I wrote recently about my personal experience with the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Scholar program and the unique challenges and opportunities that the coronavirus pandemic brought to that experience.
I highly recommend any small business with a desire to learn and grow that business to apply for the 10,000 Small Businesses program. But before you do, you may be wondering what you can expect if you get accepted to this free, priceless program.
A great local cohort
This is a powerful component of the program. Because it’s broken into state by state cohorts, your group will have a regional connection, but they may not necessarily already be in your network. This allows for greater empathy and honesty in your group. In addition, your cohort will be broken into smaller growth groups, led by a business advisor. I’ll be keeping in touch with these people for a long time. And in fact, 88 percent of graduates report continuing to do business with each other, another benefit of the local aspect.
Lots of work
There’s a reason I called this a “mini MBA.” Classes are taught online twice a week, for three months, with monthly in-person meetings. In between classes, there are modules to work through and meetings with your groups. I found myself in the modules daily just to keep up with the work.
The coursework alone is worth all the work. It covers all the aspects of businesses, some areas you may feel strong in, others not. And the program really weaves them all together in a very holistic view. But on top of that, you’ll gain access to the Goldman Sachs and other local professionals who have endless amounts of knowledge and resources.
Your blueprint for moving forward
One of the goals throughout all the coursework is a growth plan that you create, based on a case study of your own business. This hands-on, real-world example not only keeps you engaged in the work throughout the process, but lets you graduate with something actionable.
Sixty-seven percent of those who graduate from the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Scholar program report increased revenues in the six months after graduating. And I can see why. The program is very comprehensive and really well done, leveraging local academic mainstays to provide the coursework.
The next class here in Iowa will begin this fall and the deadline to apply is June 11. So get those applications in fast. And if you have any questions about my experience, or the program, contact me anytime.