On this episode of Breakthrough Barriers with Damali, we had Elliot Lee as a guest. We had the pleasure of meeting Elliot as a board member of the New York Peace Institute, which he has been a part of for over 3 years. He is a partner in the Financial Advisory Services Group, an accounting and consulting firm. A big plus about having Elliot on the show is he has a alternative dispute resolution background.
Our first caller wanted to know how a minority living in New York City (a pretty expensive city to live in) could go about finding resources to help start their own business.
The first thing you’ll need is an idea which has opportunities because opportunities generate revenue. Once you have a useful idea, create a business plan and do research on your market. Tools like the SWOT analysis will allow you to take facts and put it in a decision making framework in order to analyze your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.
Be aware of the logistics of the company. Having a clear understanding of your market, investors and projected cash flow is vital. How you present your idea is equally important. Try to share your idea with anyone who will listen. The process of talking and getting feedback/ criticism will help you refine your idea and help it become viable. The more you say your pitch out loud, the more you perfect it.
Once you have these things down packed you can move on to some useful tools.
Columbia’s Small Business Development Center has a FREE 1 hour- 1 hour ½ course which provides you with a shortcut to a business plan method. Business plans are constantly changing, the tools they give you allow you to keep updating as you refine your business. They will also help you go into detail about what your market is and help you figure things out. Business finance 101 and 102 courses are also available.
NYS & NYC have a MWBE Program (Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprises Certification Campaign) which help level the playing field for minorities starting their own business. The New York Women’s Chamber of Commerce is also a great tool which helps women get certifications.
There are, of course, qualifications and criteria to be met in order to benefit from the resources listed, but working hard to meet those qualifications will lead to your success as a business owner. Passion is the most important tool needed to get a business off the ground so remember to always keep that passion.
Do you have any barriers that we can help you break through? If so, you can leave a brief message at 646-363-6322 or comment below on our interactive blog.
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