Are you struggling to differentiate your business in the marketplace? Are you wondering if you should reexamine your core customer base? Do you feel uncertain about your marketing strategy? These are common challenges that most businesses face. The good news is that our seasoned experts of consultants have seen it all and are here for you to help guide you through these tough questions to offer a path forward to help you grow. A handful of the types of challenges we’ve helped businesses overcome include:
- Growth Capital
- Diversified customer needs
- Business intelligence requirements
- Supply Chain fitness
- New Competitors
- New Compliance Responsibilities
- Keeping a Healthy Workforce Culture
- The demands of a growing workforce
- Retaining Top Talent
- Balancing Quality and Growth
- Keeping up with a transforming market
- Identifying Strategic Opportunities
PERMITS AND LICENSES
The details of permitting and licensing can be overwhelming. Sometimes a business owner can get conflicting information from different agencies depending on who you talk to. We have experts who have been there and know how to apply and secure the correct permits and licenses for any change in your business. Whether you are relocating or expanding, we will help define the permit project scope, identify the required permits, and provide contact information for the correct agency.
When you’re ready to step away from your business, you should create a plan that ensures your company will thrive. This is not just for your legacy but also for the employees, vendors, and customers that depend on your business. Our experts help business owners evaluate their business, identify key positions in the organization and potential successors, and any necessary training and support planning. We can also help you plan and develop talent pipelines for the future.
FRANCHISE DEVELOPMENT PLANNING
Are you looking to develop a franchise strategy? We can help you develop the right approach and business plan to guide you through the process with market research, competitive benchmarking, gap analysis, and financial modeling to help explore your franchise options.
When you are ready to pursue financing, we can help you package your loan application to enhance the chances of success. We collect lender requirements to help you know what you’ll need. Then we come alongside to help prepare your business financial statements, loan narratives, and other necessities required by lenders for a loan package. And when your package is ready to be submitted, we will help shop your loan to our network partners to help you obtain the best terms and rates.
Taxes may be inevitable, but they don’t have to be overwhelming or scary. We help take the uncertainty out of taxes to develop a tax strategy that identifies incentives and rebates for your business while complying with regulations. We can also provide additional resources and referral partners to help you execute that tax plan once it is complete.
Legal & HR
Legal & HR
People make businesses great. Our consultants help you create, improve, and analyze your organizational structure and make recommendations on possible management positions and effective delegation. We can help guide you through the interview and selection process to best ensure your new hire is the most qualified while avoiding potential legal issues in the hiring process. We can also recommend available employee subsidy programs, relevant training programs, and related services.
Properly managing your workforce means understanding what motivates employees to work at their highest levels while treating them with respect and adhering to labor laws. Our mentors can also help with your strategic plan for scheduling professional development and team development for your business, assisting and providing feedback where necessary.
HOW TO RETAIN TOP-TALENT EMPLOYEE
Hiring the wrong person can cost you both time and money. Finding the right people to help realize your business goals is critical. Our experts have proven experience in developing a strategy to not only attain but retain top talent that will help your business thrive.
HOW TO NURTURE A VIBRANT WORK CULTURE
The type of culture you want to have for your business will inform the type of people you will attract and retain. Being clear about your work culture is increasingly just as important as being clear about your business plan. We can help you define and discover the right culture for your business and point you to tools such as the Strengths Finder Test to help your culture thrive.
Negotiating a new lease or renegotiating one up for renewal can bring about both obstacles and opportunities. We will work with you to analyze potential lease agreements and determine your options’ advantages and disadvantages. We can help develop a cost analysis based on targeted leases and help you determine the best opportunity. In some cases, we may be able to help you get out of your lease so that you can buy your own business property.
PATENTS, COPYRIGHTS, AND TRADEMARKS
The first person to have a great idea isn’t always the person to profit from it. If you don’t take steps to protect your idea, someone else may beat you to it. Our experts are experienced in understanding each type of intellectual property (IP) protection. We will work with you to help you choose both free and fee-based services needed to implement your best IP strategy.
