SCEC WHCA DBA photo 8-29-13

IWW Coordinator Roland Bechard (left) meets with SCEC Executive Director Harold Clossey (center) and WHCA Executive Director Mark Green (right) to discuss the 2013-14 IWW class.

Sunrise County Economic Council (SCEC) and Washington Hancock Community Agency (WHCA) have joined forces to continue the highly successful Incubator Without Walls (IWW) business training program. IWW classes are set to begin September 30 at Washington County Community College in Calais and October 2 at WHCA’s office at 7VIP Drive in Machias

“SCEC and WHCA are very excited about this partnership,” SCEC Executive Director Harold Clossey and WHCA Executive Director Mark Green said in a joint release, “IWW offers a unique blend of hands-on business training resources to Down East Maine’s robust small- and micro-business community – at no cost to the businessperson. We want to keep IWW’s  impact strong for years to come, and the best way of doing so is to work together, relying on the collective strength of two local organizations that have decades of combined experience working with small- and micro-enterprises.”

IWW coordinator Roland Bechard outlined some of the topics he will cover over the next six months.

“It is a commitment, 15 three-hour sessions over the next six months, but we cover a lot of ground in that time,” Bechard said. “Businesspeople can expect assistance with building a viable business plan, opportunities to network, mentor, and develop long-lasting relationships with other entrepreneurs, access to local, state and federal resources, business management training, finance and cash-flow training, help with marketing and advertising, as well as financial and loan packaging assistance. We’ll also connect you up with other training resources out there, and help your business make the most of every opportunity to add customers, increase sales, and turn a profit because small- and micro-businesses are the heart and soul of Washington County’s economy, and we need to offer them every chance for success we can.”

Businesspeople interested in signing up for IWW must complete an application and brief business outline for their existing or proposed business. If you do not have a business plan, you may complete the business plan worksheet that accompanies the application and return these to Bechard no later than September 18.

“If you’ve never done a business plan, don’t let that stand in your way,” Bechard said. “We have an open door policy and are here to help. I’m happy to provide anyone more information about the course, or to sit down with you and discuss IWW in more detail. Starting a business is a big step, so we do everything we can to help you succeed. To put things in perspective, over 500 people just like you have taken that leap in the past 17 years, and we believe the vast majority of them are glad they did.”

To register or for more information about IWW, visit www.downeastbiz.org, download a membership application, fact sheet, poster and business plan worksheet, or contact Bechard directly at 214-2192/610-5979 or by email at rbechard@whcacap.org for these documents.