A business plan is not an artifact; it is not paperwork. It is a dynamic document that tells your story and presents a cohesive vision of what your business is, where it is going, and how it will get there. Whether you are a startup or an established business transitioning into a new space, business planning is key to maintaining focus, assessing risk, and growing a well-operated, well-managed and well-capitalized business.
At the Commerce Corporation, our Client Services Team works directly with businesses to help them get from A to B. If a business is in the concept or start-up stage, the Commerce Corporation can provide templates and worksheets to begin creating a business plan, and connect clients with partners who offer free or low-cost counseling and expertise.
We refer clients to Rhode Island SCORE, a volunteer organization of working and retired business owners, professionals, and executives with experience in all aspects of business management, the RI Small Business Development Center at the University of Rhode Island, which offers no-cost expert counseling, and the Center for Women & Enterprise in Providence, which offers a range of classes and programs, including business accelerators. As new business owners go through these processes, Commerce Corporation staff follow up periodically to talk, monitor the process, offer constructive feedback, provide additional information, and guide entrepreneurs through the next steps.
View Center for Women & Enterprise Financial Literacy video – English | Spanish
For established businesses, the Commerce Corporation’s business planning services focus on growth, developing competitive strategies, assessing risk, and attracting capital. If a company is moving into a new location, the Commerce Corporation can help create a roadmap for a smooth transition. If a company is considering making a substantial expenditure to boost production, Commerce Corporation staff can focus decision-making around crucial issues. Our financial specialists can help businesses fully prepare to seek financing. With a dispassionate but encouraging set of eyes, our staff can review capital requests and pinpoint problems before a loan officer does. Whether it’s a need to define markets or secure one last permit before approaching a bank, Commerce Corporation staff can help you figure out what you need to do.