Branding is all about creating relationships and understanding how your customers think. We can help you envision how consumers may value your brand, help you reevaluate the purpose and meaning of the brand as it evolves, and reposition it to grow your customer relationships. This may include a strategy for brand redevelopment, customer communication and rebrand launch strategy, and referrals to other resources that can help you.
Markets are constantly evolving, and so your business offerings may evolve as well. We will counsel you to adapt and identify new customers and other potential new opportunities in the market, helping to redevelop a marketing strategy and execution plan based on a market segmentation analysis and industry research.
ADVANCED WEB DEVELOPMENT/CONTENT DEVELOPMENT
Ensuring your website accurately represents your business is important. It is often the first impression you make on your customers. We will work with you to create an action plan with timelines and budgets for improving your web presence.
ADVANCED ANALYTICS/SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION
75% of people won’t go past the first page of search results. If you don’t maximize your web presence to appear on that first page, you miss the nearly 63,000 searches that occur every second. We will work with you to analyze and develop a comprehensive strategy to maximize SEO, AdWords, and website promotion strategies to improve your search results.
We partner with several specialized firms to help you navigate the complexities and opportunities of government contracts.
BIDS and RFPs
Our partners can help you define the requirements, due dates, and outcomes of prospective bids and evaluate the likeliness of attaining the bid.
The SBA manages the 8(a) program to help businesses owned and controlled at least 51% by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. Participants who are 8(a) certified can receive sole-source contracts up to $4 million for goods and services and $6.5 million for manufacturing. We can help identify key requirements for 8(a) certifications. If/Once 8(a) certified, we can then outline the necessary steps necessary to apply for the 8(a) Development Program.
FEDERAL/LOCAL, STATE, PRIVATE, UTILITY, AND OTHER OPPORTUNITIES
We can recommend various agencies that have bids to match your firm’s services. Criteria for bid selection are then analyzed to determine your probability of a bid award.
Effective procurement involves identifying and working with reliable suppliers who are cost-appropriate and deliver acceptable quality and on time. We can assist with methods of supplier evaluation, risk mitigation, and the entire procurement process. If an RFP or RFI is required, we can help frame it appropriately for your business.
We have experts who can help you to identify opportunities in international markets for your imported or exported products. This includes an industry analysis of your imported and exported products and critical product specifications to establish quality.
The best outcome to negotiation is a scenario where both parties realize a positive result and are eager to work with each other again. We can counsel you in negotiations with suppliers, including how to develop templates and formats necessary to facilitate negotiation dialogue.
We are not attorneys and cannot provide legal advice, but our experts can help craft an outline based on your expectations, obligations, and other details necessary for international business agreements. With experience working with international markets, we can help you better understand different types of agreements and the potential risks within various countries’ legal frameworks. To further develop effective legal agreements, we also can suggest resources and legal references necessary to help develop effective legal agreements.
Compliance with regulatory guidelines is essential in ensuring your business maintains its momentum and stays in business. We can work with you on various identification codes necessary to research import or export compliance data. We can help research regulatory taxes, duties, fees, and regulations related to your products or services. Additionally, we can refer you to experts who can provide operational and documentation compliance procedures to reduce, manage, and monitor potential compliance risks.
We can assist you with accessing and identifying capital sources for sales purchases, international pricing, reduction of payment risk, and more.
We can partner with you to develop cost-benefit analyses for international logistics costs for each key trade lane. An action plan is created to address risks and opportunities to reduce logistics costs and increase value and efficiency in your supply chain. We then recommend resource partners and to support your supply chain needs.
We can also provide consultation on the Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control process (DMAIC) and how it applies to your business. Lean identification and measurement tools are identified so you can map and analyze critically. We’ll then show you how data plans can refine defect measurements. We can also help you develop an action plan to implement and monitor efficiency improvements.
Your First Steps Towards Financing
Your First StepsTowards Financing Establishing relationships with creditors and lenders prior to seeking funding is key…
Women-Owned Business Resources
BUSINESS RESOURCES FOR WOMEN IN S Starting a Business The Sonoma Small Business Development Center is here to…
Helpful Links and Tools
Resources By Topic: General | News/Media | Inventions/IP | Trademarks/Copyrights | Import/Export | Financing | Business Planning |…