All posts by tbdc5

Employee Loyalty

When someone mentions a “loyal employee,” what usually comes to mind is someone who has worked for the same company for many years.

As an entrepreneur building a startup, however, it is important to look beyond this assumption and find what truly exemplifies employee loyalty.

Jeff Haden, contributing editor at Inc. Magazine, wrote an article outlining signs to help identify employees who are loyal to the company and to you, their boss.

You can access this article here.

Deborah Inman, the director of the Center for Entrepreneurship and Information Technology at Louisiana Tech, recommends this article not only to help understand employee loyalty, but also to encourage entrepreneurs to consider how they will present themselves to their employees.

The article ends with this thought: “Be the kind of boss that earns loyalty because you are loyal — not in return, but first.”

“How I Built This”


Have you ever dreamt of building a successful business out of nothing? Or perhaps you are working on a startup now, and you dream of your idea becoming a movement that sweeps the world?

Some people make these dreams a reality, and one podcast collects their stories.

“How I Built This,” a podcast from National Public Radio, gathers some of the most successful business and brand owners, including numerous household names, and tells the stories of their rise to the top.

Kathy Wyatt, director here at the Technology Business Development Center, highly recommends “How I Built This” as an educational and entertaining resource for anyone working to lead and grow a new venture.

From Five Guys to TOMS to the “Shark Tank” personalities, check out how some of today’s most well-known companies and ideas were formed by CLICKING HERE


2015 Accelerator Program

Entrepreneurs striving to develop and grow innovative business enterprises in the coming year can benefit from the I-20 Corridor Regional Accelerator initiative. This program provides training, coaching and networking that facilitates strong and steady progress for new business ventures.

Accelerator participants connect with experienced executives, business professionals, coaches, peers, and potential customers to create a successful business model. Instruction on proven techniques, coaching throughout the startup process, assistance with funding needs and sources, and access to valuable resources is provided. Each entrepreneur is assisted with establishing and executing actions that achieve meaningful progress toward starting the venture.

The Accelerator is effective for individuals assessing the viability of business opportunities, entrepreneurs preparing to launch new enterprises, and existing ventures expanding their operations. Past participants are achieving success and continuing to grow. In 2014, one Accelerator graduate has secured over $1 million in funding, grown revenue by 80%, and increased employment from 14 to 29 workers. Others have received loans, secured equity investment, licensed products, increased revenue, and continued developing.

The program is free but space is limited and applicants must provide a summary of their proposed venture to be considered for the Accelerator. Meetings will be held in Ruston at University Hall on every other Tuesday at 5:30 PM beginning January 13. For more information, email or call (318) 257-3537. To apply for the Accelerator, follow either link below, complete the form, and submit application to or PO Box 3145, Ruston, LA 71272

I-20 Corridor Regional Accelerator Application Forms
Regional Business Accelerator Application Form in Microsoft Word
Regional Business Accelerator Application Form in Adobe
Some applicants are experiencing difficulties with the Adobe form. It may be necessary to open and save your form in Adobe Pro (not the Reader) in order for the content to be retained. We will also be glad to accept a printed copy of your application at the TBDC in the Rawle Enterprise Center at 509 W Alabama or by mail at PO Box 3145, Ruston, LA 71272.

I-20 Regional Accelerator Application

New Venture for the New Year

An Overview of a Business Accelerator Program

Tuesday, January 7, 2014
6:30 PM

University Hall
Ruston, LA


“New Venture for the New Year”

This event is an overview of a business accelerator program which helps entrepreneurs move their new venture forward. The accelerator program provides support for new and existing ventures to introduce new products or services.  The accelerator program includes focused training and networking that include industry feedback and expert coaching to help innovators ramp up operations. We are looking for entrepreneurs and innovators to participate in the program in the coming year.


Business Pitch Competition – Won in One!

The Technology Business Development Center is hosting a free business pitch competition on October 29, 2013. The business pitch competition will bring together entrepreneurs/aspiring entrepreneurs, angel investors, and business leaders from across north Louisiana. Each presenter is given sixty seconds to present an elevator pitch to the audience and a panel of judges. Prizes will be awarded to presenters based on judges’ choice and audience vote. The competition will be held at 7:00 p.m. in University Hall on Louisiana Tech campus following the Bulldog Entrepreneurs Top Dawg Idea Pitch Competition. Entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs are encouraged to register in advance, as there are only 30 presentation slots. Those registered before October 15 will be permitted to attend a pitch presentation training session for preparation. Additional registrants will be accepted to pitch in place of potential no-show presenters. For more information call or email Ann Marie Queen at 318-574-5421 or

Register  by emailing or calling Ann Marie Queen or by going to Eventbrite

“From Concept to Marketplace” Workshop

A workshop on the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Programs

Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013
8 AM until 3 PM

LA Tech University Shreveport Center
8028 Shrevepark Drive, Shreveport, LA


“From Concept to Marketplace”

Louisiana Tech University and the Louisiana Technology Transfer Office are sponsoring a workshop for individuals and organizations interested in performing research and obtaining funds to support proof of concept and prototype development for federal agencies.

