SCORE Offers FREE Remote Counseling to Small Businesses
SCORE Charlotte is a volunteer organization consisting of 87 active, retired and semi-retired executives and business owners. As Certified SCORE Mentors, these men and women provide FREE confidential mentoring, including start-ups or expansions.
SCORE Charlotte was formed in 1965 as the 47th Chapter of SCORE National based in Washington, D. C. It is one of over 320 chapters nationwide with over 11,000 Certified SCORE members. All are dedicated to support the business community via free confidential mentoring.
“SCORE also offers free LIVE problem-solving workshops on small business tips and strategies, interactive workshops and on-demand classes and live webinars on a variety of subjects and potential business ventures throughout the year,” noted Juliette Weiland, President of the Charlotte Chapter. “These are noted on our web site, www.Charlotte.Score.org.”
Weiland added that also available from SCORE national is a Small Business Resilience Hub for remote mentoring by phone, e-mail or video conferencing on such topics as funding and finance, recovery and growth, e-commerce and technology, marketing and sales, start-up business plans among others.
“Resilience training is also offered consisting of educational material, on-line workshops and industry-specific training,” Weiland noted. “A resource portal is also available that helps small businesses find specific information, resources and financial support.”
SCORE is a resource partner of the SBA (Small Business Administration). SCORE Charlotte offices are located within SBA offices in the Charlotte South Park area.
How to Get a Mentor
Small businesses that want to talk or be assigned a mentor in the 16 counties in North and South Carolina served by SCORE Charlotte can do so by downloading a “Mentor Request
Form” found on the web sites www.Charlotte.Score.org or www.score.org. This can be done
on-line and linked back to SCORE, e-mailed to www.Charlotte.Score.org or arranged by calling 704-344-6576 and leaving a message.
“The SCORE Charlotte Intake Team will get your request, contact
you within a week and if required assign you to a certified mentor,” noted Bob Kunkle, Intake Team Chair. “The assigned mentor will then call you and set up an appointment remotely by phone, e-mail or video.
“Since we stopped on-site appointments in mid-March, remote appointments have been very well received among our clients,” noted Kunkle. “Hundreds of clients in the Charlotte Region have so far had to switch over.”
A free monthly newsletter from SCORE Charlotte is also available free of charge by e-mail.
“The last issue of the newsletter, for example, featured check lists and action plans by industry that provided specific action steps and solutions for re-opening many small businesses,” noted Danny Fischer, Executive VP External Affairs and the editor of the newsletter. “Included were action plans for restaurants, retail stores, child daycare centers, health club and fitness centers, professional service, salon, spa and barber shops, pet care, repair and maintenance services, manufacturing and non-profits.”
The newsletter also highlights U.S. Small Business Administration
services such as the Paycheck Protection Plan loans among others.
SCORE Charlotte serves clients in Mecklenburg, Gaston, Cleveland, Cabarrus, Stanly, Lincoln, Catawba, Caldwell, Alexander Iredell, Rowan and Anson counties in North Carolina and York, Union, Chester and Lancaster in South Carolina.
Workshops Offered by Zoom
Besides mentoring, SCORE Charlotte also sponsors a series of workshops via Zoom, “Simple Steps for Starting Your Business.” Detailed descriptions of each workshop and how-to sign-up for a workshop can be done on-line at www.Charlotte.Score.org.
The first workshop, “Virtual Simple Steps for Starting Your Business” focuses on testing your business idea and identifying key factors that influence start-up. These three-hour sessions are scheduled for July 15, and 22 and August 5 and 19 from 12:45 to 3:45 pm and August 13 from 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm. The first workshop is free to charge.
Four other workshops are also available via Zoom. They include “Business Concept” on July 14th, “Marketing Plan” on July 21, “Financial Projections” on July 28th and “Funding Sources and Next Steps” on August 4. The fee to attend all four of these workshops is $150.
Workshop dates in September, October, November and December for the workshops will soon be available on the web site www.Charlotte.Score.org.
SCORE Charlotte Helped 160 New Businesses Get Started in 2019
According to the SCORE Foundation, SCORE Charlotte mentors helped 169 new
businesses get started in the Charlotte Region in 2019. The SCORE Foundation is the
philanthropic arm of the national SCORE organization.
According to the SCORE Foundation, the over 87 SCORE Charlotte
volunteers conducted 3,936 client engagements in 2019. These include volunteer instructor sessions at low-cost workshops such as Simple Steps for Starting Your Business that the SCORE
Charlotte sponsors throughout the year plus numerous problem-solving seminars.
The Foundation added that as a result, 765 non-owner jobs were created in 2019 within the Charlotte Region. Of SCORE clients, 61% were women, 46% were minorities and 10% were veterans.
SCORE volunteers nationwide in 2019 started up 29,681 new businesses which resulted in 67,706 non-owner jobs. A total of 97,387 jobs were created. The cost, according to the report, to create one business was $394.
In North Carolina, the report says that 822 new businesses were started in 2019 and 1,190 non-owner jobs were created.
Beside Charlotte, other SCORE volunteer offices in North Carolina are located in Asheville, Chapel Hill, Greensboro, Hendersonville, Kitty Hawk, Morehead City, Raleigh, Sandhills and Wilmington.
For more information on SCORE Charlotte services or to volunteer as a mentor, go to www.Charlotte.Score.org , call 704-344-6576 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
SCORE Charlotte local sponsors and partners include Charlotte Business Resources, IBM, FranNet, Mass Mutual Financial Group, First Citizens Bank, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library and Spectrum Reach. For sponsorship information, contact Juliette Weiland, Chapter Chair at SCORE Charlotte.