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LED Seeks Small and Emerging Businesses for 2022 Roundtables Program

Successful LED peer-to-peer learning initiative helps companies and their leaders grow

SEBD Roundtables participants meet 10 times throughout the year to exchange best practices and address business challenges. Above: a 2021 Roundtable session in Lake Charles. (LED photo)

BATON ROUGE, La. —  The recruitment process has started for LED’s SEBD Roundtables, the innovative peer-to-peer learning program that brings small and emerging business leaders together for a yearlong experience of collaborative learning, problem solving and professional development.

SEBD Roundtables is based on the PeerSpectives™ Roundtable System developed by the Edward Lowe Foundation and considered a nationwide best practice. Participation is open to both current and prospective Small and Emerging Business Development (SEBD) program participants. The roundtables convene in July and August; each cohort meets 10 times throughout the year to explore best practices, share business challenges and brainstorm solutions in a supportive environment.

“The SEBD Roundtables program is a unique resource among many that the state offers Louisiana’s small business community,” LED Secretary Don Pierson said. “It provides an opportunity to evolve as a leader, expand your network and deepen your understanding of the challenges and rewards that come with running a business. I encourage SEBD participants and other small and emerging business owners to take full advantage.”

Through roundtable discussions, small business leaders work collaboratively to enhance management skills, improve decision-making, and identify strengths and opportunities for improvement.

“Being part of the SEBD roundtable allowed me to see business from different perspectives,” said Lameika Washington, president of Diamond Security Services in Baton Rouge. “Interacting with like-minded individuals revealed different ways to handle challenges that we may not have thought would fit into our business model. Coming together, realizing the similarities in the barriers we all faced and helping each other during roundtables helped me grow my company.”

SEBD intermediaries deliver technical and managerial assistance through the LED program and are certified to ensure a consistent experience. Current and prospective SEBD Program participants Interested in taking part in the Roundtables should contact the nearest SEBD Intermediary listed below for details about the application process:

  • Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, New Orleans
  • Microbusiness Enterprise Corporation of Ascension, Gonzales
  • Small Business Development and Management Institute, Southern University, New Orleans
  • Small Business Development Center, Southeastern Louisiana University, Hammond
  • Small Business Development Center, Southern University, Baton Rouge
  • Small Business Development Center, Southern University, Shreveport
  • Small Business Development Center, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Lafayette
  • Small Business Development Center, University of Louisiana Monroe, Monroe
  • St. John the Baptist Parish in collaboration with the Small Business Development Center, Greater New Orleans and Bayou Region, New Orleans
  • Southwest Louisiana Partnership for Economic Development, Lake Charles
  • TruFund Financial Services, Baton Rouge
  • Urban League of Louisiana, New Orleans

For more information, contact LED Senior Program Manager Tatiana Bruce at Tatiana.Bruce@la.gov or 225.342.5663.

About LED
Louisiana Economic Development is responsible for strengthening the state’s business environment and creating a more vibrant Louisiana economy. It is the only state agency in the U.S. accredited by the International Economic Development Council, boasting a wide range of award-winning programs and projects routinely ranked among the nation’s best. In 2021, LED attracted 64 new economic development projects representing over 18,100 new direct and indirect jobs, 9,700 retained jobs and more than $20.5 billion in new capital investment. Explore how LED cultivates jobs and economic opportunity for the people of Louisiana, and promotes business opportunity for employers of all sizes at OpportunityLouisiana.com.