Professional Education Course

IEDC Entrepreneurial and Small Business Development Strategies

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Course Title: IEDC Entrepreneurial and Small Business Development Strategies
Program ID: EDEV 1019P Subject: Economic Development


Registration DeadlineSection DatesFormat & LocationCEUsFeeStatus
Apr 09, 2015 (Thu)Apr 09, 2015 (Thu) - Apr 10, 2015 (Fri)Atlanta (Georgia Tech Global Learning Center) (this is an onsite course)1.15$535OPEN

Meeting Times
On the first day, check in at least 30 minutes before the class start time.

  • Thursday, April 9, 2015 (8:30 AM-4:30 PM)
  • Friday, April 10, 2015 (8:30 AM-4:15 PM)

Alternate Rates

IEDC Members

  • $435 -- IEDC member rate (by Feb 26, 2015)
  • $575 -- IEDC member rate (from Feb 27 to April 8, 2015)
  • $595 -- IEDC member rate (after April 8, 2015)


  • $535 -- Non-member rate (by Feb 26, 2015)
  • $675 -- Non-member rate (from Feb 27 to April 8, 2015)
  • $695 -- Non-member rate (after April 8, 2015)



Important Course Information

Course Description

This multi-faceted course explores the core aspects of entrepreneurial and small business development including value-add partnerships, technical assistance programs, financing, business incubation and more. Entrepreneurs and small businesses stimulate job creation, develop crucial innovations in both products and services and promote the diversification of the economic base. In this course, you will learn the financial and managerial tools economic developers use to create a climate that encourages entrepreneurial and small business development. Also, practitioners will examine the barriers they face and how communities can leverage their economic development resources to build highly integrated networks to help businesses thrive in the global economy.

How You Will Benefit

  • Identify and address the needs of entrepreneurs
  • Define urban versus rural-focused entrepreneurial and small business strategies
  • Manage technical assistance (e.g., economic gardening) programs
  • Develop and manage business incubators
  • Understand federal and state government resources (e.g., SBDCs)
  • Finance programs including micro-lending, venture capital, and angel networks
  • Create technical assistance tracking system to measure job growth and etc.

What Is Covered

  • Characteristics of entrepreneurs and small business owners
  • Promoting small business development in your community
  • Identifying and addressing the needs of entrepreneurs
  • Providing technical assistance
  • Growth potential for microenterprises
  • Development of business incubators
  • How to attract private investors and lenders
  • Micro-lending programs, SBA programs, venture capital and other innovative financing tools 

Course Administrator

Leigh Hopkins

Course Agenda

8:30 - 9:00 am Registration
9:00 - 10:15 am

Introduction to Entrepreneurship: Who are Entrepreneurs?

This course begins with a description and deeper analysis of entrepreneurial trends, survival rates, job creation, patents and etc. Specifically, this session will lay out the characteristics of entrepreneurs and small business owners, the barriers they face and how economic development organizations can promote entrepreneurial development by making their regions more fertile for entrepreneurs. Also, this session will review the different types of entrepreneurial businesses (e.g., survival, micro-enterprise, lifestyle, second-stage growth and etc.) to help practitioners better understand what resources are needed to assist an array of entrepreneurs.

10:15 - 10:30 am Break
10:30 am - 12:00 pm

Economic Gardening

This session will introduce attendees to economic gardening and how it fits into a comprehensive entrepreneurial development strategy. Having a deep understanding of your regional labor market is critical to making effective economic development policy decisions. In addition, this session will help practitioners understand ways to benchmark their economic development strategies using multiple data points.


12:00 - 1:30 pm Lunch on your own
1:30 - 3:15

The Role of Economic Development Organizations

This session will discuss the types of assistance (e.g., micro-lending, economic gardening, rural entrepreneurship, tech-based economic development, university connections/partnerships and etc.) typically available to entrepreneurs. In today's knowledge economy, the role entrepreneurs (e.g.: individuals that transform ideas into commercial and industrial uses) are key concerns to a community's business climate. Economic development organizations need to have an entrepreneurial and small business development strategy that augments the business climate of their respective community.

3:15 - 3:30pm Break
3:30 - 4:30 pm

Interactive Case Study

This session will focus on targeting public and private resources to assist entrepreneurs and small business in different stages of growth and maturity. Practitioners need to treat entrepreneurs and small businesses differently depending on their level of growth and development. This session will help EDOs learn how to successfully diversify the business climate within their community and add to the overall distinctiveness of your economic base by targeting ED resources more effectively.

9:00 - 10:15 am Rural Entrepreneurship

Encouraging entrepreneurship is a growing strategy in rural America and beyond. This session addresses how to provide rural entrepreneurs and small business owners with the necessary skills to help them establish networks of business service providers, manage a wide-variety of clients and employ the most recent innovations in technology to help grow their businesses.

10:15 - 10:30 am Break
10:30 - 12:00 pm SBA Financing and Small Business Lending

Capital is critical at every stage of business development - start-up, expansion and to remain competitive. After evaluating how much cash a small business owner has on hand, an economic developer can guide owners to capital that can be used to translate business ideas into products and services, and purchase fixed assets, such as buildings and equipment. This session will highlight financial programs that support small business development and will teach you how to help make small businesses more attractive to private investors and lenders. Topics included are SBA programs and other traditional funding programs.

12:00 - 1:15 pm Lunch on your own
1:15 - 2:30 pm Financing and Equity Options for Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses 

There are other viable options for entrepreneurs to acquire small business development funding such as commercial banks, angel investors and SBTDC programs. This session will help practitioners better understand the diverse set of funding sources available. Also, this session will improve the practitioners understanding of what lenders and angel investors are typically looking for in a start-up venture.

2:30 - 2:45 pm Break
2:45 - 4:30 pm Incubator Support

In order for businesses to be successful, they need to identify a location where it can operate, sell and/or manufacture products or services and where it can have access to a network of business support services. Incubators across the country support small and emerging businesses by fulfilling these basic needs. During this session attendees will learn how to develop business incubators to foster small business growth in their community.

4:30 - 4:45 pm Wrap-up and Certificates
* Agenda subject to change
** IMPORTANT NOTE: In order to receive full IEDC certification credit for this course and a certificate indicating course completion, participants must stay until the final session on the last day. Please make travel plans accordingly.


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