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Cultivate Indy is a program that helps individuals discover their entrepreneurial dreams and achieve their goal of starting and running a successful small business. Beginning at the development phase, Cultivate Indy walks participants through the entire process from idea to launch to growth. Participants will advance through stages using BeanStack, a web and app-based program that allows them to complete requirements at a convenient pace for them. Requirements are broken down into phases: Development, Business Plan, Business Formation, Marketing, and Growth. At each stage are built-in checkpoints for participants to check-in and receive feedback. Participants will also earn membership incentives such as memberships to FabLab ICC, Independence Chamber of Commerce, and Independence Main Street.

Click Here to Register For Your Cultivate Indy Journey!

Cultivate Indy Details

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Register for the Cultivate Indy Small Business Program. This program is designed to empower you to achieve your entrepreneurial dream of starting a small business.

Start Your Journey Here!

Demographic Survey

Cultivate Indy is funded through a grant from the American Library Association, and In order for the Independence Public Library to report to our grant funders, we need some demographic information from you!


The Development phase will walk you through how to formulate and flesh out your product or service.

Activities Include:

  • Design Thinking
  • Discussion
  • Attend a Design Thinking workshop
  • Market Research
  • Prototype Product/Service
  • Meet with Library Staff


The key to a successful business is having a plan. In this phase of the Cultivate Indy program you will work to develop a business plan for your small business.

Activities Include:

  • Attend a Small Business Workshop
  • Business Structure
  • Name Your Business
  • Discussion
  • Write your Business Plan
  • Submit your Business Plan for feedback
  • Meet with Library Staff
  • Revise your Business Plan


Business formation is a necessary early step when starting a business, whether you’re registering a simple “Doing Business As,” incorporating or forming a partnership. The way in which your business is formed will determine the personal liability of the founders, how taxes are paid, and other important details.

Activities Include:

  • Discussion
  • Register your Business
  • Get State and Federal Tax ID’s
  • Open a Business Bank Account
  • Apply for local, state, and federal licenses (If applicable)
  • Set up an Accounting System
  • Find Funding for your Business
  • Identify your Business Location
  • Attend a Tax Workshop
  • Meet with Library Staff


Empower yourself to apply clever marketing plans and ideas without breaking the bank, or your back. This phase of the Cultivate Indy course will help you develop your marketing plan.

Activities Include:

  • Discussion
  • Develop a Marketing Plan
  • Attend an IPL Marketing Workshop
  • Attend a Destination Business Workshop
  • Meet with Library Staff


Successfully scaling a business is all about doing the fundamentals and having the stamina to see it through. The final phase of Cultivate Indy will help set you up for growing your business.

Activities Include:

  • Discussion
  • Read the article “15 Ways to Grow Your Business Fast”
  • Evaluate your Business Plan
  • Evaluate your Marketing Plan
  • Meet with Library Staff


Congratulations, you have completed the Independence Public Library’s Cultivate Indy, Small Business Program! Throughout this program, IPL will grant you 1-year memberships to Fab Lab ICC, Independence Chamber of Commerce, and Independence Main Street. These year-long membership grants will be based on your programs, and meeting the membership requirements for each organization.

Entrepreneurial Courses

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