistance Program
• Department of Commerce – Export Assistance
• CT Small Business Development Center
Basics of Exporting - in house training for Taking Your Small Business Global
Fairfield County SCORE 111 East Avenue, Suite 317   Norwalk, CT 06851
Saturday, May 9,   2015                9:30am – 11:30 am
Reserve now for an export services training program to explore basics of exporting possibilities for your small business:
• Prepare to be a part of one of the largest export markets in the USA--the Norwalk-Stamford-Bridgeport Metropolitan Area
• Get training and counseling to prepare for taking your business global.
• nd overseas buyers
• Explore Financing and Credit Insurance
Search Engine Optimization
Greenwich Library    101 W. Putnam Avenue, Greenwich, CT 06830
Wedneday, May 13, 2015             6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
This program will look at SEO for small business owners - how to be found on search engine listings, how to improve your position and how you can optimize websites and social media for best results in "organic" (unpaid) search and local search results. We will discuss best practices in website design, social media platforms and other content to raise search engine standings and how to measure and adjust to improve rankings. You will learn:

• The basics of search engine optimization
• The effective use of keywords
• How to rank on local search and mobile devices
• How to use analytics to measure and maximize results
Making the Break from Employee to Consultant
New Canaan Library       151 Main Street         New Canaan, 06840
Thursday May 14, 2015 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.    Check In at 5:30 p.m.
This presentation will detail the key steps in setting up and growing a successful independent management consulting practice.
• Assessing if you are made to be an independent management consultant.
• Describing how to go about setting up your consulting practice.
• Detailing the key elements of a marketing plan for your practice.
• Articulating important messages from management consulting that are valuable for those staying with corporate employment.
Job-Matching For Consistent Performance
Ferguson Library 96 Broad Street, Stamford, CT 06901
Monday, May 18, 2015            6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
This workshop will provide tools and techniques to ensure that hiring candidates potential is considered, as well as past performance.   How to create. . .
• Position descriptions with built-in performance expectations based on current goals and anticipated needs.
• A recruiting system that emphasizes attracting those skills/talents required to maintain overall organizational effectiveness based on current needs and future Vision demands.
• A system of people development/education/training processes that ensure the availability of the right people for the job to fill any vacated key role in a timely manner.
• Pre-hiring tools to match candidates attributes to what it takes to perform consistently in a given position.
Your People as a Strategic Asset
Darien Library         1441 Post Road, Darien CT 06820
Tuesday         May 19, 2015   6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.     Check In at 5:30 p.m.
Understanding the strategic factors that make your people so important to your success. Learn:
• How to identify performance potential
• How to ensure a good match to job requirements
• Why consistent feedback on performance is critical
• Techniques to support your peoples continuous growth
• Succession planning as a total organization process
• Strategy formulation and your people's role.
LinkedIn to Grow your Business
Westport Library – 20 Jesup Road, Westport, CT 06880
Tuesday, May 19, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm - Check In at 5:30pm
LinkedIn is the largest and fastest growing professional social networking platform. Join us to learn how LinkedIn can help you grow your business.   Discover:
• The keys to a customer friendly personal profile;
• Connecting and communicating with prospects and customers;
• Increasing your referrals and recommendations;
• Managing prospect lists;
• he value of a LinkedIn Company page.
How To Develop a Business Plan in Six Easy Steps
Norwalk Public Library               1 Belden Avenue, Norwalk, CT 06850
Thursday, May 21, 2015         6:00pm to 8:00pm               Check In at 5:30pm
A Business Plan is an essential roadmap for business success.   But few small businesses ever complete a plan due to over-complicated approaches with too much theory, writing and detail. You need straightforward tools for setting goals and developing focused action plans. Then continually measure how you are doing and adjusting the plan accordingly.   You will learn:
• What is a Business Plan and why should a business owner develop one?
• The "Business Plan Express" method for existing businesses.
       o How to research the market - your industry, customers and competitors
       o How to analyze your own business
       o How to define/refine your business niche
       o How to set business objectives
       o How to create a simple action plan to achieve your objectives
       o How to set up monthly tools to monitor your progress against your goals

Fairfield County SCORE | 111 East Ave, Norwalk CT 06850
Phone: 203 831 0065 |