Microsoft Set to Kick off Major Event for Small Business Owners Across the Country

A week of free workshops, content, webcasts, events, and more

women business owners
(Image: iStock.com/andresr)

Small businesses account for 55% of employment in the U.S., according to the Small Business Administration. And the 28 million small business owners and entrepreneurs in the U.S. are at the forefront of innovation—fueling growth and creating jobs across the nation. African American entrepreneurs are just as big a part of this influence and Microsoft Store wants to do its part to help. A recent Babson College report found black business owners are creating businesses at a higher rate than other groups.

That’s something Microsoft is looking forward to celebrating during the 2017 National Entrepreneurship Week (NEW).

On Feb. 20, the global brand kicks off a full week of free workshops, content, webcasts, events, and more from a large community of supporters including Wix, Yelp, LinkedIn, Dun & Bradstreet, and many more.

A calendar of the most highly anticipated activities can be found below, but be sure to check www.entrepreneurshipweek.com for regular updates, resources, exciting new content, and special offers throughout the week.

Microsoft is encouraging business owners to boost their business productivity by taking advantage of the specials and discounts offered by many of the National Entrepreneurship Week supporters. For example, Microsoft is offering 10% off select Surface and Windows 10 Pro devices during National Entrepreneurship Week; to find out more, visit your local Microsoft Store from Feb 20–26.

National Entrepreneurship Week, February 20-24

Monday, Feb. 20

Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Women in Business: Women-owned businesses account for nearly $1.4 trillion in revenue, and female entrepreneurs employ nearly 7.9 million people in the U.S.

Visit a Microsoft Store near you

Throughout the week, all Microsoft Store locations are offering a variety of in-person events and resources, including panels, networking, productivity tips and more.

12 p.m. ET – Join a Twitter chat with Anita Campbell, CEO of Small Business Trends

Don’t miss out on a chance to ask questions and share insights during a fun and fast-paced Twitter chat using #WININBIZ.

Tuesday, Feb. 21

Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Made in the USA: In today’s economic climate, American-made products resonate most with consumers. In fact, 80% of consumers prefer to pay more for a product if it means supporting American jobs.

10 a.m. ET –  Watch the kickoff event

National Entrepreneurship Week officially kicks off with a live broadcast event in New York City. Scott Duffy will emcee the event, and speakers include representatives from major corporations including Microsoft, Wix, Square, Yelp, and others. (Webcast will stream directly from the main website.)

6 p.m. ET – Join Facebook Live interview from the Wix Lounge

As a part of National Entrepreneurship Week, I’ll be participating in a discussion on how you can transform your business with modern technology. Hear tips and tricks for launching your company and see the latest affordable tech tools from Microsoft and Wix to better connect with your customers.

Wednesday, Feb. 22

Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Youthpreneurs: Children today were born with technology and the world, by extension, at their fingertips. Naturally, these youthpreneurs are some of the most talented and creative business minds in the world.

12 p.m. ET – Free webinar: Learn the power of referral marketing

Tapping into your existing customer base could be the key to new business growth. On the next episode of Office Small Business Academy, learn about the power of referral marketing, and how to design a program that works for your business.

On-demand – Free demo: YourInterprise CloudShip Business Operations Workshop

Try this on-demand, interactive, 30-day demo of the Microsoft cloud business operations vehicles with previews of the new Windows 10 devices (CloudShips) for 2017. All attendees who sign up for the 30-day workshop will have a chance to win a free one-year subscription to Office 365 home for five users!

Thursday, Feb. 23

Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Boomerpreneurs: According to a Kauffman Foundation study, the baby boomer generation is twice as likely to enter entrepreneurship as millennials. And due to their experience, they also are the age group most likely to succeed.

1 p.m. ET – Free webcast: 3 tips for remaking your online professional presence

Join experts from Microsoft and Yelp to learn more about the tools experts use to boost their businesses, such as how to:

  • Create a complete Yelp profile to boost your SEO and attract more customers
  • Be more professional in your customer interactions using customized email and document templates created in Office 365
  • Enable your customers to book online appointments directly with you using Microsoft Bookings

6 p.m. ET – Wix and Microsoft present Women in Entrepreneurship panel

Bringing together women entrepreneurs from all walks of life, this event will highlight the triumphs and tribulations women-owned small businesses face. Ramon Ray of Smart Hustle Magazine will moderate a panel of talented small business owners and deliver actionable tips to get your business off the ground and growing.

Friday, Feb. 24

Visit the Microsoft SMB blog for content on Innovation: With thousands of new companies being launched every day, startups can’t afford to rest on their laurels and take the chance to not experiment or innovate. They must keep their eyes and ears firmly on what is happening around you in the market and keep a check on what your competitors are doing.

2:30 p.m. ET – CreativeLive webcast

Tune in for an exciting webcast with Scott Duffy, author and entrepreneurship expert and Chase Jarvis, director, artist, innovator, entrepreneur and co-founder of CreativeLIVE, a streaming education website offering over 1,500 courses on subjects such as entrepreneurship, photography, and video. Chase and Scott will be joined by more than a dozen influential entrepreneurs including Naveen Jain, T.A. McAnn, JJ Ramberg, Greg Reid, Alex Brown and Brian Smith.

8 a.m. ET [Atlanta area] – Get the Microsoft Office 365 Business Advantage

Join us for an event designed especially for budding entrepreneurs and early stage startups. You will enjoy:

  • A keynote by Scott Duffy, a best-selling author, entrepreneur, and brand ambassador
  • Local Microsoft Partner Clair Dohn from NetWeb Computer Consulting who will be talking about the Microsoft Office 365 Business Advantage for Small Businesses
  • An opportunity to network with other local startups and entrepreneurs and win prizes

***

Dr. Dionne Mahaffey is an Atlanta-based writer, business psychologist, and founder of The WhereU app. Follow her on Twitter @ATLcelebrity @WhereUCameFrom