Selling people on the value of diversity isn’t hard, says Toby Stansell, business leader with the Greenville Chamber of Commerce. The challenge is getting them to do something about it.
That’s why, he says, he and other Greenville leaders launched the Minority Business Accelerator program through the Greenville Chamber of Commerce, aimed at supporting the growth, development and capacity of minority-owned enterprises in the region.
Two years and two cohorts later, the program is still going strong, bringing in $3.4 million in additional contract opportunities and creating 67 jobs in the last year alone. Part of that is due to an in-depth business assessment and action plan that would help any type of small business, says program participant James Jordan, president of Jordan Construction Co. in Greenville. Another part relied heavily on getting to know people, and letting them get to know you.