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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2014 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)
Greenwich Library 101 West Putnam Avenue, Greenwich, CT 06830
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!
Tuesday, October 14 - Self-Assessment/Business Plan
Tuesday, October 21 - Marketing Strategy & Research
Tuesday, October 28 - Marketing Execution
Tuesday, November 4 - Financial Reporting & Planning
Tuesday, November 18 - Funding Sources/Conversation with Entrepreneurs

Seating is limited. Registration is required.

Participants will receive a Certificate of Completion at the end of the program.
The Norwalk Inn & Conference Center   99 East Avenue, Norwalk, CT 06851
All sessions will be 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm (with a break midway)

Sessions are a week apart on consecutive Tuesdays:

Tuesday, September 30:   "Kickoff" - Inspiration and valuable wisdom from kickoff speaker, Jim Cain
Tuesday, October 7: "Having a Plan" - Learn the elements of a realistic and effective business plan
Tuesday, October 14: "Getting the Money" - Realize various ways and means of acquiring financing
Tuesday, October 21: "Planning for a Profit" - Find out the basics of financials, taxes and insurance
Tuesday, October 28: "Employing Technology" - Discover how technology can strengthen your business
Tuesday, November 4: "Spreading the Word" - Learn about marketing, advertising and communications
Tuesday, November 11: "Keeping Customers" - Understanding the importance of sales, customer service and discover great resources and reference materials for business
Tuesday, November 18: Graduation Reception - Certifications are presented to program graduates
How Social Media Fits Into Your Marketing Plan
New Canaan Library - The Lamb Room   151 Main Street, New Canaan, CT   06840
Thursday, October 2, 2014
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
Here is an opportunity to learn from two expert speakers about Social Media and find out how it fits into your own small business Marketing. At this session you will learn about:
• Setting a Social Strategy
• Managing and Measuring Your Social Media
• Integrating Your Social Media with Your Offline Marketing
Making Your Marketing More Effective
Ferguson Library 96 Broad Street    Stamford, CT 06901
Monday, October 6, 2014   
6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.       Check In at 5:30 p.m.
FREE Workshop
This workshop will unlock the keys to effective marketing.
You will learn how to:
• Find and attract profitable customers that are the best fit for your company.
• Segment your customers into like groups to better help you serve them.
• Determine how your customers make their buying decisions and how that affects your marketing.
• Develop effective branding and marketing messaging.
• Define your company's competitive advantages.
Internet Marketing for Small Business ¬– Making SEO Work
Westport Library 20 Jesup Road, Westport, CT 06820
Tuesday, October 7, 2014   
6:00 – 8:00 pm             Registration at 5:30 pm
FREE workshop
The seventh in this series of eight presentations on internet marketing, this program will look at SEO for small business owners - how you can be found on search engines 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:
• Basics of search engine optimization (SEO)
• Steps for raising a website's SEO ranking
• Local search and being found on mobile devices
• How to use analytics to maximize results
Growing a Service Company – A Discussion on Operating a Property Management & Real Estate Brokerage & Service Company
Norwalk City Hall             125 East Avenue         Norwalk, CT 06851
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
FREE workshop
This workshop will cover the Property Management and Brokerage business model and what it takes to operate successfully.
• The Property Management and Commercial Brokerage Business Model.
• Getting Started
• Customers and their needs
• How the Business has changed
• Business Challenges
• Lessons Learned
• The Future of the Business
eCommerce Empire: Building and Running a World Class eCommerce Business
Weston Library 56 Norfield Road, Weston, CT 06883
Thursday, October 9, 2014
6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Check In at 5:30 p.m.
FREE workshop
Are you looking to build a successful business online, promote an existing “brick and mortar” business on the Web, or just sell some stuff from your attic on eBay? If you are thinking about any sort of Web business, you will benefit from this fast-paced, entertaining program that is designed to teach you the keys to e-commerce success.
• The seven steps to building a successful online business;
• the four things people look for when they search online;
• why you need a website for your small business, and what should (and shouldn’t) appear there;
• how to integrate your website with your eBay, Amazon, Yahoo!, Etsy, social media profiles and other e-commerce platforms;
• how to market your online business successfully, both on the Web and offline; and
• how to cope with sales taxes, privacy concerns and other legal and tax issues you will face when selling online
How to Develop a Business Plan in Six Easy Steps
Darien Library   1441 Post Road, Darien, CT 06820
Tuesday, October 14, 2014       6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
A business plan is an essential road map for business success, but few small businesses ever complete a plan due to over-complicated approaches that entail too much theory, writing and detail. This workshop will give you pragmatic, straightforward tools for setting goals, developing action plans for achieving them, measuring how you are doing on a ongoing basis and adjusting 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.
• How to research the market - your industry, customers and competitors
• How to analyze your own business
            How to define/refine your business niche
• How to set business objectives
• How to create a simple action plan to achieve your objectives
• How to set up monthly tools to monitor your progress against your goals
How Financial Statements Help Run the Business Now and Plan for the Future
Ferguson Library 96 Broad Street, Stamford, CT 06901
Monday, October 20, 2014
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 weaknesses
• How to build use financial statements to estimate the financial value of your growth strategy.
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW   about Patent, Trademark, Copyright and Trade Secret Law
Fairfield Library,   1080 Old Post Road    Fairfield, CT 06824
Tuesday, October 21, 2014       7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Check In at 6:30 p.m.
Intellectual Property is the foundation of many successful businesses, and it is important to develop a strategy early on. Proper protection of IP can increase valuation when searching for investors and can protect your position in the market. The workshop will provide an introduction to:
• Trademarks
• Copyrights
• Patents
• Trade Secrets
Business Law 101- What You Need To Know… Second Workshop in SCORE Legal Series
Norwalk City Hall  125 East Avenue, Norwalk, CT   06851
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
Business Legal issues confront entrepreneurs at all stages of the business life cycle from inception to exit.   This workshop offers historical, practical and timely topics relevant to business owners, managers, executives and investors. You will learn about:
• Court System and Alternative Dispute Resolution
• Contract Law as it pertains to business issues
• Law of agency in contractor, partner and employee relationships
• Business related torts including negligence, product liability and defamation
• Compliance with tax, employment, and regulatory environment
2015 Technology Planning
Rowayton Library          33 Highland Avenue,            Norwalk, CT 06853
Thursday, October 23, 2014
7:30 am - 8:30 am
The only constant when it comes to technology is that there is constant change.   Keeping current with technology changes and trends is time consuming and robs businesses of precious time they need to be directing to servicing their clients and growing their companies.

