Friday, January 22, 2010

The Entrepreneurial Option

During tough economic times, innovation doesn’t take a vacation. True entrepreneurs are able to locate opportunities that others requiring safety and securing would never consider. The flipside of this is that during periods of economic vitality, money can often hide problems, and even obscure opportunities.

This past Tuesday, the Lewiston CareerCenter hosted yet another monthly Industry Information Tuesday. As has been our format for the past several months, an energetic and experienced panel was recruited, with the topic being, pursuing self-employment, entrepreneurship, and the pros and cons of starting your own business.

Panelists included an enthusiastic and successful local businessperson, Patti Gagne, of the Patti Gagne Agency, Inc., affiliated with Allstate Insurance, as well as Dante Vespignani, from The Entrepreneur’s Source, a business and franchise coach with a wealth of business and franchise experience. Another innovative local small businessperson, Barbara Lauze, spoke about the challenges and rewards of her home-based business, The Basket Case, which specializes in creative gift-giving solutions.

Rounding out our panel were two experienced business counselors, Rose Kreps, from AVCOG, who provides business services out of the agency’s Small Business Development Center, and John Sinclair, from Costal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI), another business resource similar to AVCOG/SBDC, providing one-on-one business consultation that’s tailored to meet the needs of the business owner, as well as training and workshops offered on a range of business issues.

A discussion about the qualities inherent in entrpreneurs--desire, positivity, commitment, patience and persistence--dovetailed nicely with an amazing resevoir of real life experiences represented by the members of our panel.

The 20 individuals attending, interested in exploring their options, got a chance to talk about their business ideas, ask questions, and hear about the realities faced in starting a business or accessing a franchise opportunity, and requirements and steps that entrepreneurs and small business people take to ensure success.

The Lewiston CareerCenter hosts Industry Information Tuesdays every month. The next one will be February 23 and focused on opportunities in construction.

For more information about how you can participate in one of these Tuesday events, contact the Lewiston CareerCenter at 753-9001.

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