CO.STARTERS is an action-driven, collaborative process with a small and supportive group of like-minded people. Led by a facilitator who is an experienced entrepreneur, you’ll identify your assumptions about why and how your businesses will work and then talk to customers in order to validate your ideas. This approach enables you to rapidly uncover flaws in your concept and find viable models more quickly. You’ll leave the program with a deeper understanding of how to create a sustainable business, articulate your model, and repeat the process with your next great idea. Participants receive one-on-one time with the facilitators, support from Create Birmingham staff during and post-graduation, membership in the alumni network, and access to the CO.STARTERS Graduate Resources.
Geared towards entrepreneurs, artists, and nonprofits that have been in business for at least 12 months, this professional assistance program will provide $3,000 worth of consultations for local ventures with experts recruited by Create Birmingham. Every participant will have an initial intake meeting with a Create Birmingham staff member then walk staff through each building block of their business, allowing for self-discovery of potential weaknesses and knowledge areas that might need strengthening. This process will also better inform staff of how to create a customized firm-learning track with consultants who can be most beneficial.
Our series of creative entrepreneurship workshops provide tailored assistance for small businesses, artists, and nonprofit ventures. These include The Business of Creating series and video library, Roadmap Goal Setting Workshop, and Get Started Workshop. Additionally, we host stand-alone workshops designed to meet you where you are in your venture. These workshops range in topics, focussing on pricing, marketing, and customer discovery. If you are interested in having Create Birmingham host a workshop with your network, please contact Jessica Moody, Director of Programs and Operations.
Are you an artist, entrepreneur, or nonprofit looking to grow your resources, expand your network, launch a new project or enhance an existing one? Create Birmingham's Office Hours give you the opportunity for a 45-minute consultation with our staff. Whether you are an early stage, mid-career, or established, we are here to help answer your questions and offer actionable tips and practical advice in person. Office Hours are offered every Thursday of the month. Appointments are offered on a first-come, first-served basis and must be made in advance. If you find yourself unable to attend, please notify us as quickly as possible so that we offer that time slot to someone else.
Building something great is hard work. There are so many questions about what you need, where to go, and how to do it. What's harder is that so much is entirely dependent on what kind of business you have. We've put together a one-stop shop for what you need to get going if you're a business operating in Birmingham City. You'll find some are industry specific, some are based on the city or county you are operating in. Some are required for everyone in the state. If you are a business operating outside of the City of Birmingham, you can follow the framework using your local municipality. Being an entrepreneur can be stressful. Don't let it be lonely.
The Revolving Loan Program is a traditional loan program created in partnership with The Welch Group Foundation and Sabre Finance, which will administer and track the loans. Its purpose is to serve as the small-town banker with a heart, a lender who knows the unique skills, abilities and passions that the aspiring or growing entrepreneur brings to the table. The loan can be an entry point to establishing credit worthiness and history for entrepreneurs whose business model is not of immediate interest to traditional lenders. It can be a source of gap funding that completes the jigsaw for a small launch. Loans from the program cannot be the sole source of capital to start a venture.