By Ashley Graves
The Cullman Times
Local small business owners filled the third floor banquet room of the All Steak Friday to learn how to facilitate the growth of their business with the help of the Alabama Small Business Development Center Network.
Matt Wilson, of the ASBDC, was the guest speaker during the Chamber of Commerce's monthly Fourth Friday luncheon. He said currently, small businesses help create 75 percent of new jobs.
"Small businesses in the state can be the driving economic force to bring the state forward," Wilson said. "Alabama small businesses are the true backbone of Alabama's economy. I know we hear that quite often, but they truly are. What you all do is extremely important."
The ASBDC is a statewide, inter-instructional program to enhance the growth in Alabama by providing management and technical assistance to small businesses. According to Wilson, the network counsels and trains business people in a wide variety of business topics, as well as provide comprehensive information services and access to experts in many fields.
"I know right now small businesses are truly concerned about the fact of 'How can I compete in the globalized economy,?'" Wilson said. "The bottom line is you can. I can't give you a master plan, but I can offer that my group and the people that work with us is here, and we're here to support small businesses."
In addition to the centralized state office located in Tuscaloosa, there are 10 other centers located at universities across the state.
"The most important thing is this network is made up of dedicated individuals," Wilson said. "Small businesses are going to be the ones that continue to bring this state forward into the future."
* Ashley Graves can be reached by phone at 734-2131, ext. 225, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org