by Cindy Bates
Small businesses account for 55 percent of employment in the US, according to the Small Business Administration. And the 28 million small business owners and entrepreneurs in the US are at the forefront of innovation, fueling growth and creating jobs across the nation. That’s something I’m looking forward to celebrating during the 2017 National Entrepreneurship Week (NEW).
On Feb. 20, we kick off a full week of free workshops, content, webcasts, events and more from a large community of supporters including: Wix, Yelp, LinkedIn, Dun & Bradstreet, and many more.
A calendar of our most highly-anticipated activities can be found below, but be sure to check www.entrepreneurshipweek.com for regular updates, resources, exciting new content and special offers throughout the week. Join in the conversation on Twitter by following #WININBIZ and tweet me @Cindy_Bates to share how your business is getting involved in National Entrepreneurship Week.
Supporting the entrepreneur community has an element of social good with the official National Entrepreneurship Week bracelet designed by Ariela Suster, founder and CEO of Sequence. Purchasing the bracelet helps disrupt the sequence of violence that limits at-risk youth in Ariela’s home country of El-Salvador. To learn more and order your own bracelet, click here.
We encourage you to boost your business productivity by taking advantage of the specials and discounts offered by many of our National Entrepreneurship Week supporters. For example, Microsoft is offering 10 percent off select Surface and Windows 10 Pro devices during National Entrepreneurship Week; to find out more visit your local Microsoft Store from Feb 20-26.
National Entrepreneurship Week, February 20-26
Monday, February 20
Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Women in Business: Women-owned businesses account for nearly $1.4 trillion in revenue, and female entrepreneurs employ nearly 7.9 million people in the U.S.
Throughout the week, all Microsoft Store locations are offering a variety of in-person events and resources, including panels, networking, productivity tips and more.
12 p.m. ET – Join a Twitter chat with Anita Campbell, CEO of Small Business Trends
Don’t miss out on a chance to ask questions and share insights during a fun and fast-paced Twitter chat using #WININBIZ.
Tuesday, February 21
Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Made in the USA: In today’s economic climate, American-made products resonate most with consumers. In fact, 80 percent of consumers prefer to pay more for a product if it means supporting American jobs.
10 a.m. ET – Watch the kickoff event
National Entrepreneurship Week officially kicks off with a live broadcast event in New York City. Scott Duffy will emcee the event, and speakers include representatives from major corporations including Microsoft, Wix, Square, Yelp, and others. (Webcast will stream directly from main website.)
6 p.m. ET – Join Facebook Live interview from the Wix Lounge
As a part of National Entrepreneurship Week, I’ll be participating in a discussion on how you can transform your business with modern technology. Hear tips and tricks for launching your company and see the latest affordable tech tools from Microsoft and Wix to better connect with your customers.
Wednesday, February 22
Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Youthpreneurs: Children today were born with technology and the world, by extension, at their fingertips. Naturally, these youthpreneurs are some of the most talented and creative business minds in the world.
12 p.m. ET – Free webinar: Learn the power of referral marketing
Tapping into your existing customer base could be the key to new business growth. On the next episode of Office Small Business Academy, learn about the power of referral marketing, and how to design a program that works for your business.
On-demand – Free demo: YourInterprise CloudShip Business Operations Workshop
Try this on-demand, interactive, 30-day demo of the Microsoft cloud business operations vehicles with previews of the new windows 10 devices (Cloudships) for 2017. All attendees who sign up for the 30-day workshop will have a chance to win a free one-year subscription to Office 365 home for five users!
Thursday, February 23
Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Boomerprenuers: According to a Kauffman Foundation study, the baby boomer generation is twice as likely to enter entrepreneurship than millennials. And due to their experience, they also are the age group most likely to succeed.
1 p.m. ET – Free webcast: 3 tips for remaking your online professional presence
Join experts from Microsoft and Yelp to learn more about the tools experts use to boost their businesses, such as how to:
- Create a complete Yelp profile to boost your SEO and attract more customers
- Be more professional in your customer interactions using customized email and document templates created in Office 365
- Enable your customers to book online appointments directly with you using Microsoft Bookings
Bringing together women entrepreneurs from all walks of life, this event will highlight the triumphs and tribulations women-owned small businesses face. Ramon Ray of Smart Hustle Magazine will moderate a panel of talented small business owners and deliver actionable tips to get your business off the ground and growing.
Friday, February 24
Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Innovation: With thousands of new companies being launched every day, startups can’t afford to rest on their laurels and take the chance to not experiment or innovate. They must keep their eyes and ears firmly on what is happening around you in the market and keep a check on what your competitors are doing.
2:30 p.m. ET – CreativeLive webcast
Tune in for an exciting webcast with Scott Duffy, author and entrepreneurship expert and Chase Jarvis, director, artist, innovator, entrepreneur and co-founder of CreativeLIVE, a streaming education website offering over 1,500 courses on subjects such as entrepreneurship, photography, and video. Chase and Scott will be joined by more than a dozen influential entrepreneurs including Naveen Jain, T.A. McAnn, JJ Ramberg, Greg Reid, Alex Brown and Brian Smith.
8 a.m. ET [Atlanta area] – Get the Microsoft Office 365 Business Advantage
Join us for an event designed especially for budding entrepreneurs and early stage start-ups. You will enjoy:
- A keynote by Scott Duffy, a best-selling author, entrepreneur and brand ambassador
- Local Microsoft Partner Clair Dohn from NetWeb Computer Consulting who will be talking about the Microsoft Office 365 Business Advantage for Small Businesses
- An opportunity to network with other local startups and entrepreneurs and win prizes
After a busy week, make sure to grab your favorite cup of coffee and settle in Saturday morning to watch the latest episode of our video podcast series – Business & Burgers – or Hatched, a nationally syndicated TV show connecting emerging brands with successful mentors and once-in-a-lifetime opportunities.
I hope you’ll end the week inspired and ready to take on new challenges to start or grow your business.