Course image Business Skills: Creating a Business
Basic Professional Development and Business Skills
Course Summary:

Note: This course requires compulsory materials to be ordered. The book is available at GenealogyStore.com

  1. Mills, Elizabeth Shown, Professional Genealogy: A manual for researchers, writers, editors, lecturers and librarians (2001; reprint, Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, Inc., 2012).

Optional Print Course Material: Business Skills: Creating a Business

*Course material will only be sent to students who are registered in the course.

Creating a genealogical or personal historian business requires many steps. First, there is self-analysis to determine who you are, what you want, how to achieve balance in work and personal life, and what kind of business you wish to start. Next, you will need to conduct business and marketing planning, market analysis, and establish an overall business structure. Finally, you must consider what you need for your business including supplies, income, and marketing opportunities. A productivity tool chest will help round out your plans and get you off on the right footing. In this course you will learn the skills you need to accomplish all these things and prepare yourself for starting a successful business. 

This course assumes that you have intermediate or advanced in either genealogy skills or personal historian skills (i.e. family history research, writing, photography, audio and video recording, and/or interviewing) and that you want to use those skills to create a business. 

Course Length: 7 weeks

Contact Hours: 18
Grading Scale: 70% Tests/30% Assignments
Course Length: 7 weeks
Course Content

MODULE 1
SO YOU WANT TO CREATE A BUSINESS
Introduction to Creating a Business
Becoming a Professional
Self-Analysis: Are you Ready to Start a Business
Why Do You Want This?
What Type Of Business Structure Do You Want?
Establishing Your Business
Building a Library

MODULE 2
WRITING YOUR BUSINESS PLAN
What is a business plan and why do you need one?
Steps of Writing a Business Plan
Marketing Plan
Financial Planning/Funding
Business Description & Vision
Mission Statement
Company Vision
Goals and Objectives
Description of Services
Organization and Management
Marketing and Sales Strategy
Financial Management

MODULE 3
CONTRACTS AND FEE STRUCTURE
Things to consider when creating a contract
Types of Contracts
Letters of Agreement
Research Contracts

MODULE 4
MARKETING
What should you market?
Marketing Avenues
Online
Offline
Trade Shows & Conferences
Collaboration
Writing a Marketing Plan
Marketing Strategies to Keep in Mind

MODULE 5
TIME MANAGEMENT
Identifying Time Wasters
Personal vs. Professional Time Management
Tips for Time Management

MODULE 6
TOOLS FOR PRODUCTIVITY
Being Productive in Daily Life
Old School Tools for Productivity
New School Tools for Productivity
Tools to Organize Client Information
Things to Consider

APPENDIX
Course image Business Skills: Business Administration
Basic Professional Development and Business Skills
Course Summary:

Note: This course requires compulsory materials to be ordered. The book is available at GenealogyStore.com

  1. Mills, Elizabeth Shown, Professional Genealogy: A manual for researchers, writers, editors, lecturers and librarians (2001; reprint, Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, Inc., 2012).

Optional Print Course Material: Business Skills: Business Administration

*Course material will only be sent to students who are registered in the course.

Once you have set up your small business, it is not enough to simply sit back, wait for clients to come to you, and provide your services. In order to keep the business viable and successful, you must focus ongoing attention on its overall operation and growth. 

 This course will identify the various elements involved in keeping a business strong, and will educate you on how to accomplish these. Examples will be drawn from the businesses of providing genealogy and personal history services. Assignments and exercises will offer practical application of the material and opportunities to explore different methods and tools available to the small business owner. 

It is recommended that the student complete the course, Business Skills: Creating a Genealogy Business first or have at least written a business plan and started a business before embarking on this course.

