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Extension offers small-business development workshops

Texas

The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service office in Potter County will have two community resource and economic development workshops on Oct. 16. One will be for individuals trying to grow a small business and the other for those interested in a small rural business.

Both workshops will be held at the AgriLife Extension office in Potter County a 3301 E. 10th Ave., said Brandon Boughen, AgriLife Extension agent in Potter County. Greg Clary, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension economist from College Station, will be presenting both seminars.

Cost is $25 for each class and include all materials and refreshments. Participants will need to advance register for one or both workshops before 5 p.m. Oct. 12 by calling the AgriLife Extension office for Potter County at 806-373-0713.

"Generating Income with Rural Property and Natural Resources" will be held from 8 a.m. to noon and feature the following topics:

--Generating ideas and opportunities for new era agribusinesses;

--Criteria for evaluating ideas and opportunities;

--Feasibility versus planning; and

--Planning for success: benefits of planning, what to include in a plan and implementing the plan.

This workshop suggests a variety of enterprises appropriate for individuals with smaller acreages, as well as current farmers and ranchers, Boughen said. The workshop will include suggested criteria for evaluating the feasibility of potential ventures and many of the important components of business plans for natural resource-based businesses.

The success of agribusinesses often hinges on the effectiveness of selected marketing programs in generating revenue to meet financial goals, he said. This workshop includes discussions of which marketing functions are most critical and explores how small businesses can accomplish them on a shoestring budget.

"Facing the Challenges of Growing a Small Business" will be the focus of the workshop from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. with the following topics:

--Ingredients of a Healthy Business;

--Building on a Solid Foundation;

--Turning Challenges into Opportunities;

--Alternative, Sound Growth Strategies;

--Bootstrapping and Capitalizing Growth; and

--E-Commerce as a Tool for Growth.

This workshop is designed primarily for those who are already in business or are in the early stages of starting a business, Boughen said. However, those with a solid concept for a business also will benefit greatly from information presented and discussed.

Participants will be introduced to a new innovative, one-of-a-kind management tool that will help them evaluate their current or proposed business, establish baselines, set standards of performance and make management decisions that lead to improved business performance, he said.

"Discussions will include assessing the current status of your business, building on strengths, remediating weak areas and mitigating risks," Boughen said.

Date: 10/1/2012



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