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Small business owners in the Czech Village New Bohemian Main Street District have a new tool.
The Small Business Lab, an online business coaching service, will provide free access to individuals known for their small business assistance and entrepreneurial abilities.
The district - home to approximately 200 small businesses - is one of 15 local Main Streets across the state to be selected for the one-year pilot program.
'2020 has been an unprecedented time to be a small-business owner,” said Abby Huff, co-executive director of Main Street for the Czech Village New Bohemia District.
Monica Vernon, the district's other co-executive director, said business owners needing help can access the Small Business Lab online at ruralideas.net/msi-small-business-lab.
'Business owners will let the business experts know who they are, what they have going and what problems they are encountering,” Vernon explained.
'It will provide them with a consultant for free who will likely set up some face time. It also might be a Zoom meeting where they can get their employees or staff involved.”
The five experts - four based in Dubuque - providing assistance through the Small Business Lab include Jordan Degree of Creative Adventure Lab; Eric Dregne, author, speaker and community builder; Wes Hartig, CEO of Med One; Rob Reinert, Northwestern Mutual; and Rebecca Undem, founder of Growing Small Towns, in Oakes, N.D.
'We have sent out a flyer to more than 200 businesses in our Main Street district,” Vernon said. 'We also will keep promoting the program through a fairly thorough email we send out each Monday.
'We are excited to be part of this program. It's a great way for us to help businesses with everything that has been thrown at them this year.”