Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Do You Have a $10,000 Business Plan? This Guy Does.

This summer, woodworking student Noah Fiorentino received a check for $10,000 from the Sequoyah Fund in Cherokee, NC.  Each year, the Sequoyah Fund sponsors a 7-county business plan competition among their three Community Colleges.  Since the competition's inception three years ago, Haywood students have won it each year.  The goal is simple: create jobs, support entrepreneurs, and encourage college students to follow their passion.

After working in a small guitar factory in Chapel Hill for several years, Noah came to HCC to hone his woodworking skills.  Before graduating, he took a business plan class and the results were astounding.  With graduation quickly approaching and the encouragement of his instructor, Noah submitted his business plan to the competition.  A few weeks later he received notification that he had won.

Fiorentino Guitars is currently seeking a location and is considering calling the HCC Student Incubator home.

Noah - we wish you the best as you embark on your entrepreneurial journey and we are proud to have you as a member of the HCC Family.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Fall Registration Open June 10th - July 18th

Are you ready to take the plunge and start your own business?!?  Fall registration and academic advisement will be open from June 10th - July 18th.  There will not be a "late" registration because current students typically register during the spring semester for their fall classes. 

If you are interested in studying Entrepreneurship, please call Kathy Brooks at 828-565-4021 to make an appointment for advisement.  We would love to talk to you and help you achieve your dream of becoming your own boss!

Friday, March 22, 2013

HCC to Offer Business Plan Workshop in Preparation for Haywood Chamber's Business Plan Competition

The Small Business Center at HCC will offer a free seminar entitled "Business Planning for Business Success" on Wednesday, March 27th, from 6-9 on campus in the Student Center, first floor.

This workshop is a timely offering as the Haywood Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring a Business Start Up Competition with a award(s) made up to $10,000.  You will be able to study the steps to actually writing your plan and learn how to cover what you really need in a short but useable plan.

Russ Seagle of Seagle Management Consulting from Cullowhee, NC is the presenter.  Seagle brings his many years of business experience and humor and is a frequent and popular presenter.  For more information or to preregister for this free program, call the Small Business Center at 828-627-4512.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Student Gets Loan for First Crop

Our heartfelt congratulations goes to Entrepreneurship student Austin Francis.  He has just received his first business loan to plant 3 acres of tobacco!  He is leasing the land and equipment and has already ordered his plants.  These were all skills he learned in the ETR 240 Funding for Entrepreneurs class.  "I've never bought anything on credit, therefore I have no credit.  It's a hard spot to start out in, but this class prepared me for it and I intend to take my responsibility for the loan very seriously.  I am an Entrepreneur!" said Austin.

The tobacco plants will arrive on May 10th, the day after he walks across the stage to receive his Assoicate of Applied Science degree in Entrepreneurship.  Congratulations Austin, we are so proud of you!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Congratulations to Our Winners!

Congratulations to our winners from the various contests throughout Entrepreneurship Week 2013!  Thank you to everyone who participated, it was an exciting week!  Here are the awards:

 "I Have An Idea" Contest winner: Chad Canupp

Entrepreneur Showcase (Professional Crafts Division)
  • 1st Place: Linda Azar of "Linda Azar Metalsmith"
  • 2nd Place: Helen Geltman of "Helen Geltman Pottery"
  • 3rd Place: Cathy Babula of "Babula Pottery"
Entrepreneur Showcase (Products and Services Division)

  • 1st Place: Vicki Passmore of "The Memory Archive"
  • 2nd Place: Scott Burns of "One Stop Coffee"
  • 3rd Place: David Elliott of "CAN I Help You?"

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Details, Details, Details

Most of us are comfortable recognizing the importance of "location, location, location", but the concept students seem to struggle with the most is "details, details, details".  How does one move from the hypothetical into planning for reality?  Better yet, how do you plan for success?

Here are some tips for embracing the need for details in your business plan:

1) Remove expectations - Most students want to know "how long" a business plan should be.  It needs to be as long as it needs to be.  However, a solid finished business plan should be somewhere between 20-30 pages.  This is not something to worry about when you are doing your initial research and "connecting the dots".

2) Work in increments - Do not concern yourself with the entire picture at first.  Break it down into the major sections and work on each section at a time.  These are traditionally Products and Services, Marketing, Operations, and Financials.

3) Research - Solid research from reputable sources is essential to obtaining the details necessary to write your business plan in-depth.  This cannot simply be done surfing the web.  Refer to our Helpful Links page to access databases and various agencies who collect data.  If you need research instruction, make an appointment with one of the HCC Librarians for a Research Consultation.

4) Expect more from yourself - Force yourself to write the document as if it is a presentation of facts, not a paper that explains your business concept.  This means speaking firmly about existing conditions and future expectations.  Avoid phrases like "will be".  Make a decision and defend it.

5) Walk away - There is a point at which an author is not contributing value to their work.  Put it down and walk away for a few days.  Then start again with fresh ideas and perspective.

If you find yourself struggling to truly write a business plan, it is probably because you are being overly simplistic.  Get specific!  Then you will encounter the problem of editing and condensing the document down to a reasonable amount of reading!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

New Research Guide

The Entrepreneurship faculty and library staff have been working diligently to put together a series of easy-to-find resources for students to conduct entrepreneurship research.  Please check out the Entrepreneurship Subject Guide on the library's website for links to journals, databases, and reputable information related to topics like marketing, growth and development, legal issues, and much more!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

New Semester, New Adventures!

We offically welcomed the Spring 2013 semester on Monday and we are already off to an exciting start!

This semester, our Introduction to Entrepreneurship class will be changing gears.  It has two main focuses: the entrepreneurial mindset and the operations plan.  To learn more about the entrepreneurial mindset, the class is reading the book "The Start-Up of You".  It follows the premise (as does our program) that we are all entrepreneurial in spirit and we must learn to think of ourselves that way.  This means having a sense of self-awareness, building our brand, networking, and taking calculated risks.  What an exciting topic!  What an exciting semester!