Course Length: 7 weeks
Contact Hours: 18
Grading Scale: 70% Tests/30% Assignments
Course Length: 7 weeks
Course Content

MODULE 1
STRATEGIC PLANNING
Introduction
Review of Business Plan
Strategic Planning Process
Review of Mission and Vision Statements
Ethics
Key Advisors/Advisory Board
Products/Services
Celebrating Achievements and Milestones
Growing Your Business
Home Office Considerations
Plans for Exiting Your Business
Legal Considerations
SWOT Analysis
Additional Resources
GLOSSARY/DEFINITION OF TERMS

MODULE 2
FINANCIAL MATTERS
Financial Management
Project Management/Timekeeping

MODULE 3
MARKETING AND SALES
Sales Management
Prospect Management
Evaluating the Sales Process
Proposals
Marketing Management

MODULE 4
CLIENT MANAGEMENT
Client Contact/Correspondence/Email
Contracts/Service Agreements/Letters of Understanding
Relationship
Feedback & Evaluations from Clients/Testimonials
Referral
Suggesting Additional Services

MODULE 5
RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
Professional Image
Professional Connections/Associations
Collaborations with Other Professionals
Subcontracting with Service Providers
Education and Training
Time Management
Space Management
Human Resources
Vendor Management
Equipment and Software
Additional Resources

MODULE 6
POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
Reasons for Policies and Procedures
Writing/Reviewing/Revising
Special Considerations of Client Resolution Policy for Complaints
Establishing a Reporting Procedure
Conclusion
Course image Business Skills: Career Development: Choosing a Niche-Part 1
Basic Professional Development and Business Skills
Course Summary:

Note: This course requires compulsory materials to be ordered. The book is available at GenealogyStore.com

  1. Mills, Elizabeth Shown, Professional Genealogy: A manual for researchers, writers, editors, lecturers and librarians (2001; reprint, Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, Inc., 2012).

Optional Print Course Materials:Business Skills: Career Development: Choosing a Niche - Part 1

*Course material will only be sent to students who are registered in the course.

Creating a genealogical business requires many steps. First, there is self-analysis to determine who you are, what you want, how to achieve balance in work and personal life, and what kind of business you wish to start. Next comes the business planning, market analysis, marketing planning and overall business structure to establish. Finally, considerations of things you need for the business from supplies, income, marketing opportunities, and a productivity tool chest will help round out your plans and get you off on the right footing. In Creating a Business, you will learn the skills you need to accomplish all these things and spend a lot of time thinking about the ins and outs of business.

Course Length: 7 weeks

Contact Hours: 18
Grading Scale: 70% Tests/30% Assignments
Course Length: 7 weeks
Course Content

MODULE 1
INTRODUCTION
Board for Certification of Genealogists Code of Ethics
Introduction to Choosing a Niche
Self-Analysis: Are you Ready to Add Income Streams?
What Do You Want and Why Do You Want It?
How to Get From Here to There
Enrich Your Current Focus
Accreditation and Certification Options

MODULE 2
WRITING AND PUBLISHING
Introduction
Self-Analysis: Do You Have the Characteristics of a Writer?
Education
Self-Study
Collaborative Study or Writing Groups
Professional Writing Organizations
Writing Options
Writing for Pay vs. Non-Pay - Pros and Cons
Publishing Options
Writing and Publishing Business Components

MODULE 3
FORENSIC GENEALOGIST
Self-Analysis: Are You Ready to Become a Forensic Genealogist
What Is Forensic Genealogy?
Education
Credentials
Going to Court
Standards of Practice
Professional Organizations
Mentors
Setting Your Fees and Writing Contracts
Marketing

MODULE 4
FAMILY ARCHIVIST
Introduction to Family Archivist
Self-Analysis: Are you Ready to Become a Family Archivist?
Who Uses Archives?
Archives as an Additional Income Stream
Education
Standards of Practice
Professional Organizations
Getting Down To Business

MODULE 5
CONFERENCE ORGANIZER OR SPECIAL EVENT PLANNER
Introduction to Event Planning
Self-Analysis: Do You Have the Skills and Characteristics of a Conference Organizer or Special Events Planner?
Who Needs this Service?
Tips for Getting Started
The Process of Planning an Event
Professional Organizations
Education
Getting Down to Business
Planning a One Day Conference - Example

MODULE 6
HOUSE HISTORIAN
Introduction to House Histories
Who Needs This Service?
House History Research Process
Writing the History of a Home
Historic Registration Programs
Preserving the Home for the Future
Education
Setting Your Fees
House Historian Business Plan and Marketing Plan
Conclusion
Additional Resources
Course image Business Skills: Career Development: Choosing a Niche-Part 2
Basic Professional Development and Business Skills
Course Summary:

Note: This course requires compulsory materials to be ordered. The book is available at GenealogyStore.com

  1. Mills, Elizabeth Shown, Professional Genealogy: A manual for researchers, writers, editors, lecturers and librarians (2001; reprint, Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, Inc., 2012).

