Helping small businesses grow.

Work on your business, not just in your business.

The South Haven Region Business Hub’s Growth Series is designed for organizations at least 3 years old who want to grow. The process starts with technology called the Growth Wheel that identifies gaps and sets up a customized milestone-based plan for the organization to follow.

9 Workshops, One-on-One Mentoring, Business Coaching

Along with one-on-one individual mentoring during the 14 weeks participants will attend in-person workshops focusing on additional processes for consistency and growth not identified through the Growth Wheel.

14-Week Program (May-June)

Important dates

Friday, March 24

Application process opens to small business owners within Van Buren County.


Saturday, April 15 by 6 p.m.

Program applications are due via electronic or email submission.


  • Complete the online application and upload the requested documents to be considered for participation.
  • Once you submit your application and supporting documents, you will receive a confirmation email.
  • All applicants will be asked to prepare and present a 6-minute promotional pitch to the Planning Committee on Monday, May 1 to be selected as a final participant.

Monday May 1, 4-6 p.m. at Lake Michigan College SH

All Applicant Pitch Presentations

  • This is your initial “pitch” for your business to the Planning Team. You will need to come prepared and may use one visual aid but no projectors or electronic aids. Just you and your voice.
  • You will be notified on May 2 IF YOU HAVE BEEN SELECTED to participate in the Growth Series program.

For entrepreneurs who are ready to take their business to the next level.


  • Business Owner in Van Buren County, MI
  • Minimum 3 years in business
  • $100,000 in sales
  • At least one full-time employee


  • A written Strategic Plan
  • Financial documents
  • Website help and strategic marketing
  • A mentor
  • Access to multiple small business resources

9 Workshops, One-on-One Mentoring, Business Coaching


Session I—Monday, May 8, 4-6 p.m. at Lake Michigan College SH

Introduction to South Haven Region Hub Growth Series 2023.

Led by Debi Howe and Sandra Cochran

  • Participants are introduced to the Growth Wheel, the Strategic Plan, and their selected Mentor.
  • Complete Self-Assessment provided prior to attending.

*Mentor Meetings

Alternating Weeks, starting May 14, meet with mentor. In between workshops, one-on-one mentoring throughout the length of the program, set up and review milestones based on the Growth Wheel and self-assessment with assigned mentor.

Session 2—Wednesday, May 17, 4-6 p.m. at Lake Michigan College SH

Your Financials and How to Conduct an In-Depth Review
Led by 1st Source Bank

  • P&L, balance sheet.
  • Cash flow using participants documents.

Session 3—Thursday, May 18, 4-6 Lake Michigan College SH

One-to-one Live Financial Mentoring
Led by 1st Source Bank

  • You will meet, one-on one with a financial expert about YOUR financial documents.
  • You will need to bring financial information from Session 2 (Wednesday, May 17) with you.

Session 4—Wednesday, May 24, 4-6 p.m. at Lake Michigan College SH

Leadership Challenge
Led by Michael Neiss, Michael Neiss Consulting

  • Leadership assignments for the remaining part of the Growth Series.
  • Review of homework provided by the presenter before the session.

Session 5—Wednesday, May 31, 4-6 p.m. at Lake Michigan College SH

Developing your Customer Strategy for Your Product Mix
Led by Sarah Forrest, SW Michigan SBDC

  • Value proposition
  • Identifying your target market.

Session 6—Wednesday, June 7, 4-6 p.m. at Lake Michigan College SH

Marketing Tactics to Reach Your Target Markets
Led by Jennifer Sistrunk, South Haven/Van Buren County Convention & Visitors Bureau

  • Assignment: Complete the survey distributed by the speaker. A list will be circulated ahead of this session to identify what marketing tools participants are using now.
  • The South Haven Region Hub will advise participants on obtaining website design and a social and digital media implementation strategy.

Session 7—Wednesday, June 14, 4-6 p.m. Lake Michigan College SH

Integrity Selling
Led by Maria Sorrentino

  • Helping your clients understand the solution you bring to their problem.
  • Professional Persistence, keeping the funnel full.

Session 8—Wednesday, June 21, 4-6 p.m. at Lake Michigan College SH

Developing your Internal Processes for Consistency and Success
Led by Steven Cummings, SPC Consulting

  • Review the typical processes that every organization should have.
  • Participants will leave with a minimum of two processes completed.

Session 9—Wednesday, June 28, 4-6 p.m. Lake Michigan College SH

Final Pitch Instructions and Preparation
Led by Debi Howe

  • All participants will receive one-on-one assistance from their assigned mentor(s).
  • Developing a pitch overview and preparing for the pitch night with mentors.

TBD – Final Pitch Night (August 2023)

Inviting the entire community! Lake Michigan College SH

All South Haven Region Business Hub programs or co-sponsored events are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. Arrangements for persons with disabilities are made when requested two weeks in advance.

Thank you so much for the help. This wouldn’t have been possible without you. Am very grateful for your help and support and all the encouragement and positive vibes. God bless you!

—Isa Clark

I appreciate all that you do to support small businesses in the region. You are knocking it out of the park!

—Sonja A. Dean, Senior Program Officer, LISC

Thank you so much for your help and direction! Thank you so much for always being here for me to help, motivate, direct, and encourage me. Underground Hu$tle would really be nonexistent if it weren’t for you!  Thank you so much for being you and everything you continue to do.

—Jäquil Short

We look forward to seeing more programing and resources from the South Haven Region Business Hub.

—Josh Musinski, Water and Wheat, Vegan Chef Crafted Creations

WE GOT APPROVED FOR OUR NEW RESTAURANT!!! I can’t thank you enough for your guidance, mentorship, expertise, and motivation. We greatly appreciate your efforts towards the growth of Fruit Street Kitchen!

—Mo’Nique Crowley, Fruit Street Kitchen

Thank you for all your help as always I can’t sing your praises enough.

—Brent Wedding, Business Banking Relationship Manager, PNC Bank

I do appreciate your help with all my heart and am not particularly sure how to express the gratitude that dwells in my heart right now. Thank you and may you be blessed always!

—Isa Clark, Clark Special Kitchen

Can't thank you enough for being at my presentation this morning. I'm so thankful for absolutely everything you have done for me and The Donut Cart thus far. Thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you!

—Amber Gille, Realtor, The Donut Cart

Thank you so much; I knew when I met you, you were like an angel. I appreciate you so much and I won’t let you down. Your hard work in what you are doing in the community is appreciated.

—Jamie Bigby, Entrepreneur

I just wanted to say thank you for sharing so much information. I look forward to being able to be involved in this great networking experience. I really will call on your assistance for help with this Business Plan.

—Joanna Partee, Silver Fox Assistant, LLC


South Haven Region Business Hub - A partnership between the City of South Haven, the South Haven Area Chamber of Commerce, and Lake Michigan College. Powered by the South Haven Community Foundation.