Articles

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By Pat Hammond

Last week I shared my three recent SCORE experiences as an explanation for why I was dropping SCORE Merrimack Valley from my suggested list of business resources. This week, I'm talking about a few easy fixes that could help alleviate some of the frustration felt by SCORE Merrimack Valley's mentors and clients. 

Here are my simple, low-cost, low effort suggestions to address the most pressing issues I've seen with the local SCORE chapter's mentoring program. 

1. Vet clients before they get in the door

One of the mentors complained that it felt like they were wasting a lot of time with clients who either had no idea how a business operates or simply didn't have a business yet. 

The easiest way to separate the people who are still in the idea phase or just starting out would be to ask them to complete a one-page business canvas snapshot as part of the application process.

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By Pat Hammond

I regret to say that I am no longer recommending SCORE as a resource for people looking for one-on-one mentoring to start or grow their business.

Between my own bad experiences, yes that is plural, and reports from many other people, I've come to the conclusion our local chapter, SCORE Merrimack Valley, is not a good fit as a business resource for most people. 

I don't know what the problem is. 

The national SCORE organization provides a large variety of useful information in the form of webinars, online classes, and downloads through their website, but somehow, the mentoring services offered through the local SCORE chapter are singularly lacking in usefulness. 

I know several individuals who work/volunteer with SCORE Merrimack Valley and they are friendly, knowledgeable people who genuinely want to help. But in spite of the available tools and their collective experience, the mentoring program continues to fall short.

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