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Do I need a business degree to be a Wyoming entrepreneur?

May 13, 2011

Now that is a big question and a great one. Not necessarily but learning what a person who has earned a business degree knows is unavoidable to be successful. Starting with what skills do you need, in my opinion an overview of business administration and basic accounting is step one. Ideally, you would take some classes at the excellent community colleges here in Wyoming, to really be serious about the venture and receive a needed education. But there are other, less time-consuming options to credit course. One is our own SmallBizU (small business university) which offers online, business mini-courses. They are free to you and each one takes about 2 hours to complete. Here is the link: http://www.smallbizu.org/coursecatalog.htm. You may take several courses that are categorized by Money, Management, and Marketing.

 

Another option that every aspiring entrepreneur in Wyoming should take advantage of is the creation of a business plan. Yes, this is a document a lender or investor requires. It is also a mental, learning journey that surprises even veteran entrepreneurs by how much it teaches them. The business plan template will systematically ask you questions, guiding you to think through most if not all major considerations of starting and operating a business. You will learn a lot going through this process. The process, by the way, takes around 6 months when done right. We have templates for you to use and, business counselors to provide research information and answers to what should go where on the plan if the terminology seems foreign. We’re here for you.

 

Finally, here are some ideas with what you should be able to do with a computer, before getting too serious about starting a business. Start with a powerful email software like Microsoft Outlook. Outlook allows you to do much more than use email. You should be able to use the calendar function so you don’t miss important deadlines and meetings. And, you can send appointments to others.

 

Another significant software is QuickBooks, or a similar product like Peachtree. Learning QuickBooks is also a way to gain a basic understanding of accounting, although it does not take the place of an accounting class. We have a CPA on staff that specializes in QuickBooks. Find her here: http://uwadmnweb.uwyo.edu/sbdc/start_a_business/quickbooks.html.

 

Also important are Excel, PowerPoint (sometimes), Facebook, and Microsoft Publisher. Apple has equivalent softwares. Not a bad idea to learn Google docs which is a free service allowing you to post editable documents which you can access anywhere.

 

Seem like a lot to know and learn? That’s why Wyoming Entrepreneur is here for you. Let us help you make sense of the path to starting a business, and the journey of running one over the years. Register for free as a client at http://uwadmnweb.uwyo.edu/SBDC/consulting.html. After registering, a business counselor will contact you for an appointment.

Mark Atkinson



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Category: Entrepreneur

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