What We Do
Interise is passionate about growing existing small businesses in order to support communities—and we have found a crucial niche to fill. The vast majority of small business programs are aimed at start-ups, 80% of which will fail. We decided to create a program for the other 20% of business owners that succeed.
We start with motivated small business owners and give them access to the right entrepreneurial education, connections, and coaching. We provide an atmosphere that encourages success and accountability. We work hand-in-hand with our entrepreneurs as they develop three-year Strategic Growth Action Plans™ for their companies.
And when you’ve completed the training, there is ongoing support. You can tap into our growing network, take seminars, and lend a hand to other entrepreneurs. Success builds success—and that’s our goal.
Home of the StreetWise ‘MBA’™
Interise developed the StreetWise ‘MBA’™ to give small business owners in historically underserved and lower income areas the tools, training, and networks to turn plans into action. When you participate, your company becomes a live case study. Over the course of approximately nine months, you work with experts and peers on business development and strategic planning, learn about access to capital and government contacts, and get a hands-on education on financials, marketing and sales, and human resources.
It’s a way to focus your goals, maximize your time, and make a big leap forward.
How do you make a good thing better?
Our experience running the StreetWise ‘MBA’™ program led us to consider how we could scale up the program to make it available to more small businesses across the country. To do this, we discovered we needed the right instructors to deliver the right curriculum to the right businesses, while stringently evaluating the impact. We developed a robust curriculum, which would deliver consistent content, and went looking for partners with the same goals and hands-on approach.
Fast forward several years, and the StreetWise 'MBA'™ curriculum is now available in more than 30 communities nationwide. Over 90% of our graduates represent women- or minority-owned businesses, or are located in a low- to moderate-income census tract.
We are proud that through these partnerships, more small businesses are gaining access to the knowledge and know-how that helps them grow their companies, create jobs, and build communities.
Using this model, more than 1,200 entrepreneurs in 32 communities use our StreetWise 'MBA'™ curriculum to grow their businesses.
“I was feeling a bit discouraged with the business outlook during the 2008/09 recession when I started the program. I struggled to fully understand how to best manage my business in those challenging times. The program taught me financial assessment tools, and gave me the discipline and motivation I needed, as well as a unique opportunity to learn from my peers.”
Maureen Sakakeeny, CEO, SAK Environmental
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