The Roanoke Business Lounge is a facility that provides office space and conference rooms to individuals who are in need of such spaces but do not have access to one. The idea behind the Business Lounge is to promote co-working among individuals from different work fields.
Samantha Steidle, the founder of the Roanoke Business Lounge has benefited immensely from the assistance provided by the Roanoke SBDC. She had wanted to start this business a long time ago, and with the help of the SBDC led by Mr. Wayne Flippen and Mr. Tom Tanner, she has achieved her goal. According to Mrs. Steidle, one of the main problems she experienced early on was what she expressed as “work in silos.” This happens when you do not know where the other start ups are and therefore you feel alone. Also, the “lack of information and knowledge of how to create networks in a way that benefits everyone” was a challenge for her. With the assistance of the SBDC however, she learned how to create partnerships within the Roanoke community.
She continues to have a good relationship with the SBDC and stated “I have Wayne and Tom on speed dial,” as they are always available to give her advise whenever she experiences a business dilemma. As a result of the advice she continues to receive from the SBDC, her business continues to grow and she is currently in the process of expanding her business into a much bigger facility called the CoLab which will provide space for co-working, lectures, conferences, presentations, among others. The SBDC has played a big role in what she has been able to achieve and according to her, “my business has grown five times since I started working with the SBDC because they give good advice.”