Yesterday I attended an Advisory Committee Meeting for the local Business Development Center office (also known to many as the SBDC office), and although I have been working with them for the last 20 months, I gained a deeper appreciation and respect for what they do day in and day out.

In the last 9 months, the Lane Community College Business Development Center has helped spawn over 10 new businesses, create 218 new jobs, and retain 91 jobs in Lane County. They did all of this while juggling budget cuts and employee lay-offs in a slowing Oregon economy. I was impressed. And these numbers might be low (due to variances in reporting, varying definitions of “new business”, etc) which is even more impressive. I just wonder if those in the community truly realize what their Business Development Center (BDC) can offer them.

Clearly, with numbers like the above, many entrepreneurs take advantage of the resources the BDC provides, but just think of how many more new businesses or jobs we could have in Lane County if more people took advantage of their services and resources. I won’t do the BDC justice with listing all the resources and services they offer, but with free counseling services, workshops and training on business planning, financial plans, marketing, etc, and an abundant library of books, software and brochures, how can a local business, especially an early-stage entrepreneur or a start-up, not utilize the BDC?

I would highly recommend that any entrepreneur who is looking for advice, assistance, resources and success check out what his/her local BDC office has to offer. Take advantage of what you may not even know is right in your backyard!


Kristen Langham
Marketing Manager
Palo Alto Software, Inc.