UMKC Innovation Center partners with the university and the community to spark and sustain entrepreneurial efforts within our region and across the country.

KCSourceLink connects KC entrepreneurs to the right resource at the right time.

MOSourceLink connects Missouri entrepreneurs to the right resource at the right time.

Whiteboard2Boardroom connects entrepreneurs and businesses to technologies available for licensing.

Digital Sandbox KC provides early-stage proof-of-concept support for digital products.

Missouri Small Business & Technology Development Center provides technical assistance to startup and existing businesses.

ScaleUP! Kansas City helps businesses with revenues around $200K scale toward their first $1 million.

Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers helps local businesses obtain government contracts.

KCInvestED helps investors learn more about investing in KC startups.

SourceLink® helps communities nationwide build vibrant and vital entrepreneurial ecosystems.
UMKC Innovation Center
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Launching a Business? These Missouri Classes Can Help You Take Off and Succeed


Starting a business can be like riding a bike with no training wheels – exhilarating yet terrifying. The good news is that MOSourceLink can connect you to the programs that will guide you down the path to success.

Missouri is full of low- and no-cost programs and classes for entrepreneurs. No matter your entrepreneurial idea or where you are in the Show-Me State, we can help you find the resources that are right for you. Develop an entrepreneurial mindset, create a business plan and learn the things you don’t even know you don’t know.

Here are upcoming classes from MOSourceLink Resource Partners. And again – they’re either free or at a low cost. You’ve got a network of people who want you to succeed, and a bunch of them are listed right here.

Some of these courses are right in your backyard. And most are available online! So sign up and get down to business.

Missouri Western State University Center for Entrepreneurship: Business Workshops (St. Joseph)

Who’s it for? Small business owners and people interested in entrepreneurship.

The Center for Entrepreneurship and the Southside St. Joseph Development Corp. are hosting this series of workshops. The Oct. 13 session covers the legal and technology issues around protecting your business. Oct. 20 addresses bookkeeping and QuickBooks. Oct. 27 is about social media strategies for small businesses.

When: Wednesdays in October, 6:30 - 8 p.m.

Where: InterServ Community Center, St. Joseph, Missouri

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at Missouri Southern State University: Building a Business Plan

Who’s it for? People who have an idea and want to find out if it can be turned into a business.

Learn about the key elements of a business plan and how to use it as a management tool. This course will introduce the business model canvas, value proposition canvas, lean canvas and GrowthWheel.

When: Friday, Oct. 15, 10:30 - 11:45 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE – St. Louis: Internet Marketing Basics

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who are new to internet marketing or who need a refresher

This lunch and learn will help you understand the basics of marketing your business online and how to get started. Participants will become familiar with a range of marketing techniques and will walk away with an action item that can improve their business immediately.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 19, 12 - 1 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at Missouri Southern State University:  GrowthWheel: Getting a 360˚ Perspective on Your Business

Who’s it for: Entrepreneurs who want to learn about GrowthWheel and how they can incorporate it into their business idea or venture.

GrowthWheel is a visual tool that can help entrepreneurs nurture their businesses. People who are looking to start a business can also use the tool to better understand their business concept. This workshop will introduce GrowthWheel and highlight how you can use it to focus your efforts.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 19, 1:30 - 2:45 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Asian American Chamber of Commerce of Kansas City: Current Legal Issues Impacting Business

Who’s it for: New entrepreneurs and seasoned business owners.

This session will offer four breakout rooms. Participants can choose sessions on:

· Access to capital
· Commercial contracts
· Diversity and inclusion in the workplace
· Employment law issues for the COVID era and beyond

When: Tuesday, Oct. 19, 4 - 5 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Square One Small Business Services by Mid-Continent Public Library: Which Social Media Is Right for Your Business?

Who’s it for? Business owners who need insight on which social media platform will best reach their audience.

Learn the differences between the most popular platforms and which ones work best for different types of businesses. You’ll identify the platform(s) where you should focus your energy and know how to move forward.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 19, 6 - 7 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE – St. Louis: Startup 101

Who’s it for? People who have a business idea.

This fast-paced session is designed to help potential entrepreneurs think through their business idea and get started on the right foot. You’ll learn about value propositions, defining your target market and forecasting revenue. Online tools and legal steps will be covered, too.

When: Wednesday, Oct. 20, 12 - 1 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

OzSBI Smart Start: Developing a Successful Business (West Plains)

Who’s it for? People who dream of starting a business but don’t know where to begin.

This workshop covers the first steps of starting your own business. Participants will learn how to validate a business idea and how to create a business plan. The session will also teach you how to take control of your finances from the start.

When: Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2 - 4:30 p.m.

Where: Ozarks Small Business Incubator, West Plains, Missouri

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE – St. Louis: QuickBooks Basic

Who’s it for? Start-up or early-stage business owners who have no or limited experience with QuickBooks Online.

This course will help you get started with QuickBooks. Topics include selecting the online subscription that’s right for you and getting QuickBooks set up. You’ll also learn how to categorize transactions, utilize reports and establish bank and credit card feeds.

