Entrepreneurial Partnerships – Paving Pathways to Success for Small Businesses

When it comes to supporting small businesses, partnerships are critical. At the College of Southern Nevada, we are proud of our latest collaboration with the City of Henderson for the Henderson Small Business Assistance Program (HSBA). Business owners selected for the HSBA Program will be paired with an NV Grow counselor who will provide technical expertise for up to 12 months. During that time, business owners will receive high-level technical assistance from skilled providers in a variety of fields, including marketing, web design, e-commerce, accounting, financing, video creation, and more. The goal is to help small businesses create a resiliency work plan that can help improve chances for entrepreneurial success while identifying project milestones.

Below is a conversation we had with NV Grow Counselor Thomas Carvalho and Lauren B. Parker, Founder of NDO Wellness. Her business was one of 10 ventures selected for the HSBA this year.

Thomas, tell us about your role with CSN and NV Grow and how you help local businesses like NDO Wellness?

Thomas Carvalho:
“I serve as one of the counselors for NV Grow, which is a State of Nevada initiative customized to help existing small businesses throughout Southern Nevada. NV Grow connects entrepreneurs to essential data, marketing and business intelligence resources to help them build capacity and produce jobs. We work with businesses that have been up and running for at least 2 years and this is very similar to the concept which the City of Henderson had adopted for the Henderson Small Business Assistance (HSBA) program which Lauren has been selected to be a part of. NV Grow is providing counselors to help businesses like hers that are seeking help to grow and thrive in the City of Henderson”.

Lauren, tell us about how your experience has been so far being part of HSBA and working with counselors like Thomas?

Lauren B. Parker:
“The experience has been eye-opening for me. I have really gained a ton of clarity working with the NV Grow counselors on how I should best use my resources moving forward. I attended one of the media training sessions that was offered and through that experience, I was able to see how my passion is working with senior citizens. So now as I look for ways to expand, I want to create more services for the older population in my community. It’s a big part of my “why” in starting my business and I am so happy to move in this direction.

Thomas, why do you think it’s so critical to have initiatives like NV Grow and HSBA in our business community?

“We do have a lot of support for small business owners here in Nevada, but there’s a special challenge for new entrepreneurs like Lauren who has to do everything on their own most of the time and wear multiple hats. When you are ready to grow and expand, there’s a whole set of challenges to face. So, it’s nice to know that there is a support system out there to help tackle the issues they may not have thought about before. Working with these small business owners has really been gratifying for me. I love it.”

Lauren, What’s your advice for other small business owners ready to pursue their dream?

“Have an open mind and stay curious. A lot of times we tend to have tunnel vision and we are only focused on one path. If we stay open minded, we are able to seize more opportunities that are available for us. Also be decisive and I am talking to myself here too. I have to learn to make decisions that are best for me and my business, because in the end, you know yourself best.