The Greenville Area office of the Clemson SBDC would like to welcome guest blogger Elizabeth Garrison, Ecopreneur of Ever-Green Recycling:
Earth day is today (April 22)! You may celebrate with a blurb in your company newsletter about recycling or using energy-efficient light bulbs. Your company may even be committed to a zero waste policy (Yay!). The Children’s Museum and EarthFare are celebrating by having mini-festivals where children plant vegetables in little pots. Next month, the City of Greenville is hosting a “Creating a Greener Greenville Business in Action Conference.” It seems like the “Green” bug is everywhere and is here to stay.
My business, Ever-Green Recycling, is a service provider for companies in the upstate. Obviously I will encourage your business to improve or start a recycling program. Recycling is just one sustainable practice among many, and there are many resources available to help companies become “green”.
Just like there are many resources to have “more sustainable” companies, there are many resources to help individuals start and grow their businesses.
One of my many passions is to know as much about our community as possible. Through networking and being an active member of a wide variety of organizations, I have learned about community resources for entrepreneurs and have taken advantage of many of those training opportunities.
Before I started my business, I participated in the YWCA Dream Catchers group which was part of their Empowerment program. Each week for a year, I met with seven other women who were toying with starting a business or growing their cottage businesses. Volunteers from Elliot Davis, A.T. Locke accounting, JMV Management Services, Wachovia and other Greenville businesses would take time to teach our group about their area of expertise. QuickBooks, business planning and how to hire an employee were among the many topics covered. This information has been very helpful to the creation and growth of my business. Also it is exciting to note that several of these Dream Catchers are now employed full time in their own businesses.
From my involvement with the Greenville Area Development Corporation and the Clemson Alumni Association, I learned about the Clemson Small Business Development Center (SBDC).
In 2007 I took my business plan to the SBDC and met with a counselor. That person gave me some ideas and told me that my plan needed some work. (Ouch!) Constructive criticism was just what a budding entrepreneur needed to hear to get serious about making a business model work.
Two and a half years into owning and operating my own business, I sit on the Small Business Development Center’s advisory board. I receive numerous emails daily about training and networking opportunities, and our community is fortunate to have such great resources for entrepreneurs and businesses.
Contact the SBDC if you would like a consultant to assist with your business. Get involved, use the resources, and then pass it forward.
So as Earth day approaches and you think about the resources to become more “Green,” consider other resources available to help your business. Act today to make a brighter future for our earth and your business.