Helping Entrepreneur’s Dreams Come True in Southwest Louisiana

Helping Entrepreneur’s Dreams Come True in Southwest Louisiana

Southwest Louisiana Economic Development Alliance
Erin Davison (far left of photo), program facilitator, and David Conner (far right of photo), Vice President of Economic Development, stands with graduates of the Kaufman FastTrac NewVenture Program.
Photo courtesy of the Southwest Louisiana Economic Development Alliance

Many entrepreneurs will tell you that there is nothing more satisfying than seeing their dream of owning a business turn into a reality. Lake area residents who do have a dream of opening their own business may have many questions about how to get started. Fortunately the Southwest Louisiana Economic Development Alliance has a program for aspiring entrepreneurs to achieve that dream.

The Kaufman FastTrac NewVenture program covers a variety of topics that every entrepreneur needs to know such as: identifying and meeting market needs, networking with business professionals, building a business plan, and much more. Erin Davison, program facilitator, described some of the benefits that participants receive, “The FastTrac NewVenture class is the perfect starting point for turning your dream into a reality. You can receive valuable tools for writing and implementing your business plan in 10 weeks. Plus, networking with potential business investors in one location. It is a Win-Win for grabbing the American dream.”

Small business is often described as the backbone of the American economy. In a interview with David Conner, Vice President of Economic Development for the Southwest Louisiana Economic Development Alliance, he explained that small business also plays a pivotal role in our local economy, “A vibrant and diversified small business economy can sustain a community during down turns and grow the economy in prosperous times.”

Those who are considering opening a small business in Southwest Louisiana may be asking if this is the right time to do it. Conner had an optimistic answer to that question, “We are probably in the best period of opportunities for small business that we have seen in recent history and we may not see these kinds of opportunities again for decades. It is important to note that because of the nature and magnitude of our industrial growth, opportunities for small business may extend for several years.”

“We brought the Fasttrack program to Southwest Louisiana in 2012. We have conducted four classes and about forty people have completed the program,” says Conner. Brenda Hill, Editor-in-Chief of The Voice of Southwest Louisiana, is one of the graduates and recommends the program to individuals interested in opening a small business. “Kaufman FastTrac helped me define entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial traits. By defining these God-given abilities in me, I was able to move forward with passionate desire to succeed and successfully manage entrepreneurial risks in business. I would encourage all individuals, with a passion and desire to succeed in this historical moment of growth and expansion in SWLA, to register for this class, ASAP. Timing is of the essence,” Hill said.

The next session will take place on Monday nights from 5:45 p.m. to 8:45 p.m. beginning March 9th 2015; the registration deadline is February 23rd 2015. For more information about the Kaufman FastTrack New Venture Program and how to register contact the Southwest Louisiana Economic Development Alliance at (337) 433-3632.