The U.S. Small Business Association recently expanded its Business Development mentor-protégé program. By pairing with a BD mentor enterprise, all small business owners can benefit from the expertise of their mentor and better compete for government contracts — both of which can drive up the value of their business when it's time to sell. Three key benefits of participating in this program include:
• Actionable business knowledge: In order to serve as mentors, businesses have to demonstrate financial health, practical experience and reliability. Protégés can therefore look to their mentor organization for a business model to emulate. By following their mentor organization's advice and guidance, small business protégés can bolster business processes like accounting, employee management and job bidding.
• Joint ventures: The most important advantage for small business protégés is the opportunity to form joint ventures with their mentors, which they can use to win contracts that would otherwise be difficult or impossible to land, including some specially-designated federal contracts.
• An advantage come sale time: Many small business owners will one day look into selling their organization, and they'll want to position it as lucratively as possible. By providing small business owners with actionable business knowledge and the opportunity to pursue joint ventures with their mentor, the mentor-protégé program can add value to a small business which can make a big difference come sale time.
Most small businesses could use the added capacity to be gained from a mentor-protégé relationship. The SBA Mentor Protégé programs can help them do that.