CREATIVE ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Photo Credit: Ambre Amari

THE BUSINESS OF CREATING

The Business of Creating, our virtual webinar & workshop series for artists and arts and culture organizations, is back this fall with a focus on successful grant writing. Each month will tackle a key element of grant proposals in two parts. The first session each month will feature a presentation from an expert in the field that includes a take-away exercise and an opportunity for Q&A. The second session each month is a group workshop for feedback on the completed exercise.

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CO.STARTERS

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.

Photo Credit: Ambre Amari

CREATE CONSULTS

Geared towards entrepreneurs, artists, and nonprofits that have been in business for at least 12 months, this professional assistance program will provide $1200 towards 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.

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CREATE FOUNDATIONS

We all find ourselves working very differently than we were a year ago. Whether it’s rethinking our daily routine to maximize our time and focus, reframing the products, programs, and services we offer, or reconnecting with our customers and patrons, there is a lot to work through. The constant need to adapt can be overwhelming, whether you are a small business, nonprofit, artist, or solo entrepreneur. That’s why Create Birmingham has developed this series of three self-paced workshops designed to help small businesses, nonprofits, artists, and solo entrepreneurs rethink their ventures and assess whether they are structurally sound.

Photo Credit: Ambre Amari

GET STARTED WORKSHOP

This fun and immediately useful, three-hour, hands-on workshop is designed to “kickstart” those who have a business idea or “jumpstart” those who would like to grow and expand their business through a new product and or service. Whether you’re just getting started, stuck on a particular issue, or in need of a refresher, this workshop will provide the fuel needed to get you moving. This workshop is a low-commitment opportunity to understand what’s driving you, explore your idea through the CO.STARTERS Canvas, and refine your model by learning ways to get meaningful customer feedback and start pursuing your idea today. You’ll also have the opportunity to collaborate with other members of the community and make valuable connections to help you along the way.

Photo Credit: Kelsey Weeks

OFFICE HOURS

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.

We Create Birmingham: Talaya Champion

ROADMAP GOAL SETTING WORKSHOP

Feeling the need for an annual checkup? This is your chance! This workshop is an opportunity to establish goals with corresponding tasks and assess current needs for your growing business. Using the CO.STARTERS canvas as a guide, you’ll determine tasks and milestones over the next 30, 60, and 90 days to move your business forward. While this workshop uses the canvas as a guide, it is not necessary to be a CO.STARTERS graduate. This workshop is for current and aspiring business owners, entrepreneurs, artists, makers, musicians, and advocates.

Photo Credit: Ambre Amari

SMALL BUSINESS RESOURCES

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.

I Create Birmingham: Chris Hastings

* REVOLVING LOAN PROGRAM

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.