2022 The Bottom Line Webinar Series

SBA and Small Business Majority brought together experts to introduce entrepreneurs to timely tools and resources with a focus on addressing economic challenges

This fall, The Bottom Line webinar series has brought together U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) officials, small business advocates and subject matter experts for discussions on how to address the economic challenges facing small businesses today. Through these webinars, members of the small business community have been connected to tools and resources for long-term, stable growth. 

Following are summaries, key takeaways, and links to on-demand recorded videos for each webinar so far. 

Finding Solutions and Navigating Supply Chain Delays 

On September 6, the Associate Administrator for the Office of Entrepreneurial Development at the SBA, Mark Madrid, moderated the first The Bottom Line webinar on “Finding Solutions and Navigating Supply Chain Delays.” Speakers were Greg Britton, Chief Executive Officer at the Florida Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network and Zachary Davis, member of the Small Business Majority National Council and co-owner of The Glass Jar in Santa Cruz, Calif.

Small business owners continue to navigate the impact of supply chain issues. In fact, a recent Small Business Majority poll found that 60% of small businesses feel impacted by disruptions to their supply chain. This webinar shared tips on how to manage supply chain delays, lower costs and create more operational efficiency.

Some key takeaways from this webinar include:

  • Build up inventory of high-risk items. Buy more inventory of high risk items, while making sure to not buy too much inventory that is low risk–you don’t want to eat up your cash flow.

  • Build stronger relationships with your suppliers. Supply chain is a network. Building stronger ties with your suppliers will make it easier to get your inventory to your business, on time.

  • Communicate with customers. Share continued updates on supply delays and availability through your website, social media, in-store signage.

Watch Finding Solutions and Navigating Supply Chain Delays on-demand here.

How to Combat Inflation as a Small Business Owner 

How to Combat Inflation as a Small Business Owner” was recorded on September 23 with speakers Veronica Pugin, Senior Advisor for the Office of Capital Access at the SBA, Gary Cunningham, President and CEO of Prosperity Now, and Stephanie DeVane, Vice President of Entrepreneurship & Business Development at the National Urban League. 

89% of small business owners are concerned about the impact of inflation on their business. This webinar shared funding opportunities available to small businesses and new and existing resources to tackle inflation. 

Some key takeaways from this webinar include: 

  • Watch the interest on your loans. Variable interest in particular can cause immense pressure on your business during these times. Do your due diligence to avoid getting trapped by predatory lenders in the future.

  • Have your documentation in place. Be ready to talk about your numbers. Have tax documents and organized cash flow at the ready. 

  • Seek out technical help. Resource centers such as your local SBDC can help you plan for the cyclical booms and busts in our economy. 

Watch How to Combat Inflation as a Small Business Owner on-demand here

How to Be Capital Ready in an Expanding Market 

How to Be Capital Ready in an Expanding Market” was recorded on October 6 with speaker Defina Williams, Executive Vice President of External Affairs at the Opportunity Finance Network. 

According to our research, 75% of small business owners face challenges in obtaining capital. This webinar shared tips on how to prepare yourself for your first or even your fifth loan to ensure you’re utilizing your time and money properly. 

Some key takeaways from this webinar include: 

  • Consider non-traditional capital. Commercial lenders are not always the best option for your business. Community Development Financial Institution Funds (CDFIs) serve businesses that typically have trouble accessing capital. Locate your local CDFI here.

  • Have your documents in order. Lenders look at more than credit scores. Organize and compile important documents and be ready to speak to the numbers. 

  • Do due diligence on your lender. This helps you know if you meet a lender’s criteria and focus. Ask questions such as, “have you worked with businesses like mine before?”

Watch How to Be Capital Ready in an Expanding Market on-demand here.

How to Become Cybersecure and Resilient for Your Small Business 

On October 20, Regional Administrator, Rocky Mountain Region for the SBA, Aikta Marcoulier and CEO and Founder of the National Cybersecurity Society, Mary Ellen Seale spoke at the “How to Become Cybersecure and Resilient for Your Small Business” webinar. 

As business owners continue to adapt to the ever changing landscape of operating a business, they can be exposed to cyberattacks and other scams that put their success at risk. In fact, 43% of all cyberattacks are aimed at small businesses. This webinar shared tips on how to protect your business against cybersecurity threats. 

Some key takeaways from this webinar include: 

  • Make sure you have a cybersecurity plan in place. A cyberattack on your business isn’t a question of if, but when. Be prepared by implementing employee training and knowing your crisis management strategy. 

  • Secure passwords are essential. Most cybersecurity breaches are caused by human error. Use tools such as two-factor authentication and password managers to avoid this.

  • Know your business's cyber-weakness. Work with your local SCORE or SBDC organization, or the National Cybersecurity Society to identify where your business’s greatest risks are so you can prepare for them.

Watch How to Become Cybersecure and Resilient for Your Small Business on-demand here.

Operational Efficiency and Why Your Small Business Needs It 

On November 3, President and CEO of the California Capital Financial Development Corporation, Deborah Lowe Muramoto, and Small Business Coach for Operation Hope Georgia, Linden Jackson spoke on the “Operational Efficiency and Why Your Small Business Needs It” webinar. 

Ensuring that all components of your business are running smoothly can increase your ability to offer quality service to your customers while reinforcing your bottom line. This webinar offered tips on how to save yourself time and money through operational efficiency. 

Some key takeaways from this webinar include: 

  • Your business plan is a living document. To be efficient, your business plan needs to grow and change as your business does. Examine and rework your business plan often. 

  • Diversify your funding sources. CDFIs can offer an alternative source of funding for small businesses that wouldn’t qualify for traditional funding, offering you the capital needed to become more operationally efficient.  

  • Plan for setbacks. Connect with organizations like Operation Hope for pre-disaster planning. 

Watch Operational Efficiency and Why Your Small Business Needs It on-demand here

How to Plan for and Implement Revenue Growth 

On November 17, the Associate Administrator for the Office of Small Business Development Centers at the Small Business Administration (SBA), Bruce Purdy, moderated the sixth The Bottom Line webinar on “How to Plan for and Implement Revenue Growth.” Speakers were the SVP of Strategic Partnerships at Lendistry, Janet Perez Shensky, and the CEO of the Association of Women’s Business Centers, Corinne Hodges. 

It’s every business owner’s goal to grow. This webinar explored tips to diversifying and maximizing your revenue streams to improve your bottom line. 

Some key takeaways from this webinar include: 

  • Know what capital is a fit for your business at your stage. Inventory might require short-term capital, equipment investments require longer-term capital. When you consider expanding, know what type you’ll need. 

  • Seek out technical assistance. Your local SBDC, Women's Business Center, Veteran Business Center etc., can help you with free and specific assistance to grow your business’ revenue. 

Watch How to Plan for and Implement Revenue Growth on-demand here

The last Bottom Line webinar for 2022 – “Navigating Digitization as a Small Business Owner” – featured moderator Mark Madrid, speakers Mike Daniel, Regional Director, California Small Business Development Center - CSU Fullerton - Orange County Inland Empire Regional Center; and Tolithia Kornweibel, CRO, Gusto. Watch on-demand here

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