IN PERSON OFFICE HOURS
3 days / week
24 / 7
twice / month
The PATH curriculum is designed to serve both the business & personal needs of our clients, and to develop both the business and personal skills that clients will need to grow a successful business. The curriculum helps clients and guides work within a client's current budget & life-situation while offering a pathway to capital if needed and to profitability. Both the client & guide curricula are available to other community or economic development organizations; if you are interested in incorporating the PATH curriculum into a program in your community lets talk.
The PATH client-curriculum supports early stage or pre-start entrepreneurs that qualify as low to moderate income and live in a neighborhood where the majority of residents also qualify as low to moderate income. The PATH guide-curriculum supports the volunteer business leaders & executives that work with our clients. Most of the guides work at the banks that support the program financially.
The curriculum consists of two workbooks, a knowledge-resource catalog, an online work-space and suite of office software tools, and an online business planning & building tool set.
Workbooks: Both the client and the guide get a role-specific workbook that tells them what to expect, what the parameters of the program are, provides recommendations to help develop rapport quickly, and provides a place to record their goals & progress through the program.
Resource catalog: Is place where clients and guides can go to help answer many of the questions that early stage business owners have and find other sources of information and services that can assist the client in hitting their goals.
Online work-space: Provides access to common office software tools that clients will need to run a modern business, a business email account, private cloud-hosted data storage, and a VOIP phone service so clients can have a separate business phone #.
Business-planning & building tools: Are a customized version of the OpsTools suite
that help clients work through the process of validating the financial and other potential of their business concept, creating a functional business model, and creating a business plan that would be accepted by lenders.
Because systemic change requires a system. We want to see thousands of lives changed, and for that to happen we cant be the magic that makes it work. We use a standardized but flexible process and curriculum so our work can be duplicated in communities across the country.
There are so many hard-working, side-hustling, never-give-up intuitive entrepreneurs out there that don't speak the language of traditional business and don't trust the systems that make them 'legit'. If we can help them make real changes in their lives, they can make real changes in their communities. If a few people in each city will take some time to teach these off-books businesses how to get into the on-books economy and teach them how to access resources and capital we can make a real difference in systemic poverty and remove some of the systemic barriers that divide us from our neighbors.
The PATH program runs year-round with ongoing 'enrollment' so clients don't have to wait for a particular start date to get help. Most clients take 6-8 months to work through the program but may continue to receive some degree of help or support from our team for over a year. Our staff is available 3 days half-days per week for drop in or scheduled office hours where clients can get help with or work on whatever goal or project they have going at the time. Different clients work and understand at different speeds, we don't make them all fit the same schedule.
PATH staff holds 'office hours' and client training at the WT Small Business Development Center in downtown Amarillo until renovations to our location on 6th ave. are complete. Once renovations are complete we will offer a mixed-use co-working space for clients, a commercial kitchen and possibly a small retail storefront to help clients sell their products. The WT SBDC has been an excellent partner and having meetings in their offices helps PATH clients get comfortable working in a professional office environment. Plus, interacting with the SBDC staff makes it easier for our clients to go to the SBDC for ongoing consulting once they are out of the PATH program.
By being honest and open with our clients, by genuinely caring about both their successes and their failures, by reminding them that they as people are not just the sum of their circumstances, by challenging them to rise to the occasion, by casting a vision for what life could look like on the other side of poverty, by helping them see themselves as worthy of success, by teaching them things they didn't think they could learn, by loving our neighbors as ourselves and treating them they way we would want to be treated if we were in their shoes.