Course Description

SBDC StartSmart was developed by the University of Georgia Small Business Development Center. This year’s program is tailored to being held virtually to facilitate virtual discussion, class engagement, & mastery of content. Participation in StartSmart will also allow access to online business planning software. The program is facilitated by specially trained SBDC consultants and a long-term relationship with the SBDC and follow-up consulting is available and encouraged.

Whether you are a new business (in business 2 years or less), or are still in the planning phase, building a business takes the right tools—and a lot of hard work. SBDC StartSmart will equip you to be successful!

SBDC StartSmart helps attendees to:

• Evaluate & refine your business concept
• Improve your knowledge of business concepts
• Research markets and competition
• Develop a financial forecast to improve chances of success
• Develop a thorough, practical business plan

Course Outline

Eight modules cover critical issues for new businesses:

MODULE 1: Business Success – How do we get there?
MODULE 2: Opportunity & Solutions
MODULE 3: Marketing for Success
MODULE 4: Digital Marketing & Online Strategies
MODULE 5: Navigating Human Resources
MODULE 6: Operations & Managing by the Numbers
MODULE 7: Management with a Plan
MODULE 8: Plan, Run, Review, Revise

SBDC StartSmart at Georgia State University program includes 20 hours of instruction delivered over a period of 8 weeks. Sessions will be held once a week for 2.5 hours each. 

Learner Outcomes

Owning your own business is the American dream. Building it to withstand the test of time requires a unique set of tools. SBDC StartSmart™ provides the resources, support, and motivation to put your dream within reach.

SBDC StartSmart provides the tools to:
• Evaluate your concept and develop plans to move forward.
• Improve knowledge of business fundamentals.
• Build an infrastructure for business operations and processes.

SBDC StartSmart graduates acquire:
• An actionable business plan and access to business planning software
• Access to financial and business resources.
• A network of entrepreneurial peers and professionals


A Public Service and Outreach Unit of the University of Georgia. Funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All programs of the UGA SBDC are open to the public on a non-discriminatory basis. Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance.


"I cannot thank you enough for the stellar StartSmart program. This experience has transformed the way I do business, both now and in the future.” I look forward to following up with my SBDC Consultant to build on this program and continue to strengthen my business plan and practices."



SBDC Virtual StartSmart Application Georgia State
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