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"Business Breakthrough" a Success

Release Date: August 24, 2011

Sixty Northwest business owners gathered in Portland, Oregon this month for a three day-long GSA seminar called Business Breakthrough, to learn tools and tricks for growing their business through government contracting.

Business Breakthrough is a national training program managed by GSA that is free to qualified business owners. Held in cities throughout the U.S., Business Breakthrough is an opportunity for small and medium businesses with basic knowledge of government contracting to gain an in-depth understanding of how to do business with GSA.

The Portland seminar included three days of classroom instruction and hands-on learning. Instructors Melody Smith and Linda Mitchell walked attendees through a GSA 101 presentation to ensure all participants understood the basic principles of doing business with GSA. Hands-on activities included reviewing real contract proposals to identify common mistakes, and collaboration between attendees to craft and critique draft proposals. Subject matter experts from GSA’s Public Buildings Service and Federal Acquisition Service were on-hand to answer technical questions and offer insights for making a high quality contract offer.

Attendees had the opportunity to meet several national GSA leaders, as well as the entire GSA Region 10 leadership team, underscoring the agency’s commitment to our private-sector partners. Speakers included Assistant Commissioner of Acquisition Management Houston Taylor, Northwest/Arctic Regional Administrator George Northcroft and Associate Administrator for Small Business Utilization Jiyoung Park.

Networking is a critical element of business development, and Portland attendees had plenty of time to get to know one another. A brown bag lunch and networking happy hour – in addition to informal conversation and mixing opportunities – helped Northwest business owners meet potential partners and mentors in their field.

The sixty graduates of the Portland Business Breakthrough program will stay in touch with GSA through regular surveys, to share how they’ve progressed after participating in the program.

Next month, Business Breakthrough is headed to Denver, Colorado and Fort Worth Texas.

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