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Unformatted text preview: just discussed as sources of information: the SBA,
SCORE, and SBDCs.
New businesses, small businesses, and business planning are good for the economy. Governments,
higher education institutions, and business organizations know that and try to help businesses as
much as possible. For you and your business, there is probably a great deal of help available. But you
need to know where to ask.
In these pages, I only describe the United States organizations offering help to small business and
start-ups. In other markets, similar organizations exist. Check with your Chambers of Commerce and
industry organizations, government development organizations, and business schools. CHAPTER 9: THE BUSINESS YOU’RE IN 9.11 Consultants, Accountants, and Attorneys
Consultants, accountants, and attorneys are the ﬁrst line of business assistance. They aren’t really
the main focus of this chapter, however, and not because they aren’t, in general, excellent sources
of information. We have the utmost respect for the value of professional advice. In this discussion,
however, we deal with relatively low-cost sources of business assistance, such as development
agencies, local adult education and continuing education schools, and online information services.
We don’t have a lot to add to the general doctrine of how to choose a good business professional.
Let the buyer beware. A good business professional is always worth the money, if you have the
money. Unfortunately, not all professionals are good, and it’s hard to know who’s good until you’ve
Always try to get some good references on professionals — other clients, satisﬁed clients — before
you use them, and don’t forget to check those references. Furthermore, it is not always true that
with business consultants you get what you pay for. In our experience, there is not always a direct
correlation between the fees charged and the value provided.
The SBA says consultants “can be a great asset to a small busine...
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- Winter '09