New survey wants to know the needs of rural small business owners in southeast Colorado

Courtesy Southern Colorado Economic Development District
Shauna Boyd, owner of Boyd’s Bookkeeping and Administrative Services (center), leads a Pueblo Food Project Startup Inaugural Entrepreneur Development Class of 2022 training as a member of the Southern Colorado Community Navigator Pilot Program small business service provider consortium.

The results of a new survey will be used to design and develop education programs for independently-owned businesses in at least seven counties on the southeast Plains including Kiowa, Las Animas and Otero.

Jacqueline Armendariz Unzueta with the Southern Colorado Economic Development District (SCEDD) said the effort is part of her office's mission to reach underserved small businesses. 

"If there's anything to call out about this type of small business it's that, in the southeastern Plains, when a small business closes, that has a cascade effect that's frankly more profound than a business closing maybe somewhere along the Front Range," she said.

The survey asks what businesses and services are missing in these areas and about potential business ideas. There are also questions related to demographics, financial needs and whether business owners are looking for capital or funding. 

It's sponsored, in part, by Energize Colorado, a non-profit that supports small businesses across the state. Maisie Wingerter with Energize Colorado says the survey is aimed at organizations, individuals and business owners — because it's about making sure the region fosters successful business.

"We have lots of resources that can help you," she said. "Or we can connect you to different partner organizations that can help you."

The survey will be open for the next few months.