5 Organizations Supporting Small Businesses

Small businesses help strengthen economies and give people a chance to bring their unique skills to the marketplace. But being an entrepreneur is difficult, and sometimes businesses need a little support. The organizations listed here work to create jobs, assist small businesses, and give people the tools they need to become financially independent. This video was made with Ezvid Wikimaker.

Groups That Help Entrepreneurs & Small Businesses

Organization Headquarters Location Mission
Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center San Francisco, CA Empower and increase the entrepreneurial capacities of socially and economically diverse women and men, and thereby strengthen communities through the creation of sustainable new businesses, new jobs, and the promotion of financial self-sufficiency
Queens Economic Development Corporation Kew Gardens, NY Create and retain jobs through programming that grows neighborhoods, assists small businesses, and promotes tourism and business development
Latino Economic Development Center Washington, DC Drive the economic and social advancement of low- to moderate-income Latinos and other DC area residents by equipping them with the skills and tools to achieve financial independence and become leaders in their communities
Root Capital Cambridge, MA Invest in the growth of agricultural enterprises so they become engines of impact that transform rural communities
SCORE Herndon, VA Foster vibrant small business communities through mentoring and education

U.S. Small Business Statistics

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, as of 2018

  • There are 30.2 million small businesses in the United States
  • These make up 99.9% of all U.S. businesses
  • They employ 58.9 million people
  • These make up 47.5% of all U.S. employees
  • Of the 294,834 U.S. companies that exported goods in 2015, 97.6% were small firms
  • Pennsylvania is home to 1.0 million small businesses, which employ 2.5 million people

Men & Women In The Workforce

The percentage of men & women in the civilian labor force over time, according to the U.S. Department of Labor

Year Women Men
1950 29.6% 70.4%
1960 33.4% 66.6%
1970 38.1% 61.9%
1980 42.5% 57.5%
1990 45.2% 54.8%
2000 46.5% 53.5%
2010 46.7% 53.3%

5 Tips for New Business Owners

  1. Make sure your business is insured.
  2. Stay on top of your finances before tax day comes around.
  3. Learn how to use hashtags and other social media tools.
  4. Have a nice-looking, high-quality logo for your company.
  5. Keep all of your files well organized.

Priceless Advice from 50 Successful Entrepreneurs

In Depth

Starting a small business can be extremely daunting. Navigating the moving parts of marketing, manufacturing and accounting, just to name a few, can feel overwhelming. Fortunately, there are numerous organizations with myriad resources that provide expert advice and support to entrepreneurs of all levels. In no particular order, here is a list of five non-profit organizations that are providing new and established small business owners with the tools they need for success.

Coming in at #1 is Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center, which helps thousands of individuals in the Bay Area achieve personal, financial, and social transformation through the power of small business. Its 12-Week Business Planning Class helps students develop their business plans with confidence. This intensive course focuses on creating a practical and effective business plan, one of the most useful documents an entrepreneur will ever use. The curriculum covers all aspects of startup and expansion, including industry trend analysis, operations, and financial projections and sales assumptions.

In partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration, Renaissance's Women's Business Center, provides training, access to capital and markets, and support strategies specifically designed to help emerging and established women entrepreneurs ensure the successful growth of their burgeoning enterprise. If you are an aspiring entrepreneur, you can attend one of its Business Planning or Lean Startup classes, or schedule a free one-on-one consultation with one of its financial experts.

If you are an aspiring entrepreneur, you can attend one of its Business Planning or Lean Startup classes, or schedule a free one-on-one consultation with one of its financial experts.

At #2 is the Queens Economic Development Corporation in New York City, which creates and retains jobs through programming that assists small businesses and promotes tourism and economic development. Since 1977, it has worked with scores of neighborhoods to revitalize their commercial districts by creating commerce organizations and establishing trade improvement districts. A signature program of the organization is its StartUP! Business Competition, which focuses on driving innovation, providing entrepreneurship education, one-on-one start-up assistance, mentoring, and $10K seed funding.

Its Entrepreneurship Assistance Center offers a comprehensive, hands-on training course targeted to new and existing business owners. It is specifically designed to minimize the risk and maximize the potential success of starting or expanding a new venture. The primary goal of the class is to complete a fully vetted business plan. Participants can also access the Alumni Network, which serves as both a support system, and an avenue for business development. Budding entrepreneurs can attend events in the organization's Power Networking Series or enter their company into The StartUP! Business Competition.

Entering the list at #3 is the Latino Economic Development Center, which equips Latinos and other underserved Washington, DC and Baltimore area residents with the skills and financial tools to create a better future for their families and communities. Program participants learn how to build their long-term financial security by starting or expanding small businesses. Immigrant, refugee, and other marginalized women seeking entrepreneurial opportunities can work with the center's Empowered Women International initiative. It provides training, mentoring, workshops, and support services, teaching the basics of how to develop, manage, and grow a business.

Program participants learn how to build their long-term financial security by starting or expanding small businesses.

Aspiring small business owners can also apply for The Entrepreneurs of Color Fund, a multimillion dollar effort designed to support minority-owned businesses by providing them with access to capital and advice. The grant aims to help low-income residents prosper in order to achieve financial independence. The funds can be used toward such items as vehicles and equipment, working capital, and expansion. Have a business idea? Submit an application to the organization's Business Advice program, which can review or help you develop a business plan, or provide information on financing options.

At #4 on the list is Root Capital, which provides loans and training to help agricultural businesses grow during good times and withstand challenges. To help growth over the long-term, it mixes financing with highly-customized training to strengthen financial management, governance, and agronomic capacity. Its impact areas include food security, women, and the environment. Through its Gender Equity Grants, it finances gender-inclusive agricultural businesses that actively create jobs and opportunities for women. It trains female leaders, managers, support staff, and farmers in key financial and agricultural skills.

Through its Environmental Impact focus, much of its lending is concentrated in biodiversity hotspots, or regions threatened by habitat loss and other human interventions. It provides loans for investment in sustainable practices such as composting and organic production designed to boost revenue while fortifying farmers against climate shocks. Businesses are trained to confront urgent environmental challenges, like disease outbreaks or deforestation. If your enterprise operates within one of Root Capital's impact areas, you can apply for a loan, or take advantage of its Advisory Services via Customized Training and Centralized Workshops.

Businesses are trained to confront urgent environmental challenges, like disease outbreaks or deforestation.

Finishing up the list at #5 is SCORE, the nation's largest network of volunteer expert mentors dedicated to helping small businesses launch, grow, and achieve their goals. It offers free, live, and recorded webinars, and interactive courses on demand. Its online library is full of complimentary business templates, checklists, infographics, and videos covering such vital topics as franchising, digital marketing trends, and procuring federal contracts. The Business Learning Center provides aspiring and existing small business owners the strategies and tactics needed to fill the gap between the high-level content found online and the personalized expertise of a mentor.

SCORE'S mentors provide confidential business advice through its vast network of volunteer experts. Mentoring services are free, regardless of how often they are utilized, and are available via email, video chat or face-to-face via local chapters. Research shows that small business owners who receive three or more hours of mentoring report higher revenues and increased growth. You can register for a free weekly online webinar for entreprenurial advice or be matched with a mentor by completing a short survey.