[CG:1_LWR3RD\12\Sonya Smith \Business Owner\\]
[CG:1_LWR3RD\26\Devon Turkoski\Mixson Business Center, Project Manager\\]
[CG:1_LWR3RD\1:00\Steve Turkoski\Dothan Area Chamber of Commerce, Project Manager\\]
COMING UP WITH AN IDEA ABOUT A BUSINESS YOU THINK WOULD BE A SUCCESS IS THE EASY PART.
IT'S HOW TO PUT ALL THE PIECES OF THE PUZZLE TOGETHER THAT CAN GET A LITTLE CONFUSING.
LIKE MANY PEOPLE WHO VENTURE OUT TO START THEIR OWN BUSINESS...SONYA SMITH HAD A NUMBER OF QUESTIONS.
(Sonya) "I had all the basic questions, well, can we maintain office space, what if there's a lot of maintained, how will I know how to pick out a building."
SHE WAS SOON SET AT EASE ONCE LEARNING ABOUT THE MIXON BUSINESS CENTER IN DOTHAN.
IN FACT, IT CUT HER OVERHEAD COST BY ABOUT 50 PERCENT.
(Devon) "We specialize in providing affordable office space in a professional setting."
DESIGNED AS A BUSINESS "INCUBATOR", THE MIXON BUSINESS CENTER HOLDS 17 OFFICE SPACES.
THEY RANGE IN VARIOUS SIZES AND PROVIDE ENTREPENEURES WITH ALL THEY NEED TO RUN THEIR BUSINESS.
(Devon) "We provide phones, phone lines, you get your own extension, we have high speed internet."
DEVON TURKOSKI SAYS AN EIGHTY SQUARE FOOT ROOM WILL RUN YOU A FLAT RATE OF 350-DOLLARS A MONTH.
BUT BEFORE YOU DECIDE TO SET UP SHOP...THERE ARE THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW.
(Steve) "You want to have a business plan and that usually starts with an idea, a vision, something that you have a passion about and from that point you do some research."
SO...WHERE DO YOU FIND THE INFORMATION YOU'RE LOOKING FOR?
STEVE TURKOSKI WITH THE DOTHAN AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE SAYS YOU CAN FIND IT ALL AT THE CHAMBER.
(Steve) "Many people don't know about the Mixon Business Center, many people don't know about the resource room that we're standing in, many people don't know that we have an on-line small business handbook that's free to them and they don't know about the free counseling."
WITH ABOUT A 30 PERCENT INCREASE IN THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE TAKING THEIR CAREER INTO THEIR OWN HANDS...IT CAN BE COMPETETIVE.
(Devon) "How many people are doing the same thing you want to do, what is the call for it in this area."
TURKOSKI SAYS IT'S SMART TO HAVE A FINANCIAL CUSHION WHEN YOU BEGIN...ABOUT TWO YEARS WORTH.
(Steve) "You want to have enough to carry yourself through the lean times which are going to be the beginning so I would say you would want to have the money on hand or the funds available."
WHILE IT MAY BE TOUGH AT FIRST...MANY SAY THE OUTCOME SURPASSES THE CHALLENGES.
(Devon) "Of all the ones that do fail, you wouldn't have the success stories without the ones that fail."
AS FAR AS GRANTS, TURKOSKI SAYS THERE ARE NO PERSONAL BUSINESS GRANTS AVAILABLE...HOWEVER THERE ARE GRANTS THAT FUND PROGRAMS TO HELP BEGINNING BUSINESS OWNERS....
IF YOU WOULD LIKE MORE INFORMATION ON HOW TO START YOUR BUSINESS YOU CAN GO TO THE DOTHAN AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE FOR MORE INFORMATION.