The workshop will be conducted by Jim Greenwood, a nationally recognized SBIR/STTR consultant who has helped hundreds of firms improve their proposals and successfully compete for SBIR and STTR awards.

Attendees will receive:

  • an overview of the SBIR/STTR Programs
  • an explanation of the proposal preparation process
  • information about the review process, updates on recent changes in rules/regulations governing these programs, and research commercialization plans
  • information about the LA SBIR Phase Zero Program which offers $2000 in grant monies to qualified Louisiana companies/researchers to help with the cost of preparing and submitting a SBIR/STTR proposal
  • tips for success from SBIR winners
  • information about benefits for university research

This workshop is for select, small technology-oriented companies, entrepreneurs/innovators, and university research faculty/department heads that are capable of engaging in innovative, basic research & development with the specific goal to produce a product for market and one that is needed by the federal government. Innovative small businesses, entrepreneurs, inventors, research faculty, and university department heads that are conducting research and developing novel products or services which the federal government may deem valuable are encouraged to attend.

The first 35 paid attendees will be eligible for a FREE SBIR/STTR proposal review by Greenwood Consulting for up to one year from the workshop date, subject to availability.

Seating is limited and advance registration is required. The registration fee also includes materials and lunch.

Register by August 31 for $25.
Registration received between September 1 and September 11, will be $35.
On-site registration is $50.
Register by emailing, calling (318) 257-3537 or online at

Small Business Cybersecurity Workshop

A FREE Workshop that Helps Smaller Businesses Identify and Address Information Security Issues in a Practical and Affordable Manner

Thursday, September 19
8:00 AM – 12:00 NOON

Louisiana Tech – University Hall
Park at intersection of W Railroad Ave and Everett St


Computer Security for Small and Mid-Sized Businesses

Why is Computer Security Important?

Businesses which utilize computers for email and other online activities as well as invoices, payroll, employee data, client records, or proprietary information are potentially vulnerable to the threat of computer crime and innocent computing errors that may create tremendous inconvenience, produce substantial financial loss, or even end the life of the business.  Because this threat is real, significant, and growing, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is conducting workshops that help small and mid-sized business owners assess the security of their information and information systems in order to understand what safeguards are needed, weigh their potential for loss, and make sound investments in effective computer security solutions.

Who Needs to Attend?

This workshop is for the owners and key team members of small and mid-sized businesses.  You do not have to be an information technology or computer professional in order to understand the presentation.  You will gain an understanding about the security vulnerabilities of your business and receive information that allows you to determine what preventative and corrective measures are necessary.

What Will I Learn?

  • Understand basic information security practices for internet, email, desktop, and personnel
  • Identify information that needs to be protected and prioritize the need for protection
  • Assess security weakness, threats, vulnerabilities, and risks of information systems
  • Determine how much time and money is justified for information security
  • Create procedures to implement security policies that are established
  • Recognize what you can do yourself and what to look for when contracting IT professionals
  • Receive information about security technologies and recommended actions

To register, call (318) 257-3537.

Workshop for Women-Owned Businesses

“Making the Most of Your Woman-Owned Business Ownership in the Federal Government Marketplace”

Thursday, May 30, 2013
10:00 a.m. – Noon

Louisiana Tech University
University Hall, Room 111
Keeny Circle
Ruston, LA 71270

Session Overview:

Small business certifications are like professional certifications–they document a special capability or status that will help you compete in the marketplace. Unlike permits and licenses, you do not need to obtain certifications to legally operate. However, in order to take advantage of business opportunities such as government contracts, you may need to obtain certain certifications. Women business owners should seek to leverage the opportunities available through the federal government to drive revenue growth. This workshop will guide you in doing just that.

Topics Covered:

  • woman-owned small business federal government contract set-asides
  • final WOSB ruling and impact and advantage
  • eligible NAICS codes
  • WOSB certification process
  • identifying contract opportunities
  • effectively responding to requests for government proposal
  • completing required registrations
  • computer lab will be available to begin the WOSB certification process or CCR regisration process

For more information: call 504-589-2744 or 504-589-6688.

The bottom portion of the following flyer contains the registration form and instructions for turning it in.

WOSB Workshop Ruston 5.30.2013

HUBZone Boot Camp

HUBZone Boot Camp

Wednesday, May 29, 2013
1:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Louisiana Tech University
University Hall, Room 111
Keeny Circle
Ruston, LA 71270

The U.S. Small Business Administration invites you to the Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) Boot Camp. The HUBZone boot camp is designed to introduce your business to the program,and support the efforts of your business to participate in the program. The workshop is FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

Every year, the federal government awards over $500 billion in contracts. There is a statutory 23% goal of government-wide small business prime contracting and a required 3% goal for small businesses located in HUBZones. The SBA assists federal agencies in identifying and awarding contracts to small businesses.

The SBA encourages small businesses to learn more about the HUBZone and take advantage of this federal contracting opportunity!


The event is free and open to the public. To register for the event, please email: Registration and networking begins at 1:00 p.m.

For additional information, please visit: or call 504-589-6688 or 504-589-2744