Due to COVID-19, we will not be offering the Entrepreneurial Training Program this spring semester, 2021. We are actively working on some exciting changes and plan to offer ETP virtually in the future.
For those looking to complete a full business plan and financial projections right away, we recommend taking BizSmart Sprint and also requesting no-cost, one-on-one assistance from one of our Business Counselors. To request counseling, please complete our Electronic Request for Consultation form.
Overview of the Program
Biz Smart Sprint is your introduction into the world of entrepreneurship. In this live, virtual 6-week course, you will learn the building blocks you need to become a successful entrepreneur. Each week, you’ll discover the key components you need to start a business, including the Business Model Canvas business planning tool, understanding your customers and market, developing a marketing strategy, legal and operational considerations, and financial basics.
This course is an excellent touchpoint for:
- Entrepreneurs who are just starting out
- Participants who need a refresher on business basics
- More established businesses looking to formalize or revamp their business planning process
- Individuals who are considering the feasibility of their “big idea”
- Product or industry experts who are looking to learn how to think of their product or service in business terms
In addition to the program content, you’ll receive limited-time client access to GrowthWheel, an online platform that provides you with tools designed by an entrepreneur and used worldwide. These tools enable you to see a 360-degree view of your business and to break down business decision-making into smaller pieces – brick by brick. Your GrowthWheel account is accessible 24/7, and can be used to help you understand the different dimensions of your business, utilizing the worksheets to structure your thinking and assist you to prioritize/set your business goals.
Throughout Biz Smart Sprint, you will also receive GrowthWheel worksheets that can help you assess your strategy and articulate various aspects of your business. While these worksheets are fully optional for the course, they can help you capture your ideas visually and enable you to think through your own business’ challenges. If you plan to move forward with writing a business plan, GrowthWheel is a great place to keep all of your ideas in one place!
In this course, program participants will have 5 sessions of required instruction (2 hours each), plus one optional 1-hour session on writing a business plan. Sessions are taught by SBDC business consultants.
- Session 1: Course introduction and understanding the Business Model Canvas
- Session 2: Business value proposition, identification of key customers and market in order to determine product/market fit
- Session 3: Legal and Operational Considerations (entity selection, HR Laws/policies, insurance/liability, etc.)
- Session 4: Marketing Strategy
- Session 5: Financial basics (key terms, pricing, managing cash flow, sources of financing)
- Session 6: Writing a formal Business Plan
Location: Live Virtual
Schedule: 4:00- 6:00 pm CST
Dates: 6 sessions on Thursdays
- Thursday, July 15, 2021
- Thursday, July 22, 2021
- Thursday, July 29, 2021
- Thursday, August 5, 2021
- Thursday, August 12, 2021
- Thursday, August 19, 2021 (approximately 1 hour session, plus optional Q&A)
or call 608-262-3909 to register.
BONUS: Place 2 or more spring or summer paid SBDC courses in your cart, and use discount code SBDC10 for 10% off. Classes must be purchased in the same transaction.
*When you register: In order to prepare for your participation in this course, there is some information we need from you ahead of time. Please complete this Qualtrics survey to help us prepare for you to join the class!
Registration policy: Payment will be required at time of registration. You must have either a credit card or valid UW-Madison funding string to be able to register.
Lisa J. Smith, CEO, SMITH co.
Lisa J. Smith, CEO, founded SMITH Company in 2020 during the pandemic in a reaction to the dramatic changes affecting small to medium-sized businesses. SMITH co.’s focus is to improve an organization’s sales process and empower employees by better understanding the customer journey.
Lisa started her career as an Interior Designer earning a Bachelor of Science in Interior Design from the University of Cincinnati College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning. She worked with national and local brands across a variety of industries to bring their dreams into reality. In 1999 she founded her first consulting company DESIGN Smith in response to the shifting needs of businesses during the Dot Com boom. In 2010 she obtained her MBA from Edgewood College in Madison, WI, to pivot from design into strategic marketing and advertising. She joined the adverting field just when the digital economy was starting to take shape.
Lisa has always been a natural coach and cheerleader. She has spent countless hours mentoring others to find their true passion and develop the skills to make that passion a success. She particularly likes working with entrepreneurs, as it allows her to put her practical experience into action.