Continuing entrepreneur education for small business owners

December 10, 2018

Entrepreneurs are generally curious, driven, and have a knack for learning on the job. Passion alone can take your business far. But eventually you’re bound to bump up against your own limits. It’s possible that you need to continue to sharpen your skills to realize the full potential of your business. In fact, recognizing your weak spots early on and addressing them through ongoing education and training will prepare your business for the challenges ahead.

So where do you struggle? Do you have difficulty finding good talent, or do your eyes glaze over when your accountant asks questions? Are you having trouble managing conflict on your team, or do you need some inspiration to help you plan promotions? Here are 5 common areas entrepreneur classes cover, plus tips on how to keep your skills current with lifelong learning.

HR education for entrepreneurs

If you only have a few minutes to prepare for a business task like hiring your first employee, firing someone who isn’t working out, or learning about personnel record-keeping checking out a blog for small businesses (like Clover’s) will help answer your questions quickly. But if you have a few more minutes and want to learn the skills you’ll need as your business grows, here are a few entrepreneurial classes covering typical HR tasks.

Entrepreneurship marketing & sales education

Nothing gets a business going like a good promotion, which makes marketing and sales some of the most powerful skills entrepreneurs can learn. If you’re completely new to marketing and sales, start with the basic classes offered by the government:

If you have a little more experience, try some of these more advanced lifelong learning classes:

Business development classes for small businesses

At least once a year you’ll want to take a step back from the day-to-day business and think about your long-term strategy. Whether you do a basic business plan or a complete SWOT analysis, here are some great courses for entrepreneurs to help you get started.

Finance and accounting business education for small businesses

While apps like DAVO Sales Tax, Payroll and Quickbooks can really simplify the day-to-day accounting, it pays to have a basic understanding of finance and accounting so you can track your most important expenses and pay your taxes on time.

General training & entrepreneur classes

Customer service, boosting productivity and keeping your business secure are just a few of the skills entrepreneurs need to keep sharp. Consider taking these entrepreneur classes to better manage difficult situations.

4 more ways to beef up your entrepreneurial business education

1. Check out your local library. While not all libraries are big enough to offer services to small businesses, libraries will often partner to offer programs available for all of their patrons. For example, if you live in a large city, such as New York City, you are likely eligible to participate in any of events designed for small businesses throughout the city. Other libraries offer their patrons access to online training such as Check with your local librarian to see what you’re eligible to attend for free.

2. Find a mentor. If you’re a franchise, investigate whether there are any training or mentoring opportunities available to you. If you’re on your own, check out your local chamber of commerce to see if there are free training events or networking opportunities to help you find a mentor.

3. Associations. There are many associations such as SCORE, VISTAGE, or Startup Grind that offer opportunities to learn and network with other entrepreneurs in your area. Want more ideas? Check out this list of associations that offer resources to entrepreneurs.

4. Ask a master. Looking for specific training in your particular niche? Try finding an apprenticeship through the Department of Labor or use social media to post questions for other entrepreneurs in your area.

Don’t forget that training yourself on these tasks can be a great way to improve business and strengthen your weaknesses, but it’s not the only solution. You can also hire competent staff to complement your skillset or shore up your business with apps that make business easier. Clover’s App Market is filled with solutions to help make planning and running your business a little easier.

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