Minority Entrepreneurs

County Offices in Ventura and Los Angeles Counties

Locations of key County government offices in Ventura and Los Angeles Counties

Locations and contact information for City Offices

Agoura Hills City Hall

30001 Ladyface Court

    List of Ventura County Library locations for Business Research

Locations of Libraries in Ventura County for Business Research


Tremendous information source supplied by Chapter 143 to new entrepreneurs on business related topics. Information in workbook covers accounting, insurance, taxes, business plan, marketing, SBA loans, and business structure

Before you launch into your own business, there are dozens of details to be considered - from the momentous to the almost (but not quite) trivial.  Here is a checklist covering many items you need to take care of.

Preliminary Research

  • assess your strengths and weaknesses
  • establish business and personal goals
  • assess your financial resources
  • identify the financial risks
  • determine the start-up costs
  • decide on your business location
  • do market research
  • identify your customers
  • develop a marketing plan

Business Transactions

  • select a lawyer
  • decide on business organization-proprietorship, partnership, corporation
  • create your business-register your name, get incorporated
  • select an accountant
  • prepare a business plan
  • get financing
  • establish a line of credit
  • select an insurance agent
  • obtain business insurance

First Steps

  • design and order business cards
  • obtain a lease
  • get furniture and equipment
  • review local building codes
  • obtain a license or permit (if applicable)
  • send off for federal and state tax forms
  • apply for Employer Identification number (if applicable)
  • join a professional organization
  • line up suppliers if needed
  • set a starting date

 Business Plan

The most important reason to do a Business Plan is for you to become convinced that you can turn your idea or dream into a real functioning business. Until you have satisfied yourself that your plan "makes sense", you shouldn't even think of trying to sell anyone else. Once you're convinced you can make your idea work then you can show it to lenders and prospective investors. A Business Plan is not a "one-time" document just for obtaining investors or financing. You should consider it to be a "living document" which you will update and upgrade from time to time as information and circumstances change and as appropriate as you thus make changes in your business.

A Business Plan/Financial Plan is an absolute necessity in applying for a loan for a start-up business and is highly recommended in applying for a loan for an existing business.

How do you do it? It's not easy. And it's unlikely you can just sit down and produce a good plan in one sitting because a lot of trial and error and testing of ideas is involved. It will most likely evolve over a period of time.

How? Think about your business idea often and ask yourself these questions about every aspect of it. Who?, what?, where?, when?, why?, how?, how much?, how many?, how often? Write down the answers. Look for "holes". It's easy to list all kinds of ideas. Do you have the knowledge and resources to carry them out cost effectively? Are you "double counting" your resources, counting on them to do two different things at the same time?

Why do you want to pursue a particular part of your plan? Who will carry it out? When? Where? How much will it cost? How many sales will each marketing campaign generate? How does the cost to acquire a prospect, make a sale, or provide the product or service compare to your product or service pricing parameters?

Visualize some "typical days". What is being done? Why ? Who is doing it? Ask and answer these questions over and over until you are convinced you know how your business will function day-to-day. Now capture this knowledge in your plan and show how it will work financially. Make changes in your plan until you have a plan where all the elements fit together and work from a marketing, operational, and financial perspective.

There is no single prescribed format for a Business Plan. However, we believe many of you will find the format shown below to be helpful. You should feel free to adjust it to your unique circumstances.

A SCORE Counselor will be glad to assist you by reviewing your business plan draft(s) and giving you constructive comments. This can be accomplished in face to face meetings or by exchanging emails of sections of the plan as you write them. Use of a word processor such as Microsoft Word or Works is recommended.



A well-researched and realistic business plan will help you create a viable new business with a feasible business model and business strategy for future growth.

Precision Transmission Finds Success Implementing Advice From SCORE

It seems you’re never too old to listen to your mother—even when it comes to business. Brothers Paul and Leonard Roybal decided to launch a transmission shop in Santa Fe after growing up with the family’s service station, which their father ran until he passed away in 1991. Their mother, Yolanda, led the shop until she retired in 1998.

Paul and Leonard Roybal
My Location
Santa Fe NM
United States
Year Company Formed
My Successes

When Paul and Leonard wanted to reopen a transmission shop at the same location, they had to make their case to their own mother. "We had to present a business plan to our mother in competition with another business that wanted the location," Leonard says.

"She told us, go to SCORE and see if they feel it’s a viable business," he adds. "She wanted us to succeed, of course, and with SCORE’s help, she knew we could find out whether the business would work."

In fact, Yolanda herself had received advice from Santa Fe SCORE mentors after taking over the business in the early ‘90s. The Roybals worked with SCORE Mentor Bart Jacobs, a retail expert, to create a business plan and budget.

What's Great About My Mentor?

Working with SCORE Mentor Bart Jacobs, Paul and Leonard saw that they could implement new ideas to improve efficiency, enhance sales and reduce overhead. The realities of doing business demanded a new approach to marketing, inventory and many other areas of the business. With their vision for Precision Transmission, the brothers earned their mother’s confidence to open the business at the family’s location.

Precision Transmission now employs six people and has seen increasing sales and profitability. They estimate business has grown 80 to 100 percent since the ‘90s. Though business is booming, the brothers always find time for SCORE. The two keep meeting with mentors each month since opening their business. Though Bart acts as their primary mentor, he occasionally calls in other mentors as the business' needs change from human resources issues to cash management to financing.

How SCORE Helped

SCORE continues to provide valuable mentoring for whatever new issues may arise. "I don’t know any place where a small business like us can get advice like this," Leonard says. "We couldn’t afford this type of knowledge and we couldn’t have done it without SCORE."

"Imagine hiring a team of advisors like this," Paul adds.

Their biggest fan is still their mother. "It's just amazing to me what the boys did with the business," she says. "I'm just so proud of them."

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