Small businesses have been a key component in reviving Michigan's economy, and many of these businesses are owned and operated by minorities and women. There are many resources aimed at helping Minority and Women Owned businesses (M/WBE) succeed, but some entrepreneurs may not be aware of them. Offering everything from funding assistance to procurement opportunities, these organizations should be bookmarked by every M/WBE business in Michigan.
U.S. Small Business Administration
Any small business should be aware of the Small Business Administration (SBA), as they offer a plethora of valuable information to help your business succeed. The SBA also has information on Women Owned Business and Minority Owned Business programs and grants. Many cities have a local branch of the SBA, and there are 83 offices throughout Michigan.
Minority Business Development Association
Along with a wealth of financial information, the Minority Business Development Association (MBDA) in Detroit also provides plenty of networking opportunities for minority owned businesses. Your business will benefit from the contacts it creates through this agency as well as the newsletters and development resources. The website also has a resource library if your needs are imminent.
Michigan Association for Female Entrepreneurs
Female business owners in Southeast Michigan should look into membership with this organization. Along with networking events, the Michigan Association for Female Entrepreneurs (MAFE) also hosts programs aimed at improving leadership skills, business strategies and more. It also offers a mentorship program to help established business owners give back and help up-and-comers.
Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
The Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to creating and enhancing business opportunities for members of the Hispanic community. Along with information about business development and other resources, the organization also promotes trade with Latin American countries, establishing a network of resources.
Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce
The Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce offers many benefits to its members to help grow their businesses, including networking events, business development resources and the chance to serve on various committees to give back to the community. It also has information available on bid opportunities, advocacy prospects, regular newsletters and more.
Michigan Economic Development Corporation
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) is an important resource for small business owners, because it has information on everything you need to start and operate your business. Whether you need assistance with startup capital, legal information or other operational issues, there are professionals at the chamber who can help you. Your business can benefit at any stage in its life cycle from start to finish.
These and other organizations can provide assistance in all facets of your business including marketing, technology, legal questions, financing and more. Joining a chamber or simply signing up for regular newsletters can help you increase your knowledge of the market and find innovative ways to manage your business.
This article was written by Alaina Brandenburger for CBS Small Pulse.
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