Making Time for Change with Plan for Growth

Join SBIDC and Skopos in congratulating the achievements of this cohort!

 And if you’re a creative entrepreneur looking for business clarity, Plan for Growth resumes this fall Sign up for information here fall creative and be notified when applications launch later this summer.

No part of being a small business owner comes easily: from getting up and running to maintaining momentum to scaling operations, the path is never straightforward. For creatives who fall into the business world, the line is only more jagged, and carving out time to work explicitly on long-term business goals can easily fall behind on the list of day to day needs.

Luckily, resources for serving these small businesses are plentiful, especially in New York City. Plan for Growth (PFG) is a hands-on business education program that provides essential, accessible training for small business owners. Co-hosted by the South Brooklyn Industrial Design Corporation the (SBIDC) and Skopos Collective, PFG offers participants a dedicated place and time to actively work on their business goals, construct a plan to achieve them, and get expert advice and peer-to-peer feedback along the way.

The twelfth PFG cohort wrapped in June, leaving the nine unique Brooklyn artists, manufacturers, and creatives that completed the program primed to take their business to the next level. Over the ten-week series, instructors guided the cohort through course on leadership, marketing, goal planning, technology, and finances. PFG culminated in a pitch session to the cohort and a panel of investors, with a prize going to the most skillful presentation as judged by panelist unfamiliar with the businesses.

The program kicked off by investigating each company’s mission, vision, and values with a class led by members of global brand consultancy UME. Kim Robinson, founder of 3pts, detailed the steps of a customer’s journey and building a marketing plan; brand strategist Kassie Phillips took students through the trends of publicity and advertising; Elki Camacho, head of Elki Consulting Group, broke down the essentials of project management; and Skopos’ Elli Papadopoulos brought in her financial expertise to explain money management and financing. The final presentations focused on succinctly outlining the business to an outsider: its story, the market, growth goals, and long-term actionable steps.

The businesses participating in this cohort represented a swath of Brooklyn’s vibrant creative community. Many were artists with personal practices: ceramicist Kalya O’Donoghue (Kalya OD Studio), furniture designer Hannah Bigeleisen (H. Bigeleisen Designs), painter Isabel Baptista (Isabel Baptista Studio), and multimedia production artist Dave Cicirelli (Roschambeau). Others focused on services, like creative consultant Cateia Rembert (Cateia’s Logistics), acupuncturist Dr. Angela Myles (Bespoke Healing), architect Kimberly Neuhaus (Neuhaus Design Architecture), and members from co-op production company Meerkat Media. The winner of the pitch prize was Suniti Ramanujam, owner of Ayurvedic company Pure Mitti which provides natural, toxin-free beauty, cleaning, and lifestyle products. 

And if you’re a creative entrepreneur looking for business clarity, sign up to be notified when applications for our next cohort launch!

“This class changed the way our company approaches our goals, and demystified the tools of marketing ourselves organically! We went from vague aspirations to clear action items in a matter of weeks, and we’ve gained clients directly because of it.”

—Eric, Meerkat Media

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