As a business advisor, I was often asked, “What is the best investment that I can make for my small business?” My answer was almost always the same. I would usually answer, “Business classes are the most important investment that you can make for your small business.”
Why College Courses
When talking about the best investment that you could make in your small business, you have to think about investing two things. You need to talk about investing money, and investing time. College courses cost money, and take time to complete but can open new doors for your company that you never knew were possible.
For Those that Did Not Take Business in College
If you did not take business classes in college, there is a world of information that you could learn and incorporate into your small business. By taking a few college business classes, you are making the best investment into your small business as possible because you have a chance of learning basic skills that you never knew that you needed.
You will learn the basics like marketing, product placement, accounting, scheduling, and many of the everyday aspects that a business owner needs to know to keep a business going. Granted, you may have learned a lot about these topics over a long career with a small business, but if you could spend some money and time to learn a few aspects that could make your job smoother, and more profitable, wouldn’t you consider that to be the best investment that you could make for your small business?
For Those that Took Business Courses in College
Even if you took college business courses in college, it is always good to have a refresher. There might be aspects that you find that you need to pay closer attention to that would directly relate with what your company is going through at the time. You also might get a new professor that might give you a different perspective than you had before. Refreshment, review, and a new outlook are three things that make taking college business courses the best investment that you could make for your small business.
Cost vs. Value
When discussing the best investment that you could make for your small business, you have to discuss the overall cost vs. the overall value. Take my services as a business advisor for example. Over a two week period, I would go into a business and pay attention to all of the operations for one week. At the end of the week, I would make my suggestions to the owner about what needed to be changed, and how to change it. The second week I would spend training the workers and the owners on the best way to perform their jobs.
One month later, I would go back for a few days to observe to make sure that none of the old bad habits had come back. If need be, I would retrain again to break these habits. I would return again after a few months. About 80% of what I would teach workers could be found right in the middle of college business textbooks.
Essentially, if we go with the average cost of a community college class, a business owner would have to take six college courses to equal what I would make during my initial two weeks with the company. Another class would be taken after that to equal my fee for my revisits. Now, of these two, which do you think would be the best investment that you could make for your small business?