When: Monday, Oct. 25, 6:30 - 8 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Enterprise University Prospecting: Setting the Foundation for Successful Outbound B2B Sales

Who’s it for? Business owners and sales people who need to improve how they find customers.

In this introductory course, you’ll develop a foundation for effective sales. Participants will learn how to do outbound outreach, define their ideal customer and complete a successful discovery call.

When: Tuesday, Oct. 26, 10 - 11:30 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE - KC: Developing Your Online Presence

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who aren’t sure where to start getting their businesses online.

In this webinar, you’ll learn how to get your enterprise online and in the right places. Get ready for step-by-step guidance from online marketing professionals.

When: Wednesday, Oct. 27, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Skandalaris Center: Startup Capital Webinar

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs and innovators who are interested in learning more about startup capital.

In this session, you’ll learn how startup capital works and the different types of funding that are available for startups.

When: Thursday, Oct. 28, 3 - 4:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: Pitching to Investors

Who’s it for? Founders who are interested in finding investors.

This class will teach you what information you need to prepare before you meet with potential funders. It will also discuss how you can most effectively tell the story of your venture in the language of investors.

When: Thursday, Oct. 28, 4:30 - 7 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: $49; scholarships may be available

Apply here.

SCORE - KC: Business Credit

Who’s it for? Business owners who need to set up and build business credit, use that business credit as leverage for investors and prepare for big credit limits.

If you’re paying business expenses out of your own pocket or you’ve signed up for a business credit-building program that hasn’t provided much value, this webinar is for you. You’ll learn how to build and use business credit to your advantage.

When: Thursday, Oct. 28, 6 - 7:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Kirkwood Public Library: Business Brainstorm

Who’s it for? People who are thinking about starting or expanding a business.

In this session, you’ll meet with other entrepreneurs and talk through your ideas. You’ll also learn about free resources that can help you on your entrepreneurial journey.

When: Thursday, Oct. 28, 7 - 8 p.m.

Where: Kirkwood Public Library in Kirkwood, Missouri

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri PTAC: Selling to the Government: The First Steps

Who’s it for? Small business owners who want to learn about government contracts.

This session will cover the steps necessary to become a government contractor. You’ll also learn how to identify opportunities and how the process works. The course will also discuss the Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance services that can help your business meet these goals.

When: Friday, Oct. 29 or Monday, Dec. 20, 8:30 - 11:30 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here for Oct. 29. Apply here for Dec. 20.

SCORE - KC: Developing a Web-Based Business – eCommerce

Who’s it for? Anyone interested in selling products or services online.

Whether you’re interested in a business that only operates online or want to supplement your brick-and-mortar sales, this class is for you. You’ll learn how to make informed decisions and what steps to take to launch your business online.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 2, 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

1 Million Cups

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who want to connect with the community and gain insight on how to improve their businesses.

Local entrepreneurs give short presentations about their startups to potential partners, mentors and investors. Then, there’s a discussion with feedback and questions. These sessions help both those presenting and those listening learn about what it takes to build a successful business.

When: Every Wednesday at 9 a.m.; except Joplin, which meets at 8:30; and Sedalia, which meets the first Wednesday every month, 9 a.m.

Where:

·       Columbia: Online and at the Regional Economic Development Offices, Columbia, Missouri

·       Joplin: Advanced Training and Technology Center, Joplin, Missouri

·       Kansas City: Online and at Plexpod Westport Commons, Kansas City, Missouri

·       Sedalia: Stauffacher Theatre, State Fair Community College, Sedalia, Missouri

·       Springfield: Bambino’s Café, Springfield, Missouri

·       St. Louis: Center for Emerging Technologies, St. Louis, Missouri

Cost: Free

Kirkwood Public Library: Business Model Canvas: Customer Discovery & Your Value Proposition

Who’s it for? Business owners who need to create a strong value proposition.

In this course, participants will learn the basics of using the business model canvas to create a value proposition and marketing strategy. You’ll learn the art of the customer discovery process and walk away understanding your customers better.

When: Wednesday, Nov. 3, 11 a.m. - noon

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE – St. Louis: Social Media Marketing

Who’s it for? People who want to know how to create a dynamic brand presence online.

This session will cover everything from when to post to building campaigns that can help your business grow. You’ll learn how customer service is an intrinsic part of social media and how to create content that gets noticed.

When: Wednesday, Nov. 3, 11 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri PTAC: Winning Government Contracts: The First Steps

Who’s it for? Anyone who needs an introduction to becoming a government contractor.

This course will cover how to get started in the government contracting arena on local, state and federal levels. You’ll learn about registrations and certifications. The course will also discuss the Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance services that can help your business meet these goals.

When: Thursday, Nov. 4 or Wednesday, Dec. 1, 9 - 11:30 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here for Nov. 4. Apply here for Dec. 1.

SCORE – St. Louis: How to Start and Manage Your Own Business

Who’s it for? Anyone who wonders if they have what it takes to start a business.

This workshop will help you access your prospects and move forward with an effective business plan. Topics include marketing, legal business structures and financial considerations. You’ll leave the course understanding what you need to start a business, the key parts of a successful business and your next steps.

