We kicked off small business week a bit early by attending an all-expenses paid business trip to Reno, NV for the 2018 American Small Business Championship Training and Networking Event - huge thanks to SCORE, Sam's Club, and our supportive 360U family! The event was at the Atlantis Casino and Resort with 102 other #bizchampion start-ups from around the country (and no, sadly we didn't win any jackpots in case you were wondering...but we did give it a shot). We spent 2 full days networking, training and collaborating with other entrepreneurs from around the country, and learning from some of the industry's best in digital marketing, human resources, legal advising, public relations, team management and much more. We left with SO many new ideas and we can't wait to get the (soft)ball rolling on some of them!
On Wednesday, we cleared our evening calendar to attend the SBA Celebrate Small Business dinner with our favorite SCORE mentor Jim and other local small business owners and area entrepreneurs! Five area businesses were honored as "Success Stories" for their growth and excellence in their company and in their community. Talk about an amazing local community we live in here in the Fox Cities! We feel so supported, motivated and encouraged by this group of smart and talented neighbors. We connected with a few other women entrepreneurs, family businesses and even had the opportunity to meet Wisconsin Senator Robert Cowles who attended the event.
Thursday started with an early morning, sister's brainstorming breakfast/coffee at the Copper Rock Cafe on College Avenue before we attended the Fox Cities SCORE Chapter meeting at the Fox Cities Chamber office in Appleton. We met a number of the SCORE mentor volunteers (a very talented business-minded group of individuals) and presented to them on our latest 360U business plans.
If you would have asked us 5 years ago if we would be celebrating National Small Business Week the way we are now in 2018, we may not have been so sure. This week has taken on such a new meaning for us in our 3rd year of business with 360U Softball. We are learning that what we do is SO much bigger than ourselves. Through a lot of learning, networking and growing these past 2 weeks -- we continue to come back to one, very distinct fact: the reason we do what we do is 100% for the athletes we work with and the passion we feel towards making a difference in the lives of these young women we're blessed to encounter. One swing at a time.
#femaleentrepreneur #startups #freementoring #business #consulting #businessconsultant #freebusinessadvice #womeninbiz #entrpreneurlife #doit #supportlocal #sba #smallbusinessweek #girlsinsports #womenempowerment #womensupportingwomen
Maria Van Abel & Laura Beyer
When we started 360U Softball in 2016, our goal was to help softball players get better. We found a lot of athletes needing instruction, and wanted to help them bridge the gap between where they were, and where they wanted to be as softball players. VERY quickly, we found that the grand opportunity in front of us was not just to teach mechanics to these young women, but FAR more importantly, to help them understand how truly amazing each and every one of them are and to find their best self.