SCORE San Diego's Business Enhancement Forums provide a venue for entrepreneurs and business owners to both receive and provide peer advice on common issues many small business owners face.

"Forums provide an outlet for business owners to connect with people who have dealt with similar problems and obstacles," said SCORE San Diego's vice president of programs, Sally Broff. "It can be lonely growing a small business and our forums offer attendees a sense of community and support from people who have been in their shoes."

There are two forum programs designed specifically for mature and new businesses:

* CEO Forums are for owners of established companies with at least $1 million in annual revenues and five non-family employees.

* Founder Forums cater to newer businesses with at least $250,000 in annual revenues and three non-family employees. This program is heavily facilitated by SCORE San Diego mentors in hopes that its members will grow enough to move on to CEO Forums.

At each forum, 10 to 12 business owners from non-competing companies offer support and share advice on challenges most small businesses encounter. With help from SCORE San Diego facilitators, forum attendees are offered problem-solving techniques to overcome issues without having to pay exorbitant consultant fees.