Helping Others Find Peace of Mind
Kim Bingaman first contacted the Penn State Small Business Development Center in September 2014. She had recently become aware that a local retail store was for sale. She has always harbored the entrepreneurial spirit, which served her well in her position as the business and health editor for a local newspaper. This seemed like a good opportunity for her, so she reached out to the seller to learn more about the business.
After meeting with the seller, she reached out to the Penn State SBDC to help her decide if purchasing the business was feasible. Her business consultant analyzed the historical financial statements from the business, and worked through several different possible scenarios, involving different purchase prices and debt structures.
After reviewing the scenarios, Kim realized that she would need to invest a significant amount of time and grow the business’s revenues substantially in order to allow her to replace her current income, and she wasn’t willing to make that commitment.
As Kim continued working as the health and business editor at the newspaper, she came in contact with many business owners and individuals every week. Many of these business owners expressed frustration that they just didn’t have time to do everything that they needed to do. While they were focusing on taking care of customers, other aspects of the business were overlooked. Individuals would tell her that they were so busy that they didn’t have time to get things done around their house, and things were a mess.
Kim saw this as an opportunity. She had always been proud of her organizational skills, and actually enjoyed digging into a mess and getting it straightened up. Before working for the newspaper, she had been an office manager for a local business, where she put her degree in marketing and her bookkeeping skills to good use. She took the plunge and turned in her two-week notice and formed A Place for Everything Home and Business Solutions.
On the business side, Kim offers general support for entrepreneurs. She can help them set up their bookkeeping system, as well as train staff in the proper use of it. If the company lacks a proper marketing plan, she will help them write ads and promotional materials. If a business’s office space isn’t meeting the needs of staff or their customers, she can make it user-friendly and welcoming.
For the “home” side, Kim’s philosophy is to do more than organizing; she provides peace of mind. She will tackle that messy closet, attic, basement, or garage and de-clutter, sort, and arrange to make it usable space. Before a home is put on the market, she can stage the place to make it appealing and help the seller receive a higher offer. If someone is downsizing and needs help moving into a smaller place, she works to make that a pain-free process. She can also help an individual create a personal budget and manage their finances.
Kim has reached out to the SBDC for assistance on several occasions, and her business consultant has provided assistance with legal and tax compliance, as well as general business support. She also views the SBDC as a great tool that she can use to help her business clients, referring them to the SBDC for one-on-one assistance as appropriate. The SBDC looks forward to working with Kim as she grows her business, helping more and more entrepreneurs and individuals make their lives a little easier and gain that peace of mind.