Tag Archives: professional development

Four Benefits of Being a SCORE Volunteer

With April’s status as National Volunteer Month, what better time to show appreciation for the contributions SCORE volunteers make to the business community? At SCORE Portland, our team of more than 60 certified volunteer mentors has counseled and provided small business advice to thousands of entrepreneurs who wanted to start a business or had a business challenge to overcome.

Through sharing their expertise, experience, and guidance, SCORE’s volunteers assist local businesses as they prepare to launch and grow. Not only are our volunteers an invaluable resource for current and aspiring entrepreneurs, but they learn and grow as well! Here are just a few benefits of becoming a SCORE volunteer:

 

  • Hone your leadership skills.

Through providing guidance and feedback to SCORE clients and serving in leadership roles, you strengthen your skills and community connections.

 

  • Fine-tune your business acumen.

As you work with clients and other SCORE mentors, you develop your collaboration and communication skills. You also increase your knowledge about varied aspects of starting and operating businesses in a variety of industries.  Life long learners will enjoy the constant stimulation.

 

  • Connect more extensively with the business community.

Volunteering with SCORE opens the door to meeting a wide variety of local entrepreneurs, community  leaders, public officials, and other organizations who share the mission of providing resources to the small business community. You never know where those connections can lead!

 

  • Learn new technology tools and apps.

Depending on your involvement in SCORE, you could learn to use (or boost your proficiency at using) new software, App’s and other technology tools.

All of these opportunities to add to and improve your knowledge and skills can give you an advantage not only from a volunteer standpoint, but in your own professional pursuits.

 

Want to be a SCORE Volunteer? Here’s How!

If you’re ready to help your community thrive and learn new skills, consider volunteering with SCORE Maine or your local SCORE chapter.

At  SCORE Maine, we are always seeking qualified individuals who can serve as mentors (in-person or virtual) and/or lead SCORE workshops. What makes a great mentor? We look for individuals with professional knowledge, skills, and experience (either as business owners or working for others) that can be applied in helping startup and established entrepreneurs.  Social EQ required.

If that sounds like you, please contact us to apply. We would love to talk with you about how your business insight can help others succeed and grow.

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Professional Development Benefits Your Business

Whether you’re a brand new entrepreneur or a small business owner who has been in business for years, expanding your knowledge and fine-tuning your skillsets are crucial for sustained success.

Professional development never goes out of style, and if you make it a priority, it can set your business apart from your competitors. Dedicating time and energy on a continual basis to honing your talents and learning new things will show your customers that:

  • You’re dedicated to providing them with the best products and services.
  • You can provide them with more value than your competition can.
  • You have a grasp on the bigger picture and are better able to propose solutions.
  • You’re worth every penny they’re paying you.

Finding Opportunities For Professional Development Isn’t Difficult. Finding Discipline To Follow Through With Professional Development Can Be.

As you explore how you might boost your knowledge and improve your skills, consider these effective and affordable options:

  • Reputable industry or topical blogs—Look for blogs that specifically address topics related to your types of products and services and for those about managing a business.
  • E-books—Ditto on what we said about blogs.
  • Business podcasts—With a vast selection of podcasts about leadership, marketing, business, and industry trends out there, you have plenty of options. To stay productive when you sit down to listen, consider hitting “play” while you’re taking care of “no brainer” busy work.
  • SBA online training center courses—In addition to a wealth of informative articles, the SBA also offers a number of free online courses to guide you through different aspects of starting and managing a business.
  • Local lunch & learns, seminars, etc.—Chambers of commerce often offer these types of programs to help their members manage their businesses better. They also provide the opportunity to network with other professionals in the community.

To make the most out of any of the above professional development tools, also consider signing up for free face-to-face or email mentoring with certified SCORE mentors. They have knowledge of and experience in every aspect of starting and running a business, so they’re well equipped to guide you as you navigate the opportunities and challenges of entrepreneurship.

Ready to get your small business off the ground or take it to the next level? Contact us to get started!