Illinois Small Business
Development Center at WIU

Dan Voorhis


Throughout your business venture you will face key decisions such as:
How do I find and keep great employees?
How do I determine if a new market (such as export)
   is a good opportunity for me?

How can I increase sales with a website and selling online?
How do I improve efficiency to make more profit?
How do I deal with decline or even potential bankruptcy?
How can I ensure my business continues after I retire?

Continuous improvement is the name of the game in business today and it can take many forms. It can mean entering new markets. It can mean improving the manufacturing or production process. Or, it can mean improving the skills and talents of you and your management team.

If you’re looking to enter new markets, it pays to do a little research first. You may need to use outside marketing support or consultants. Extensive support can be found if you’re trying to do business overseas.  Illinois operates export offices around the globe, and the Illinois SBDC International Trade Center offers a wide array of support if you want to do business overseas. If you sell agriculture-related products, you can get help from the Illinois Department of Agriculture.

If you’re interested in improving your internal processes for manufacturing or production, the Illinois Manufacturing Extension Center may be the place to go. The Illinois Manufacturing Extension Center helps firms improve manufacturing and engineering processes, and address health, safety and environmental concerns. Through the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s regional Retention and Expansion Program, Existing Industry Specialists can visit you at your site and offer specific information about business assistance programs, resources and services.

If you need help in strengthening your management team’s capabilities, these programs can help. You can also access private coaching and counseling via the SBDC, SCORE, or from a private business network or leadership development firm in your region.