When: Saturday, Nov. 6, 9:30 - 11 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at Southern Missouri State University: Starting a Small Business: The First Steps

Who’s it for? New entrepreneurs who want to learn how to start their business effectively.

This session will discuss targeting different markets and the importance of understanding your customers. You’ll also learn how to register your business with federal, state and local agencies and get an overview of funding and cash flow.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 9, 10:30 - 11:45 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: Social Media Road Map for Business

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who are new to social media for business.

If you know you need to use social media but don’t know how or why, this course is for you. You’ll learn why social media matters, how to create a weekly plan and what to track. Participants will walk away with ideas, examples and an action plan.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 9, 5:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: $199; scholarships may be available

Apply here.

SCORE - KC: Business Concept

Who’s it for? People who want to see if their business idea is viable.

This webinar will provide step-by-step guidance on researching your idea, your market and your competition. By the end of the class, you’ll be able to identify your target customers, describe your products and collect information on the competition that will support your feasibility plan. 

When: Tuesday, Nov. 9, 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE - KC: Strategy/Social Media Marketing

Who’s it for? Business owners who want to learn how to maximize their customer reach.

This session covers strategies for pricing and positioning and the difference between features and benefits. You’ll learn how to outline your marketing strategy, test your message, choose the right sales channel and implement the entire plan – including an online presence.

When: Wednesday, Nov. 10, 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: First Steps to Starting a Business

Who’s it for? Budding entrepreneurs who are ready for a critical overview of the first steps starting a business.

Participants learn how to access their strengths and weaknesses and connect with other business owners. You’ll also learn about planning, legal and regulatory requirements and identifying sources of funding.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 16, or Tuesday, Dec. 14, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Cost: $49; scholarships may be available

Apply here for Nov. 16. Apply here for Dec. 14.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: Basics of Writing a Business Plan

Who’s it for? Business owners and managers who need to know how to create a business plan.

Learn why business plans are important and what elements and data they should include. Get ready for lots of tips on how a business plan should look and read. You’ll gain a better understanding of how a business plan should function and how to get started.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 16 or Tuesday, Dec. 14, 1 - 3 p.m.

Cost: $49; scholarships may be available

Apply here for Nov. 16. Apply here for Dec. 14.

Missouri SBDC at UMKC: Reading and Understanding Financial Statements

Who’s it for? Business owners who need to know how to turn financial statements into useful management tools.

With this course, you’ll learn how to identify key business information that’s on the income statement and balance sheet. When you leave this class, you’ll know how to calculate ratios and you’ll understand what they mean for your business.

When: Tuesday, Nov. 16, 5:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: $149; scholarships may be available

Apply here.

Enterprise University: When to Consult with Your Business Attorney

Who’s it for? New entrepreneurs who want to avoid costly legal mistakes.

In this virtual session, attorneys will cover the different legal issues that require a lawyer’s professional assistance. You’ll learn how to determine the legal structure that’s right for your business and what documents you need to make it happen.

When: Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2 - 3:30 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Kirkwood Public Library: Planning for Your Business

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who are creating a business plan.

Free tools can help you access relevant data to bolster your business plan. Learn about these resources and how they can help you build a clear path forward.

When: Thursday, Nov. 18, 7 - 8 p.m.

Where: Kirkwood Public Library, Kirkwood, Missouri

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE - KC: Business Financial Literacy

Who’s it for? New business owners who want to enhance their financial knowledge.

This class will introduce you to financial statements. You’ll see the real impact of raising prices, reducing costs and increasing sales volume.

When: Monday, Nov. 22, 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Missouri SBDC at Missouri Southern State University: Utilizing Social Media for Your Target Market

Who’s it for? Business owners who want to use social media.

Learn about the different social media platforms and what audiences they attract. You’ll leave this session with ideas on how to utilize social media for your specific marketing needs.

When: Friday, Nov. 23, 10:30 - 11:45 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Callaway Chamber of Commerce: Sell Online with eCommerce Tools

Who’s it for? Entrepreneurs who want to sell products online.

Explore the ecommerce options, including Google My Business and Google Merchant Center. This course will also show you how to sell on your website with Shopify. You’ll learn helpful ways to make your business stand out online as well.

When: Tuesday, Dec. 7, 9 - 10 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

SCORE - KC: Accessing Capital in KC – How Entrepreneurs Get Money

Who’s it for? Business owners who are exploring how to fund their ventures.

Do you need an investor? What are your options for financing your new business? This course will talk about how Kansas City businesses are funded and how you can get the financial backing to make yours work.

When: Thursday, Dec. 16, 9 - 11 a.m.

Where: Online

Cost: Free

Apply here.

Help your business grow

Not finding what you’re looking for? No problem! MOSourceLink has your back.

Our Network Navigators can customize a Personal Action Plan to help you reach your business goals. Just tell us where you are and where you want to go. We’ll create a free, individualized plan to meet your needs.

You can also check out our complete calendar of upcoming events. You’ll find networking opportunities, classes, mentoring and more. And our Resource Navigator includes more than 500 organizations across Missouri that can help your business thrive.

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