The Worthington Daily Globe recently reported on businesses getting smarter about their use of online tools with the help of the University of Minnesota Extension’s Center for Community Vitality. (The U of M Extension is a project partner in the Minnesota Intelligent Rural Communities initiative (MIRC). The work of the coalition focuses on bringing the full promise of broadband technologies to rural Minnesota communities, businesses and people. Blandin Foundation serves as the project administrator.)
The U of M Extension has been surveying businesses in the area to see who is online, what they are doing and if they aren’t online, why aren’t they. The article reports…
“At least 70 percent of the businesses that have responded have a website,” said [Julie] Foote of the work already completed. Some, she said, are “selling widgets out the front door and, out the back, they’re selling them globally.” The next step is to offer training to businesses who are interested in learning more.
Already, MIRC has scheduled several classes catered to the local business community, from an introduction to doing business on the Internet to an introduction to e-commerce, online marketing and social networking. The hour-long classes will be offered at Minnesota West Community and Technical College, Worthington campus.
Future classes will target more specific training, such as building and maintaining websites and blogs, mapping, e-commerce, roadside advertising in a digital age and taking advantage of business banking capabilities. The programs, led by certified trainers through the U of M, are offered at no cost to businesses and their employees. While this article focuses on Nobles and Jackson counties, training is happening in areas around the state.
We’re working on a centralized calendar of events – but in the meantime you might check with your Chamber, EDA or other organizations in your area that provide business training.