Chamber hears from Small Business Development coach

Published 4:11 pm Monday, February 19, 2024

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The Harlan County Chamber of Commerce heard a presentation concerning the ins and outs of starting a new business during their regular meeting for February.

Kentucky Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Director and Business Coach Rodney Kuhl provided a Smart Start presentation aimed at how to start a business.

“SBDC is the Small Business Development Center,” Kuhl said. “We’ve got 13 locations across the state of Kentucky.”

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Kuhl explained the mission for the SBDC is to assist entrepreneurs and small business owners.

“Each coach in our network are current business owners or former business owners,” Kuhl said. “We feel that…you can’t really take advice from somebody who’s not been in the arena.”

According to Kuhl, SBDC coaches are well versed in the areas in which they assist their clients.

“We want to help our small business owners,” Kuhl said. “We have about 28 or 30 coaches now across the state. Our mantra is if you get one of us, you get all of us.”

He noted that the SBDC will pair a prospective business owner with the coach who is best suited for them.

“We have people within our network that do nothing but creative things,” Kuhl said. “Somebody else’s skill set may work much better with helping them.”

He explained that if another coach is better equipped to assist a certain client, they will be brought in to work with that client.

“We’ve got varying degrees of skill sets in our network,” Kuhl said.

Kuhl mentioned the different aspects of starting a business such as creating a business plan and dealing with financial institutions.

According to the SBCD website at,“the business plan should identify the expectations you have for your new or existing business. If you plan to utilize the plan to obtain financing, the completed plan should ‘tell the story’ of your business to a potential lender. The plan should serve as a stand-alone document in that all business issues are addressed without requiring additional verbal explanation. Review your plan regularly and make appropriate changes when your plans and strategies change.”

Kuhl told the Chamber members he hopes to work with multiple entrepreneurs in Harlan County.

For more information on the Kentucky Small Business Development Center, go to their website at or contact their London office at 606-401-0777.