By Charles “Tee” Rowe –

Happy SBDC Day! SBDC Day is a national celebration of the success of SBDC clients and the impact that SBDCs have on our nation’s prosperity.

SBDC Day unites the nearly 1,000 SBDC centers across the country and the millions of clients they have served over the years by sharing, in real time, the success stories of SBDC clients and the SBDCs that serve them. Typically, this special day is celebrated with social media campaigns, public relations initiatives, online and in-person events. In light of the recent COVID-19 pandemic and its unprecedented impact on everyone’s lives, especially small businesses, we have decided to focus this fourth annual SBDC Day on how SBDCs can help their local small businesses and clients prepare and persevere in the weeks to come.

We encourage all entrepreneurs and small businesses to check out and bookmark our new “COVID-19 Small Business Resources” webpage. We will continue to add information, resources and opportunities for businesses, to help them keep their businesses afloat as they navigate through this challenging period. And check out your local SBDCs as well — they are there to help!

SBDC clients need their advisors’ expertise now more than ever. For over 40 years SBDCs have been building trust, building communities, and advising small businesses through financial crises, natural disasters, and other misfortunes. This year is no different.

This SBDC Day we ask SBDC clients to share their stories or questions online, and we ask our SBDC Day Ambassadors and other friends in the field to highlight resources they have in their toolboxes that can assist people and companies facing this crisis. We ask everyone to include the #SBDCDay hashtag in their social media communications so we can track and share questions and resources that are posted. Together through this pandemic, SBDCs and their clients will “Stay Calm and Small Business On.”

If you aren’t familiar with the SBDC program and would like more information, please take a few minutes to check out the rest of my blog. 

Small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs can contact their local SBDCs for free business consulting and at-cost training, on business planning, accessing capital, marketing, regulatory compliance, technology development, international trade and more.

How can SBDCs do this? They can do it because SBDCs were created by the U.S. Congress and work in partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration. SBDCs are funded by the U.S. Government, state governments and other public and private sector partners, and they are hosted by universities, colleges, state economic development agencies and private sector partners such as chambers of commerce.

SBDC clients get results. SBDC clients start a new business every 32 minutes; create a new job every 5.3 minutes; access $100,000 in capital every 9.4 minutes; and make $100,000 in new sales every 8 minutes.

To give you an idea of how effective SBDCs are, consider this:

– The average SBDC client’s annual sales growth is an estimated 18 percent, while an average business sees annual sales growth of 5.6 percent.

– The average SBDC client’s annual job growth is an estimated 17.7 percent, while an average business sees annual job growth of 1.5 percent.

No wonder more than 90 percent of SBDC clients recommend SBDC services and give SBDCs an average of 4.44 out of 5 stars.

When small businesses succeed, our communities and our nation succeed. Almost half of all private sector employees work for small businesses, and small businesses account for 65 percent of net new job creation in the USA. Successful and thriving small businesses are crucial to creating a prosperous economy and keeping the American dream alive.

You can find out more about SBDCs on our website. Better yet, you can find your nearest SBDC by going to americassbdc.org/find-your-sbdc. With nearly a thousand SBDCs across the country, there’s an SBDC near you. Whether you’re looking to start a new business or grow your existing business, America’s SBDCs are a resource you should know about. Follow #SBDCDay to join the conversation and celebrate SBDC Day!
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About the Author: Charles “Tee” Rowe is the President and CEO of America’s SBDC, the association that represents America’s nationwide network of Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs). Find your nearest SBDC here.