Striking out on your own to start, and then keep up, a small business can be an exhilarating and a daunting task. It’s not just your financial investment, it’s you – your passion, your pride, your life. While working long hours to keep the doors open, it can be easy to feel as though you're the only struggling entrepreneur. But you're not -- and help is available and free, as close as your local library.
The Johnson County Public Library is more than four buildings with books. The library is a treasure trove of resources to help you learn to market your business, build your skills in office software, navigate legal forms, and find the resources that will help your business thrive. Here are five resources for entrepreneurs and small business owners that are available 24/7 with your JCPL library card:
- AtoZdatabasesis an essential tool for your next marketing campaign. Don’t start out buying lists you’re your next mailing, this database will help you reach homeowners, as well as consumers, by location, income, home value and interest. Establish yourself as a local resource, advertise your products or invite your community to your business by using this database to create a mailing list.
- Gale Coursesoffer a wide range of highly interactive courses led by expert instructors that run for six weeks at no cost. These courses offer easy access to courses on business communication, entrepreneurship, human resources, management, manufacturing, marketing and even languages like Speed Spanish! Brush up on your tech (or learn from scratch) with courses on software, computer applications, web design and programming, that you can take from your office, home or corner coffee shop…on your schedule. Check out Gale’s small business resource center – Gale Business Entrepreneurship – that includes sample business plans and how-to guides on starting, financing or managing your small business.
- Indiana Legal Formsincludes searchable and printable forms for bankruptcy, divorce, name change, power of attorney, real estate, wills and more. This resource doesn’t replace a licensed attorney, but it can get your started on what you need to fill in and file before you invest in professional services.
4. Lynda.comis another online learning option that provides access to over 130,000 professionally produced video tutorials in Microsoft Office, Photoshop, web design, business, marketing and much more.
5. Hoopla offers so much more than entertainment. Hoopla features thousands of business and economic eBooks and e-audioBooks both online and in the hoopla app. Read up on the hottest trends and learn from the experts wherever, whenever.
Your public library has the resources and the helpful and knowledgeable staff to help you with any of these resources as well as assistance with free scanning, faxing and notary services, booking meeting rooms, computer and printing assistance and more. Your library card is the business resource that invests in YOU. Visit your local branch or learn more at pageafterpage.org.