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Client Success Story: Small-Business Owner in Training

Walter Prescher, BridgingApps Digital Navigator, shares the story of a client’s journey finding the best digital options to manage a small business and expand her career.

young adult women with headphones smiling at laptop

Q: For many people today, the best work-from-home option is a business they build and run themselves. Do you have a current client with their own small business?

Walter Prescher: Cathey O. is a single mom who recently reentered the workforce. She has a salaried position teaching preschool in the Brazos Valley; and she also owns a small business that makes bakery confections such as custom-decorated cookies and chocolate-covered pretzels.

Q: Just about every business these days, from the mega-corporation to the independent contractor and the one-person shop, needs up-to-date digital technology to run effectively. What technology was Cathey O. using when she started her baking business? And what new options did you, as a Digital Navigator, introduce her to?

Walter: When Cathey first became a client, she didn’t have an actual computer, and was doing her best to manage her business, pay its bills, and handle all other computing needs from a smartphone. Our Digital Navigation services started by finding her a refurbished laptop.

Q: How is she using that laptop in her business? Did she need much digital-skills training there: any specific systems or apps that are proving particularly useful in keeping records, managing accounts, tracking supply/demand, and the like?

Walter: We’re currently working on skills training for both Microsoft Office and the Google Suite. Cathey is developing better management skills for her small business, skills that include:

  • Using Google Pages to take orders
  • Tracking inventory and basic expenses with Google Sheets
  • Generating professional-looking invoices through Google Docs.

Q: Is she getting any other benefits from the new technology?

Walter: She’s also using the laptop to take a program which will get her certified as a Child Development Associate (CDA). Once that’s completed, it will open doors to expanded employment opportunities.

Q: What are Cathey O.’s plans for the future? 

Walter: With new devices and continued digital skills training, she looks forward to continued growth: professionally, economically, and personally. Cathey will further expand her knowledge in the child-care field, while also building her confection business into a better income source for supporting herself and her family.

Watch this blog for more Client Success Stories. Coming in March: a Story involving Down syndrome, to recognize Down Syndrome Awareness Day on March 21. (Trivia bit: the 3/21 date was chosen because Down syndrome is due to “trisomy 21,” or having a 3rd copy [one more than typical] of the 21st genetic chromosome.)   

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