Although Los Angeles wears the glorified crown of being the entertainment capital of the world and the second most populous city in the United States after New York City, it also carries another distinction according to a report recently released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Los Angeles has clinched the title of becoming the nation’s leading producer of pink slips, those layoff notices more than 27,000 local employees received during the first quarter of 2013.
As the metro area continues to struggle with epic cutbacks, educational institutions are now seeing an increase in the number of business-minded operatives determined to seize greater control of their financial stability.
“Many find that by learning business skills, they can build a profitable and exciting future by starting and operating their own business,” says Dr. Roger L. Torneden, director of business, management and legal programs at UCLA Extension, a comprehensive higher education provider. “I think many men and women have more capabilities and undeveloped strengths than they think.”
Dr. Torneden has created more than 30 new courses to help address job-related concerns of the 1,300 students that enroll in his fields of study on a quarterly basis. He says laid-off workers may want to consider apprenticing at a small establishment to acquire advantageous tricks of the trade.
“There are tens of thousands of businesses that have only an owner or an owner with one to three employees,” says Dr. Torneden. “No one is born with all the know-how to build a successful business, but this knowledge can be learned from others.”
Dr. Torneden issues stern advice to accomplished men seeking to lead their own destiny. “Quickly launching a new business carries needless high risks of failure,” says Dr. Torneden. “Put to paper your game plan and develop action steps and timelines. Don’t be afraid to admit you need to learn more about accounting, finance, marketing or other business success drivers.”
The highly credentialed personal financial planning instructor also offers words of concentrated wisdom to women who hold an undergraduate degree and a desire to become a chief executive officer of their own company. “Reach out. Talk to other small business owners. Find out how they started their businesses and overcame problems to succeed,” says Dr. Torneden. “Talk with your potential clients about your planned business and get comfortable with what you will provide them and what price they’d be willing to pay.
“Figure out what else you need to know to build success with your business vision and then go out and get it or network toward it,” says Dr. Torneden. “Much can be learned by tapping into the intelligence of others, thereby avoiding costly mistakes.”
Sharon Raiford Bush is an award-winning journalist who covers topics of social interest in greater Los Angeles. Some news articles she has authored have been archived by the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. Sharon also contributes to Examiner.com.