Being an entrepreneur is a constant learning process. Whether you run a small brick and mortar business, a home business, or an online business, it’s unlikely that you entered into the self-employment game knowing everything about running a small business. That’s where free business educational sites and resources can come in, to teach entrepreneurs more about everything from marketing to accounting to business legal issues. Here are some of the best free business education sites for entrepreneurs:
US Small Business Administration – The SBA offers a variety of free online business courses for small business owners through partner companies covering a broad range of small business topics from writing a business plan and raising startup funding to building a business website and small business marketing.
The Small Business Administration is basically a one-stop-shop for free online business courses targeting small business owners. Whether you’re new to small business or just an entrepreneur wanting to brush up on the basics, the SBA’s website is a must for any business owner, especially if you’re located in the US (although many of the courses aren’t geographically specific).
Small Business Corporate Finance Learning Center – This small business legal issues site was literally just announced today by law firm, AbdulJaami, PLLC in New York. The law firm is offering free temporary access to several online business “courses” in .pdf format for the time being. However, the public access won’t last forever, so check out these small business legal courses while you can.
“We will eventually limit access to clients and registered prospective clients, once we add audio and video content,” according to Mr. AbdulJaami.
The available online courses are available in three categories including Corporate Finance, Trade Finance, and Project Finance, with courses ranging from negotiating shareholder agreements to business investments in real estate.
NOLO.com – NOLO is a publisher of legal books, many of which are written to but small business legal issues into laymen’s terms for entrepreneurs. There are several books available dealing directly with small business startups, including the Small Business Startup Kit and books explaining how to form various legal business structures, even based on location in some cases.
While you can purchase not only NOLO’s books, but also ebooks for instant access, there are quite a few free articles and resources available directly on the site dealing with business legal issues from human resources to startup legalities to intellectual property law.
MIT Open CourseWare – MIT offers free course materials such as lecture notes from many professors of this top school on the Web. While you can learn about anything from engineering to literature, small business owners can find some useful free business course materials from the Sloan School of Management as a part of this project.
Courses offer lecture notes, exams, and a listing of readings required during the past courses (to follow along with them, you would need to purchase a used textbook in some cases, while in other cases .pdf files are available with the readings). Available topics include everything from economics to accounting to the psychology of management.