January 2011

To our friends in the business community, libraries today play a strong role in incubating small businesses by providing resources to help entrepreneurs make their dreams a reality.  Every day, we assist budding businesses through competitive research, funding leads, regulatory and licensing issues, and much more. 

Many emerging businesses in Frederick County owe their success in part to the resources at Frederick County Public Libraries, as highlighted  below. We invite you to visit for further information about our business services and/or attend one of our upcoming business-oriented programs.

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Darrell Batson, Director
Frederick County Public Libraries
In This Issue
How to Start Your Own Business
Lebherz Oil and Vinegar Emporium
270inc Business Magazine
Mid-Atlantic Clinic of Chiropractic
Keep in Touch
Funding for Nonprofits
Foundation Directory Online Database Orientation
Wednesday at  9 am
Jan. 26 and Feb. 23
C. Burr Artz Public Library
For details, visit fcpl.org
Chris Olson, Business Consultant, Small Business Development Center, Western Maryland

Learn about regulatory requirements, legal business structures to consider, how to begin, and money matters with Chris Olson. Classes are held each month at C. Burr Artz Public Library.  Register online at fcpl.org/programs or call the Information Desk at 301-600-1630 x3.

Chris Olson encourages the business community to take full advantage of all that FCPL offers-from books to online databases and more. "One of the keys to success in business is making informed decisions. The more information we have, the better informed we can be about how to control risk and take advantage of opportunities," he says. "FCPL's Business Resource Center is by far the best place I know for hopeful business owners to collect the kind of information they need to prepare them to be successful." 

One of the most helpful components of FCPL's Business Resource Center is the customized assistance available through Cisco Rodriguez, Business Resource Librarian. "Cisco knows what's there on the shelf and on the website, so would-be business owners don't even need to navigate it themselves. They can meet with him, tell him the type of information they are looking for, and he can help them find it, and suggest other resources they probably hadn't thought of," explains Olson.

Maggie Lebherz, Owner
Maggie Lebherz.

Maggie Lebherz, who recently opened Lebherz Oil and Vinegar Emporium in downtown Frederick, attended Olson's class when she was formulating her business plan. "It was a great place to start generating my business idea and a great resource for asking questions," she recalls. "It just felt like a resource of "like-minded" people. They wanted to help get me started, and everyone who attended the class felt comfortable because we were all there for the same reason."  


Lebherz checked out several books from the library on olive oil and vinegar so she could thoroughly train her staff to respond to customers' inquiries. The ...for Dummies series also proved helpful for her business planning, personnel, and accounting needs.

Harby Tran, Publisher and CEO

Harby Tran, publisher and CEO of 270inc Business Magazine and Rockwood Brown Advertising, frequently accesses the databases to create marketing plans, conduct competitive analyses, and find prospects. "Because we handle marketing strategy for many different types of businesses, we utilize the library for competitive and industry research. The librarians are always helpful and have an understanding of resources that are helpful to small businesses," Tran says, adding that business leaders should speak with FCPL's reference librarians to learn the extent of resources available. "There are many tools at our fingertips that can be used to enhance our efforts and grow our businesses."


One such tool is the free "How to Start Your Own Business" class, presented at C. Burr Artz Library throughout the year by Chris Olson, Business Consultant, Small Business Development Center, Western Maryland. An estimated 150 people have taken the class in 2010.

Dr. Amir Rashidian

When Dr. Amir Rashidian wanted to expand his chiropractic business, he wasn't sure where to begin. A visit to the Business Resource Center at C. Burr Artz Library proved to be the right place to find the information he needed.


Dr. Amir Rashidian

Rashidian, who now operates Mid Atlantic Clinic of Chiropractic in downtown Frederick, was pleased to discover databases with information on area chiropractic offices, their annual sales volumes, the percentage of Frederick residents who work in and outside the city, major employers in the area, cont

act information for local businesses' human resources staff, and more.


"It was amazing," Rashidian recalls. "With a little guidance at the library, you can expand, start a new practice or business...it really is phenomenal. If you're just coming into the city and don't know the area, you can do your research at the library and fit in a lot faster."


A quick glance at the Business Resource Center page on fcpl.org reveals the wide range of information available through Frederick County Public Libraries. Some of the most up-to-date material is found in the business databases, accessible free of charge with an FCPL card number. Reference USA, for example, is a database of more than 12 million businesses nationwide, with demographics about specific industries and/or business competitors. Another database, Business & Company Resource Center, is helpful for researching industry and economic trends, business case studies, and career and investment opportunities.  

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