Free small business growth program to help southern Utah ‘thrive’ – St George News

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ST. GEORGE –A leadership training series designed to accelerate the growth of high-potential small businesses in the United States has made its way to southern Utah.

A graphic shows the Thrive Program Details | Photo courtesy of Jackie Hobson, St George News

According to an April press release from the US Small Business Administration, Isabella Casillas Guzman, head of the US SBA, announced the launch of THRIVE, a redesigned training program for small business executives, formerly known as emerging leaders. The acronym THRIVE stands for Zug. Hope. Rise. innovate. Car. raise.

“Thrive, e.gBringing together executives rethought initiative, will provide emerging small business leaders with tools, knowledge and access to the best and brightest minds in economic development to help them accelerate their growth and help them become competitive in an increasingly global economy,” Guzman said the press release. “The Biden-Harris administration continues to do everything possible to empower small business owners to continue fueling our nation’s historic economic growth.”

Marla Trollan, Utah District Director of the US SBA, said the district office is pleased to announce that this free program will now be available to business owners in southern Utah, something they have not been able to offer in the past.

Trollan said there will be several industry experts teaching core business concepts tailored to small businesses, adding that this is an exciting change from the previous program. Aspiring Leaders, and that companies have the ability to tailor each program to their unique needs.

Jackie Hobson, marketing and outreach specialist for the Utah District Office of the Small Business Administration, smiles for the camera, date and place not given |  Photo courtesy of Jackie Hobson, St George News
Jackie Hobson, marketing and outreach specialist for the Utah District Office of the Small Business Administration, smiles for the camera, place and date not given | Photo courtesy of Jackie Hobson, St George News

Jackie Hobson, marketing and outreach specialist at the US SBA’s Utah office, told St. George News she works closely with partners to collaborate and provide the best services for small businesses in Utah.

Hobson said the best part of her position is working directly with business owners on initiatives like National Small Business Week or the Thrive program. Hobson recently came from the Wasatch frontline, where there are many organizations competing with programs and initiatives to help small businesses. And while most of these programs available are fantastic, she said many business owners cost $1,000 or more to join.

“This program is free, the quality is top-notch, and it’s local so companies don’t have to find something virtual every week or two or go up north to get this type of training,” Hobson added.

The leadership training series, THRIVE, is designed to provide ambitious small business leaders with a challenging opportunity to accelerate their growth through targeted training led by inspiring small business development leaders. This initiative revolutionizes the rich history of leadership training for small businesses looking for growth, according to their website.

A graphic shows reasons for applying for the THRIVE program |  Photo courtesy of Jackie Hobson, St George News
A graphic shows reasons for the application Thrive program | Photo courtesy of Jackie Hobson, St George News

Hobson said the program will run from July through December, during which time small businesses will work to build a growth strategy for their business.

Each module of the training is taught virtually by subject matter experts. You’ll also have a face-to-face component with guest speakers and CEO discussions for peer-to-peer learning, along with a personal coach who will provide face-to-face group classes and one-on-one advice to help companies Development of their growth support plans.

Hobson said the Emerging Leaders program has historically trained over 5,000 small business owners and created over 11,000 jobs, generated nearly $1 billion in new financing and secured over $4 billion in government contracts.

“The desired outcome for THRIVE is for companies to have a solid plan to take their business to the next level, whether that’s expanding by adding a new product or service, adding different distribution channels to get more of to reach their target audience, or by completely adding a new market segment for sale,” said Hobson.

According to the press release, the training series will be spread over a six-month period and will include personal coaching, self-paced tuition, mentoring and classroom time.

The program will allow participants to work with a network of experienced subject matter experts in core business topics such as accounting, business strategy, marketing and human resources. This program is customized to the unique needs of each small business owner.

A graphic shows THRIVE's mobile site and program dates |  Photo courtesy of Jackie Hobson, St George News
A graphic shows the Thrive mobile website and program dates | Photo courtesy of Jackie Hobson, St George News

Hobson clarified that this new training is not intended for startups or those considering starting a new business. Rather, this training series is open to small business owners and executives who have annual sales of at least $250,000, have been in business for at least three years, and have at least one employee besides themselves.

Applications for the 2022 training cycle are now open and will end on May 31st. In-person tuition takes place at the St. George Area Chamber of Commerce. Small business owners can learn more about eligibility, how to apply, program format, and locations by visiting them This website or by contacting your local contact SBA District Office.

About the US Small Business Administration

According to the press release, the US Small Business Administration is helping make America’s dream of entrepreneurship a reality. As the single point of contact and voice for small businesses, backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA provides entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, expand, expand, or diversify their business a statement to recover disaster.

It offers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit their website.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2022, All Rights Reserved.

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