Become a SmartStart™ Community
SmartStart™ Communities partner with TNECD’s BERO office to support a thriving small business and entrepreneurial environment by providing education, tools and resources.
What are the benefits?
A SmartStart™ Community increases collaboration in a community, enabling its members to deliver the most up-to-date resources and tools to its aspiring and existing small business and entrepreneurs.
Participating organizations, or Community Partners, increase value in their own community and improve overall customer and stakeholder satisfaction.
How does a community participate?
It’s a simple, clear process.
Each community must
1. Have a minimum of three unique Community Partners,
2. Attend an initial 30-minute training, online or in person, and
3. Agree to and maintain regular communication with BERO.
Upon completion of training, Community Partners will receive a resource toolkit that includes SmartStart™ books, stickers and window decals.
Who can be a Community Partner?
Any organization in the community that is willing to provide resources for their aspiring and existing small businesses and entrepreneurs. A Community Partner often has a “storefront,” but that is not necessary.
Here are some examples of Community Partners:
- An elected official’s office
- Chamber of Commerce
- Entrepreneurial Support Organizations
- Electric providers
- Small business leaders
- Educational institutions
- Artists, maker’s spaces, inventors
- And more!
Any combination of Community Partners works because each community is different – there is no specific formula.
We offer rolling onboarding for communities ready to become a SmartStart™ Community.
There is no deadline. Training sessions are being coordinated now.
It easy to do! Be sure you have all the Community Partners’ contact information handy.
To sign-up as a SmartStart™ Community, complete the form below:
Questions? Please email us at ecd.SmartStart@tn.gov.
In this section, Community Partners can add and remove members, request additional resources like SmartStart™ guides, stickers and decals, and make changes to the Tennessee SmartStart™ Guide entries for their community.
What do you want to do?
Make a change to your Community Partners