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Connecticut businesswoman provides outlet for other entrepreneurs

When a Connecticut woman was laid off from her full-time job, she was given severance pay but needed more. She decided to start her own small business, a line of purses and accessories called Thirty-One Gifts. Expecting this side project to be a part-time gig, she was surprised when the business took off. As more and more work came in, it grew increasingly difficult to continue working out of her home, where her family also lived. She needed a space of her own.

The entrepreneur realized that she was probably not alone. Many women, she thought, were probably in her same position, trying to run a business from their homes while juggling kids, laundry and other tasks. That's when she came up with the idea to open a workspace where women could rent a desk for a few hours or more to focus on work without the distractions that a home can bring.

Eventually she opened the Center for Collaborative Women in Monroe. Today, about 300 women rent space regularly. Women can pay as little as $31 a month to use a shared workspace, or spend more to have their own desk. In addition to providing a place to focus on work, the center also provides classes that anyone can take. 

Entrepreneurs like this woman possess unique sets of skills and characteristics that help better our communities. When starting a business, however, it is important to make sure all of the details are taken care of. Properly labeling your business, making sure contracts are secure and determining a good business plan can help ensure that entrepreneurs succeed. 

Source: ctpost.com, "Monroe entrepreneur creates professional workspace for women," Makayla Silva, July 12

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