Enter your zip code below to get matched with a business expert near you!
Browse the profiles of SCORE mentors and narrow down your choices by filtering based on industry, location, area of expertise, and other criteria.
Identify your small business needs and desired support.
Request a SCORE Mentor as your advisor to small business success.
Schedule a mentoring session with your assigned SCORE mentor
Set goals for your small business with guidance from your SCORE mentor.
Work with your SCORE mentor through the life of your business.
Partnering with you one-on-one or in small group sessions, SCORE mentors support your success by providing experienced advice, consulting on best practices, and educating you on small business topics.
If at any point, you need a different expert – because you need different expertise or if you don’t feel your mentor is the best fit – you can request additional support from other SCORE mentors in our network.
We can work with you using different communication methods, including phone, video, email and in-person meetings. We can provide support for a simple business question or work with you through complex business challenges. You can with your mentor(s) as often as you need, for the life of your business. We provide support for all stages of the business lifecycle. This means that we’re here to help you if you’re thinking about starting a business, managing a business, growing your business, selling or exiting your business.
To get started, simply use our mentor search or enter your zip code in the field above to complete a mentoring request. This will be sent to the appropriate mentor or chapter who will respond within 48 hours.
If you have a more general question, we’ll pair you with a local expert who can work with you to identify your area of greatest need and will coach you on that topic. If necessary, your mentor will invite other SCORE subject matter experts to help if you have questions on several different topics.
SCORE volunteers cannot sign any client’s confidentiality agreements or any Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDA), but the client’s confidentiality is covered in the volunteer’s agreement with SCORE.
This agreement to maintain client confidentiality - as well as other values that are integral to the client relationship - is confirmed in writing in the SCORE Code of Ethics. Among other things, our Code of Ethics directs our volunteers as follows:
- Always place the business interests of SCORE clients first.
- Protect the confidentiality of all client information so that it remains within SCORE.
Regardless of your industry, our mentors are knowledgeable in all areas of business and can answer your questions about popular topics such as sales, marketing, finance, accounting, management, and technology.
SCORE mentoring sessions are collaborative meetings between the small business owner and the SCORE mentor. They are typically scheduled for an hour and can be held virtually, through online meetings, phone calls, email, or even in person if you would like to be paired with a local mentor. You can share your business goals, progress, challenges, and questions during these sessions. SCORE mentors will offer advice, resources, and insights so you gain clarity on your next best steps.
When you first meet with your mentor, they will ask you questions about your business and your goals. This will help them understand how to best support you and answer your business questions. They will leverage their personal experience and knowledge to help you avoid common challenges and mistakes. If they do not have the expertise you need, they may invite another mentor to participate in the meeting.
Once you discuss your initial business question, they may ask you to complete business templates or to review resources on SCORE.org. Additionally, they may recommend SCORE or partner workshops or resources to meet your needs. They will also schedule a follow-up session to ensure you’re on the right track and to keep supporting your business.
Other tips to make the most of your mentoring include:
- Checking your inbox for emails from SCORE.
- Be ready to actively participate in your session. This means bringing specific questions that we can answer, engaging in discussions about your business, and challenging the mentor's ideas & suggestions if you don't fully understand them.
- If your business is already in operation, please be willing to share your history, recent financials, cash flow, and business plan. This will give your mentor a much-needed understanding of your current operations so they can suggest ideas about how/where to improve.
- Be open and honest in the discussion.
- Be willing to meet with your mentor over a period of time. Many of the questions that we receive will take more than one meeting to answer. Remember, mentoring is always free and you can meet with your mentor as often as needed (based on schedule and availability).
- Keep in mind that SCORE mentors will not do the work for you. We are here as guides and advisors but we’ll ask you to do the work. This is to help you develop the skills and knowledge needed to manage your business.
- When you’ve achieved success with your mentor, submit a success story for our website. This will allow us to celebrate your accomplishments and spread the word about your business. Your story could be featured in SCORE’s national media releases and marketing efforts, which will build awareness for your business.
- Consider attending a SCORE workshop to complement your mentoring. We offer educational webinars, workshops and events online and in your local community. This will help you strengthen your knowledge and expand your business network.