THE JUNE 14 Op-Ed piece, “Thinking of starting a business? Ignore the expert advice?” reinforces the point that we make to our clients at SCORE every day, namely that in order to succeed you must have a relentless dedication to achieving your goal, because there are many obstacles to starting a new business. However, we strongly disagree with the characterization of SCORE based on Mr. Jerry Cianciolo’s single experience way back in 1986. We are sure that at the time this was an unusual experience, and for certain today, SCORE has evolved to an organization bringing the experience of over 10,000 expert volunteer counselors in more than 300 chapters to small businesses across the country.
We train our counselors to listen first, identify needs of their clients, and then draw on our vast library of training and reference materials and, more important, on their deep experience to guide both start-up and in-business clients. SCORE mentors are there for the life of a small business; from creating and evaluating business plans all the way through a business’s lifecycle to eventual selling or exiting. In fact, in 2013 SCORE clients started 38,630 new businesses and created 67,319 jobs, and 40,175 small-business clients increased their revenues.