Times are tough and there doesn’t seem to be any relief in sight. Dismal economic reports continue to dominate the news. Even as the holiday season begins, retailers don’t anticipate the normal sales lift. According to the National Retail Federation, holiday spending is expected to increase by a merger 2.2 percent. The only bright spot in this bleak picture is the forecasted 12 percent increase in online holiday spending by Forrester Research.
I’ve been swamped with emails from SBTV.com’s small business audience asking for advice on how to survive during these volatile times. Besides providing general business strategies such as don’t panic, don’t stop marketing and identify opportunities to cut back on spending without jeopardizing your product or service, I can’t individualize my responses. And right now, a lot of small businesses need a little more focused attention. The Internet is a tremendous informational tool, but there are times when it’s more helpful to walk into an office and have a face-to-face discussion with a counselor or advisor. They can get to know you and your business which allows them to be more specific when suggesting business strategies. Plus, they’ll be available to you for follow-up help as well.
Crain’s Business New York today launched its list of more than 600 organizations with resources to help small businesses. You can access the information on Crain’s web site under the resource tab. Topics include: assistance for women and minorities: procurement assistance: and small business development centers. You’ll also find a downloadable guide for growing a business that highlights a number of small business success stories.
Most of the resources listed in the guide are located in the New York area, however, many have branches or sister organizations in other parts of the country. So if you are looking for resources check it out.