Optional Print Course Material: Business Skills: Career Development: Choosing a Niche - Part 2

*Course material will only be sent to students who are registered in the course.

Finding your niches in the business of genealogy is something discovered over time. As new opportunities in the business present themselves, you will be faced with choices about which direction to take. Learn about additional niche opportunities in this course including Historian, Organizer, Social Media Marketer, Coach, and explore additional niches on your own based on what you have learned throughout the course. Use this knowledge to continue to grow your genealogy business. 

Course Length: 7 weeks

Contact Hours: 18
Grading Scale: 70% Tests/30% Assignments
Course Length: 7 weeks
Course Content

MODULE 1
INTRODUCTION
Board for Certification of Genealogists Code of Ethics and Conduct
Introduction to Choosing a Niche
Self-Analysis: Are you Ready to Add Income Streams?
HISTORIAN CAREER
What Is A Historian?
Who Needs This Service?
Historian As A Teacher
Historian As A Personal Historian
Historian As A Writer
Create Your Own Job
Professional Organizations
Marketing

MODULE 2
PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
Self-Analysis: Do you have what it takes to be a Professional Organizer?
Introduction
What is a Professional Organizer?
Who needs this service?
Services
Professional Organizations & Education
Marketing

MODULE 3
SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETER
Introduction
Self-Analysis: How Social Media Savvy Are You?
Show What You Know
Who Needs This Service?
Social Media Platforms
Create The Paperwork
Additional Resources

MODULE 4
COACHING
Introduction
Self-Analysis: Do You Have the Skills to be a Coach?
Skill Development
Who needs this service?
Coaching Online Versus In-Person
Education
Professional Organizations

MODULE 5
ADDITIONAL INCOME OPTIONS
Introduction
Option 1: Book Dealer
Option 2: Lecturer
Option 3: Photograph Expert and Photographer
Additional Resources

MODULE 6
ASSESSING ALL THE OPTIONS
Introduction
Step 1: Examine All Your Goals
Step 2: Break Down the Goals
Step 3: Break Down Further
Creating New Opportunities for Income
Course image Business Skills: Marketing Your Services and Products
Basic Professional Development and Business Skills
Course Summary:

Optional Print Course Material: Business Skills: Marketing Your Services and Products

*Course material will only be sent to students who are registered in the course.

Marketing is the way to get the word out about your business, so that potential clients or customers will find you. As with most professionals, you may prefer to spend your time and energy doing what you do best—whether that is writing books of families’ histories, making video-biographies, or capturing oral histories for a business history—but in order to find clients, you must give adequate attention to marketing. In this course, we will present the basic methods and topics in marketing, geared toward a small business owner like a personal historian or professional genealogist. 

It is recommended that you have taken the course, Business Skills: Creating a Business, or at least have written a business plan and started a business.  

Course Length: 7 weeks

Contact Hours: 12
Grading Scale: 70% Tests/30% Assignments
Course Length: 7 weeks
Course Content

MODULE 1
INTRODUCTION
Suggested Prerequisite/Companion Courses
Short Explanation of Course Value
Course Overview
Marketing Glossary
APPROACHES TO MARKETING
Websites
What is Marketing?
Various Approaches
Let’s Talk About Selling
Let’s Talk About Competition
Additional Resources

MODULE 2
COURSE NOTES & ASSIGNMENTS
TARGET PRACTICE
What Is a Target Market?
Identify Your Targets
How to Get in Front of Ideal Clients
Your Community

MODULE 3
MANAGING YOUR CLIENTS
Your “Targets” Are People
Putting Your Clients First
Create a Database
Ask for Referrals

MODULE 4
BASIC TRAINING: PREPARING FOR MARKETING
Image & Branding
Basic Materials

MODULE 5
MANY WAYS TO MARKET
Marketing Methods
Advertising

MODULE 6
MIXING IT UP
Marketing Mix: The 4 P’s
Planning
Budgeting
BIBLIOGRAPHY
Course image Business Skills: Establishing and Promoting Your Website
Basic Professional Development and Business Skills
Course Summary:

Optional Print Course Material:Business Skills: Establishing and Promoting Your Website

*Course material will only be sent to students who are registered in the course.