October is business planning season and technology needs to be planned and budgeted for.   Attend this workshop and get the information you need to create the technology sections for your 2015 business plan and budget.

• Key sections of the technology section of your business plan
• Key cost items that should be included in your technology budget
• Solutions, services and vendors recommended for small/mid sized companies
• What to look for when selecting a technology vendor
Internet Marketing for Small Business: Making Email Marketing Work
Westport Public Library         20 Jesup Rd, Westport CT 06880
Tuesday, October 28, 2014            6:00pm to 8:00pm      
Registration & Networking 5:30pm
This workshop will demonstrate how to make email marketing the single most cost-effective marketing tool for the small business owner. Communicating with prospects and customers regularly helps small businesses stay connected and generate increased referrals, repeat sales, and unwavering customer loyalty. The presentation is packed with specific, step-by-step information and includes an interactive Q&A session.
You will learn:
• How easy it is to create and send professional-looking email newsletters and promotions
• How to create and build a strong permission-based customer list
• How to craft emails that will be opened, read and acted upon
• How to measure results to sharpen email marketing programs as they go along
Getting Government to Work for Your Small Business
Ferguson Library 96 Broad Street, Stamford, CT 06901
Thursday, October 30, 2014 12:00noon – 2:00pm
Registration Starts at 11:30am
Learn Which Loan, Grant or Strategic Service
May Help!

Participating Agencies Presenting:

The Ferguson Library
Fairfield County SCORE
Office of the Mayor of The City of Stamford
Small 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
Bring your Brown Bag Lunch
Ferguson Library will Provide Coffee and Cookies
How to Succeed at Sales:   A Guide To Sustainable Success In Direct Sales
Ferguson Library 96 Broad Street,    Stamford, CT 06901
Monday, November 3, 2014
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm | check-in starts at 5:30 pm
This workshop will reveal the tools needed to be successful at direct sales in any industry and unlock the secrets of how to manage a top-tier sales team. This class will teach you more than how to simply “make the sale.” It will cover more than how to simply "make the sale", it will help you create a strategy around long term, sustainable sales success for you and your employees.
This workshop will answer the following questions:
• What is the objective and role of a direct salesperson?
• What does a sales-cycle look like?
• What is the best way to manage a prospect base? What is CRM? What are the best practices for CRM usage?
• How should a direct salesperson be compensated?
• How can you best motivate and manage sales people?
Technology Trends that are Changing Small Business
Westport Public Library         20 Jesup Rd, Westport CT 06880
Thursday, November 6, 2014            6:00pm to 7:30pm      
Registration 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 – Running your business when you’re out of the office
• Connectivity to Customers – What’s replacing TV, radio and print
• Document Availability – Online but what are the pitfalls
• Security – Basic requirements and how you achieve them
• Analytics – Resources for planning your next moves
LinkedIn Tips for Entrepreneurs and Job-Seekers with America’s LinkedIn Lady Carol McManus
Fairfield Library    1080 Old Post Road Fairfield, CT 06824
Thursday, November 13, 2014 7:00pm to 8:30pm      
Registration 6:30pm
In today’s world of social media, the conversation always goes to Facebook and Twitter – both valuable and important – BUT, you may be missing the most powerful tool if you are not active on LinkedIn. This is your best professional network platform whether you are trying to grow your own business or looking for your next opportunity.   You will learn:
• The essentials of a powerful profile
• Tips on how to grow your connections
• Secrets on getting warm introductions
• Do’s and Don’ts of group participation

In just a few minutes a day on LinkedIn, you can explode the results you are getting and solidify long-lasting professional relationships that will benefit you throughout your career.

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