New social services business thriving with help of NIC ISBDC

Erin Yinger is not one to jump into a new venture blindly. That’s why, when she decided to open her own business she sought the help of the Idaho Small Business Development Center (ISBDC), based at North Idaho College’s Workforce Training Center in Post Falls.
Yinger had the background knowledge needed to take the next step.
She had begun her mental health career in residential youth treatment in Spokane while working toward degrees in both psychology and sociology at Whitworth College. She went on to earn a master’s degree in community agency counseling and has been a licensed professional counselor since 2001.
It was after four years as a psychosocial rehabilitation provider and service coordinator with Alternative Community Enrichment Services (ACES) and Powder Basin Associates, coordinating the adult mental health program, that she decided she wanted to go into business for herself.
She sought business coaching from the ISBDC in September 2005. The ISBDC aims to help Idaho businesses thrive and grow through no-cost business consulting and coaching, low-cost business workshops and seminars and providing valuable business resources intended to assist entrepreneurs in building more effective businesses.
ISBDC Business Coach Frank Bendinelli worked with Yinger to help her refine her business concept and to develop a three-year plan for her business. The ISBDC encouraged her to perform market research to identify a target market and she developed a financial statement to detail start up and operating costs, which helped her successfully obtain a line of credit.
“Assistance from an ISBDC coach, Frank, was instrumental in the development of a business plan, guidance about what business issues to think about in a realistic manner while seeking funding, what to expect when starting a business, issues to anticipate and goal setting,” Yinger said. “I recognize that without this guidance, assistance and follow up, things may not have gone as well.”
In January 2006, Yinger opened A New Hope Social Services at 202 E. Anton, Suite 206, in Coeur d’Alene. With services based in psychosocial rehabilitation and counseling, the social services agency is dedicated to helping clients increase dependence and self-reliance in coping with mental illness through community partnerships and collaboration.
With assistance from the ISBDC, Yinger was able to successfully grow her client base from start up to more than 70 clients in a year of operation. She has hired 15 new full-time employees during that time and has doubled the size of her facility to accommodate new staff and clients.
Business plans for 2007 include hiring an additional eight employees, bringing staffing to 23 full-time employees with estimated gross revenues of $625,000.
Contact A New Hope Social Services at (208) 667-6095 or the ISBDC at (208) 666-8009.

For More Information
NIC Idaho Small Business Development Center Regional Director Bill Jhung, (208) 769-3284

Posted: Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2007

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