First Steps to Starting a Business

Thinking About Starting a Business? Start Here!

This free, interactive, online class will help you explore your business idea and assess your entrepreneurial readiness as well as identify your own strengths and weaknesses as a business owner.  Discover what information you need and where to find it.

This course is provided to you at no charge courtesy of the Wisconsin Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at UW-Madison.

This interactive online class includes downloadable worksheets, hands on exercises, local entrepreneur stories, and additional resources to determine your next steps.

You will learn how to answer these questions:

  • Do you have the right personality, skills and life situation to start and manage a business?
  • Do you have a realistic business idea?
  • Is your business idea well thought out?
  • Are you financially ready to start a business?
  • What are your next steps?


Location: Anywhere
Schedule: Anytime
Fee: No Cost

First Steps to Starting a Business STARTS HERE

“The First Steps to Starting a Small Business course offers the opportunity to take away so many decisions and choices when getting started as an entrepreneur. Instead, the course offers the chance for guidance, structure, reflection, and an opportunity to take that next foreseeable step. The class made a big difference in my ability to move forward rather than being stuck. I especially enjoyed the stories of Wisconsin entrepreneurs and their journeys in starting a small business. It is pretty amazing that this course is offered at no cost!”

Nisa (wisconsin)

Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance. Contact the UW-Madison SBDC office at to request accommodations or to ask general questions about the SBDC, classes and consulting.

The Wisconsin SBDC Network is a proud part of the Institute for Business & Entrepreneurship in the University of Wisconsin System.
It is funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.