The nonprofit world can be difficult to enter, so when Denise Perreault was in the beginning stages of starting her own nonprofit, Art Parts, she looked to the Boulder Small Business Development Center for guidance. The SBDC helped Denise and her co-founders figure out the most crucial aspects of their new business.
“In our four-year founding and planning phase, the most daunting task was setting a realistic budget, as we had no experience there. The free coaching sessions with experienced accountants helped us create and fine-tune our business plan, and shared names of local professionals and nonprofit entities who we could interview for their experience and advice,” said Denise.
Consulting and workshops make up the skeleton of the SBDC’s system, and Denise and her co-founders made sure to utilize the system to its full potential. Consulting offered them one-on-one time with experienced professionals, while the workshops provided a valuable group experience.
“I was always impressed by the passion, commitment, and expertise of the presenters, who broke down big tasks into manageable bites and removed many question marks from our minds. The workshops were often free or at minimal cost, so we felt able to attend before revenue was coming in. Sometimes, just hearing words of sincere encouragement from other female entrepreneurs at these workshops was the impetus we needed to keep plugging away,” remarked Denise.
Art Parts is an art supply shop in Boulder that features recycled industrial and manufacturing materials, like bike gears and fabric scraps. The unique vibe of the store is certainly beneficial for a niche market, which can sometimes make it hard for a business to be successful, but Art Parts thrived with the help of the SBDC.
Denise concluded, “Boulder entrepreneurs are fortunate to have the considerable resources of the SBDC at their disposal. We are so appreciative of the SBDC for helping make Art Parts Creative Reuse Center the popular nonprofit we are today, and we’ll be proud to celebrate our second successful year serving Boulder County’s teachers, students, artists, makers, and the public in May 2017. From the bottom of our arty hearts, thank you so much for everything you do to encourage the success of new Boulder County businesses like us!”