Business Assistance and Advice
See how a BEC can assist your business
To see how The Break O’Day Business Enterprise Centre can make a difference to your business, here is sample case study:
An Example of Business Assistance
A small retail business is concerned about its low sales. Times are tough and they are afraid the business will have to close. The owner decides to contact his local BEC for advice. The BEC manager and business owner agree to meet. The person is asked to bring relevant business information to the meeting.
Assessment of the Business
During the initial one-hour interview it is discovered that the business has been operating 15 months and is struggling to pay expenses. An assessment of the financial position reveals the business is carrying too much stock and is undercapitalized.
Alliance with other Professionals
A meeting is then arranged with the accountant. After discussion, it is agreed that the business should conduct a sale of some of its goods to generate cash flow. The BEC manager assists in the preparation of a concise business plan supported by financial statements from the accountant. This is then given to the bank. The retail business applies for and receives a small overdraft.
Advice on a Marketing Plan
One month later the business returns to the BEC to consult on a Marketing Plan for the next 12 months.
Counselling and Monitoring
Once the Marketing Plan has been prepared and action steps confirmed, the business agrees to meet with the BEC manager every second month for the next 6 months to monitor progress. After 12 months the business has doubled turnover. It is now making a profit for the first time. The BEC manager continues to counsel, give advice and monitor progress on an ‘as needed’ basis.
The retail business joins the BEC and receives regular newsletters, invitations to networking opportunities and business breakfasts, and training information. Through attending these events, the business owner meets other local business owners and better understands the local business environment plus forms some strategic alliances with other local business. Through his association with his BEC the business owner has developed a substantial network to draw upon when support is required.
There is ample evidence to support the fact that the micro-business sector prefers personal contact with someone from a BEC because of their small/ micro business experience and their counseling skills. Given that this sector has a high failure rate in the first 3 years of business, access to free information, referral and counseling services is vital to business survival.