(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) For Jessica Estes of St. Joseph, opening up her new business A&R Workshop was literally a project of creating something out of nothing.
"I am just a D-I-Y'er art heart. I wanted to have a space where people can come and be creative," Estes said.
The shop on the N. Belt Highway lets people come in and use on-hand supplies to create their own hand-crafted home decor and other decorative items.
However, as a registered nurse by trade, Estes needed some help turning her vision of a creative space-turned business into a reality.
"Even though you have an idea, you really need to put it in a plan," said Annette Weeks, director of Missouri Western's Center for Entrepreneurship. " You need to think it through. It needs to be part of a feasibility study."
With the Center's help, Estes got her project off the ground. A&R Workshop is now another one of the Center's success stories. Estes is one of more than 500 new and existing entrepreneurs who have taken advantage of the Center's free consulting services.
Weeks said she was excited for the opportunity to work with Estes.
"It was great to see something start out as just a nugget of an idea and come to fruition in the success of a business like this," she said.
City leaders say they recognize the value in successful small businesses to the overall health of the local economy and community.
"We know when we have that local owner here who's kids are going to school here, who are in the PTA's here, they're going to be giving back to our community," said Natalie Redmon with the St. Joseph Chamber of Commerce.
After going through the process and getting A&R Workshop opened, Estes has advice for other would-be entrepreneurs.
"Set goals and if it was something you always wanted to do then what are you waiting for?"
Weeks said the Center for Entrepreneurship can also assist with financing to get a new start-up business opened.
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