One-On-One Business Advising
The ND SBDC provides NO-COST, confidential, personalized, in-depth, individual business advising and support to existing business owners and entrepreneurs according to their specific needs to help them make better informed business decisions to start, manage, and grow or sustain their business.
ND SBDC services are delivered at no cost, however we request that clients fully participate in the process and provide feedback for surveys and testimonials.
* Please note that the national SBDC charter only allows us to work with for-profit businesses residing in North Dakota.
How to Prepare For Your Business Advising Appointment
Being prepared for your consultation appointment helps us give you the best service we can and will save you time and frustration. Our business advisors need to see the bigger picture to understand your business and determine how they can be of assistance.
If you are interested in starting a business, prepare for meeting with your ND SBDC business advisor by completing the following steps:
1. Complete the Online Request for Counseling for the location you intend to visit. A link can be found on each location page (to the right). If you are more comfortable filling out a paper registration at the center, those are available. Call the SBDC nearest you to schedule an appointment.
2. Bring anything and everything you have about your business idea, a scratch pad, notebook, or even napkin! Filling out what you can of our Business Plan Fill-In Form or Business Plan Outline if you don’t already have your own plan, can be extremely helpful for your own purposes and for your discussion with your business advisor. The business advisor can help you with the sections you have questions on, but doing this preparation gives you an idea of where to focus.
3. Bring a list and contact information for bankers (lenders), or other professionals you are working with, or plan to work with.
If you are an existing business, and are seeking expansion or advising regarding improving your business operations, your business plan, up-to-date current financial statements (such as balance sheet, cash flow and profit and loss statement), and 1-3 years of financial forecasts / projections are very helpful when meeting with an advisor for the first time.
What To Expect
At your first Advising Appointment:
- The Advisor will discuss ND SBDC and his/her advising process and philosophy
- You will give an verbal overview of your company and/or plan
- You and the Advisor will discuss any issues, needs, and concerns that require addressing
- The Advisor will discuss potential resources, tools and processes and give his/her insight and feedback concerning stated issues, needs, and concerns
- You and the Advisor will develop a follow-up plan and assignments that each of you have for the next appointment
At follow-up Appointments:
- You and the Advisor will follow-through with completing any agreed to assignments prior to each appointment. Bring with you:
- Your business plan drafts and additional work or materials
- Your budget plans and revisions
- All relevant personal and/or business financial statements from bank, originals and revisions
- Your resume
- All previous work with your advisor
- Any new relevant info
- You will notify your Advisor ASAP of any appointment that you are going to miss
- The Advisor will notify you ASAP of any appointment that needs to be re-scheduled