Questions & Answers
Question: What is the purpose of a Small Business Incubator?
Answer: The purpose of a small business incubator should be to help individuals (young & old), families, groups, and organizations achieve their life and financial goals by enabling them to open and manage a small business that is based upon what they enjoy or their current skill sets.
A small business incubator can help a new business get started and off of the ground, or it can help an existing business attain a new level of growth, productivity, or success.
At the Atlanta Small Business Incubator, we enable our clients to achieve their life, financial, and career goals by providing them with the tools, resources, and skills needed to open, manage and sustain a small business operation of their own. We allow individuals, groups, and families to gain financial freedom and independence and to generate consistent revenue on a regular basis through business ownership.
Question: Why should I come to a small business incubator?
Answer: A small business incubator should provide you with the foundation, tools, and concepts that you need to create a small business and make it successful. I created the Atlanta Small Business Incubator to help others benefit from the mistakes that I made when I opened my 1st small business in 2016 and 2019, businesses which are flourishing today after I learned from the marketplace and took specific, strategic steps to align my practices with current trends and market forces.
Your small business should be set up in a way that you’re not missing out on thousands of dollars each year, hundreds of potential customers, and dozens of opportunities to beat out your competitors due to basic foundational, conceptual, and market-based mistakes and miscalculations. A small business incubator helps you to build your business with a solid, firm foundation.
Question: What do I gain from becoming a small business owner?
Answer: Flexible work hours, control over your career, financial freedom, career independence, creative freedom and opportunities, increased pay, and the ability to help shape the world that we live in.
Question: Why did you create the Atlanta Small Business Incubator?
Answer: I created and opened the Atlanta Small Business Incubator [ASBI] because I realized that many of my holistic mental health, self-improvement, and dietary and weight loss clients were asking for my assistance to start their own small business, open a consulting firm, start a business that they could work on during the weekends, or to grow and/or expand a small business that they had already created. Because of the current unstable and quickly changing economic state and workplace status, it is becoming increasingly difficult to simply have a single employer or a single revenue source.
In today’s workplace economy, currently called “The Great Resignation”, American employees are departing the workplace in droves (10s of millions in the last few months) because their jobs are becoming more complicated and more demanding, their personal expenses are going up because of inflation, and their wages and benefits aren’t increasing. Many workers have had it (i.e., are fed up with the status quo). Lots of workers don’t like how their workplace operates or how their bosses and supervisors treat them.
Many employees don’t appreciate the ways that other employees are favored or promoted over them unfairly. And many workers quite simply don’t enjoy what they are (or were) doing anyway. And then there’s the COVID19 Pandemic and all that it brings with it.
Question: What is the “Great Resignation?”
Answer: Because of the current unstable and quickly changing economic state and workplace status, it is becoming increasingly difficult to simply have a single employer or a single revenue source. In today’s workplace economy, currently called “The Great Resignation”, American employees are departing the workplace in droves (10s of millions in the last few months) because their jobs are becoming more complicated and more demanding, their personal expenses are going up because of inflation, and their wages and benefits aren’t increasing. And many workers have had it. Lots of workers don’t like how their workplace operates or how their bosses and supervisors treat them. They don’t appreciate the ways that other employees are favored or promoted over them unfairly. And many workers quite simply don’t enjoy what they are (or were) doing anyway…
And then there’s the COVID19 Pandemic and all that it brings with it. And there’s always the possibility that another event (inflation, an economic recession or depression, another pandemic, etc.) may negatively impact employees all over again.
According to NPR, 4.3 million Americans, or 2.9% of the entire US workforce, quit their jobs in August of 2021. That was a record-breaking month, piggybacking on previous record months. “The Great Resignation” has led tens of millions of working Americans to quit their jobs and search for another position, change career paths or create their own small businesses.
People who have left their jobs already or who are contemplating a change in employment essentially have 2 broad choices: (1) Continue to work for someone else and make them wealthier or richer (2) Create your own small business and build generational wealth while working for yourself doing something that you enjoy or even love.