A website is an important part of your overall business. But planning, creating and maintaining a website can seem overwhelming. What information should your website include? What should not be part of your website? 

In this course we will start at the basics and discuss why you need a website, provide ideas for your website, and go through the steps of getting started. Using WordPress and Blogger for your website and blog will be discussed. 

Course Length: 7 weeks

Contact Hours: 18
Grading Scale: 70% Tests/30% Assignments
Course Length: 7 weeks
Course Content

MODULE 1
INTRODUCTION
Websites
Why You Need a Website
Getting Started
Suggested Reading & Resources

MODULE 2
CHOOSING & REGISTERING YOUR DOMAIN NAME
Websites
First Things First
.COM vs. All the Others
Domain Name Registrars
Hosting Services
What is Whois
SEO 101
Suggested Reading & Resources

MODULE 3
WHICH ONE DO I CHOOSE?
Websites
Introduction
WordPress.org
Wordpress.com
Blogger
Weebly
Suggested Reading & Resources

MODULE 4
PROFESSIONAL GENEALOGY WEBSITE ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS
Websites
Email Marketing Platforms
Essential Elements
Suggested Reading & Resources

MODULE 5
TYING IT ALL TOGETHER
Websites
Introduction
Defining Your Audience & Actions You Want Them to Take
So You Have Defined Your Audience. Now, What Do You Want Them to Do?
Suggested Reading & Resources

MODULE 6
MARKETING
Websites
Word of Mouth
Content Marketing
Blogging - Why Your Website Should Have a Blog
Email Marketing/Newsletters
Social Media
To Advertise or Not to Advertise
Listings with Professional Organizations
Tips
Suggested Reading & Resources
GLOSSARY
Course image Skill-Building: Breaking Down Brick Walls
Basic Professional Development and Business Skills
Course Summary:

Optional Print Course Materials: Skill-Building: Breaking Down Brick Walls

*Course material will only be sent to students who are registered in the course.

NOTE: This course is classified as Basic Level in the Professional Development Certificate Program. 

Developed for individuals who are at or working in the Intermediate to Advanced Levels in our other certificate programs, we advise you complete the Analysis and Skills Mentoring-Part 1 course or have a working knowledge of the topics taught in that course prior to completing this one. 

Brick walls are a reality in genealogy research, but fortunately there's hope. In this course, we look at a variety of strategies you can implement to help turn your research roadblocks into breakthroughs. We begin with a quick refresher of some key research concepts to help focus your research and prepare you for success. Next, we'll walk through some simple steps to get you prepared for the journey. Finally, we'll investigate four different approaches to do some brick wall busting. By the end of this course, you'll have some new ideas for researching brick walls and the inspiration to forge ahead. 

Course Length: 7 weeks

Contact Hours: 18
Grading Scale: 70% Tests/30% Assignments
Course Length: 7 weeks
Course Content

MODULE 1
GETTING STARTED: PART 1
Introduction
Research Methodology Refresher
Get Organized
Define the Research Problem
Suggested Reading and Resources

MODULE 2
GETTING STARTED: PART 2
Compile Basic Information
Create a List of Name Variations
Learn the Location
Map It
Moving Forward
Suggested Reading and Resources

MODULE 3
STRATEGY #1: REVIEW PREVIOUS RESEARCH
The Importance of Reviewing Previous Research
Create a Research Log
Review Data
Evaluate Data
Analyze Data
Report & Plan
Suggested Reading and Resources

MODULE 4
STRATEGY #2: DEVELOP A TIMELINE
What is a Timeline?
Types of Timelines
Methods for Creating a Timeline
Analyze, Report & Plan
Suggested Reading and Resources

MODULE 5
STRATEGY #3: STUDY THE FAN CLUB
What is the FAN Club?
Finding FAN Club Members
Methods for Tracking Associates
Discovering Patterns & Relationships
Analyze, Report & Plan
Suggested Reading and Resources

MODULE 6
STRATEGY #4: ENGAGE OTHERS
Ancestry.com
The Power of Collaboration
Society Meetings & Conferences
Social Networking Websites
Message Boards & Mailing Lists
Online Family Trees
Blogs
Librarians, Archivists & Other Record Keepers
Suggested Reading and Resources