These days, more and more people are taking their labor, talents, skills, and abilities back into their own hands and becoming small business owners. Because of the current economic state, the current workplace state of uncertainty, and the ongoing COVID19 Worldwide Pandemic, you have a unique opportunity right now to take back control of your financial circumstances, your earning power, and your time and work schedule. Don’t miss out!
Question: What resources in Georgia do you recommend to entrepreneurs just getting started (grants, programs, organizations, books, videos, etc.)?
Answer (Part 1):
Interestingly enough, a young man from Canada phoned my office on Tuesday (2 days ago) inquiring about my services for startups and new businesses. In his case, he invented a new accessory (add-on) to make ladders safer (i.e., to prevent falls, stumbles, missteps, and accidents), which I found inspiring and innovative. In his case, the product is launching soon (according to him), and he stated that he wants to attend a conference for startups, innovation, incubation, and activation in the city of Atlanta this summer, and he is in need of a US sponsor, including one that provides office/development space. And, I expressed to him that while my small business incubator, accelerator and activator, The Atlanta Small Business Incubator (ASBI), does provide guidance, tools, methods, strategies and advice, we don’t provide physical office or development space, which he indicated was a priority in order to gain entrance to the upcoming conference.
When I inquired how it came to be that he found my practice (The Atlanta Small Business Incubator), after having likely done multiple Google Searches for “Small Business Incubators and Accelerators” or “Startup Hubs and Developers” in “Atlanta”, he indicated that he had already attempted to contact many of the organizations who came up in the search results, but I was the only person yet to answer his call. He also expressed that some didn’t even list an actual phone number. And, I found that experience on his part telling, sad, and typical of today’s business environment.
As I spoke with him, in the background I found results from The Founder Institute, Sharp Sheets, Failory, The Georgia Department of Economic Development, Starter Story, Atlanta Tech Village, Tracxn, Startup Atlanta, The University System of Georgia, and Georgia Tech showing dozens of startup and small business incubators, accelerators, activators, developers and hubs in Atlanta.
Some of these organizations require nothing to start, while others require up to a minimum of $250,000 to enter their programs. And, most of them focus on technological products.
Answer (Part 2):
In my opinion, the most important thing that an entrepreneur, startup, or new business needs to have is a firm business plan/foundation, and that’s something that many incubators, accelerators, activators, launchers, institutes, hubs and development environments fail to provide. In my opinion, the foundation is everything. And, without a firm foundation (which should include a strong, feasible business plan), most startups will fail. In my “Welcome Email” to new prospects who have requested an appointment or more information from my practice, The Atlanta Small Business Incubator (ASBI), I share with prospective clients that the most important ingredient in realizing their goals is a strong, feasible business plan. Other ingredients are also required (passion, commitment, money, time, energy, etc.), but the most important one is a foundational business plan. And, that requires planning, thinking, forethought, insight, honest criticism, sector and market research, and the willingness to compromise. I could supply you with a wealth of data providing reasons why most small businesses and startups fail, but a firm foundation (which requires a good business plan) is the primary reason. I share this concept in my self-improvement books and in my podcast, “Fresh Start with Dr. David” Whether you’re talking about general health, mental health, your child’s development, or your business idea, the foundation is everything.
In other words, no amount or degree of incubation, acceleration, activation, innovation, mentorship, or development are going to make a bad business idea, product, service or novelty work. Success begins with good ingredients. There’s no way to avoid that, no matter how much money or resources you have. Success in Business (and in life) comes down to a lot more than incubation & acceleration. No think tank can save a bad idea.
Finally, I’d over this piece of wisdom and advice: If you contact an organization or a business in order to receive help and assistance, and you can’t get anyone on the phone, no one responds to your call or emails, and you can’t speak to an actual person in English, that’s a BAD SIGN. And, that’s going to be the foundation for what you experience with that organization from that point forward. You’re just going to be another startup number or client number in the factory lineup. Say goodbye to personal, individualized assistance, help, attention, and mentorship. When people (and organizations) show you who they are, believe them.