Drawing from the experience of entrepreneurs and startup thought-leaders around the globe, CO.STARTERS walks small-business owners through the lean business modeling methods used by high-growth startups, in a simple and intuitive way.

Rather than treating a startup like a large corporation and writing a detailed business plan, CO.STARTERS participants are encouraged to build and test small models first. In the process, they receive real-time customer feedback, update their models to meet customer needs and avoid creating businesses based on incorrect assumptions.


  • Uses simple, easy to understand language and addresses the full spectrum of adult learning styles.
  • Provides practical steps to launch, rather than theoretical concepts.
  • Brings people together to learn from one another, creating a strong a network of support for startups.
  • Helps your region create a vibrant startup community and celebrate entrepreneurship.
  • Offers a process for identifying, testing, and adapting business assumptions to create a viable startup.
  • Assumes customers should be the primary concern in every aspect of creating a business.


During CO.STARTERS, you’ll develop and fine-tune your idea, critically examining every part of it and tweaking your next steps through real-time feedback from people in the community. Over the nine weeks, we’ll cover the following topics.

  • Week 1: Knowing Yourself (Assumptions, Working Styles, Team Building, Obstacles)
  • Week 2: Knowing Your Customer (Problem, Solution, Benefit, Competition, Advantage, Customer)
  • Week 3: Getting the Relationship Right (Marketing & Message; Getting, Keeping & Growing Customers)
  • Week 4: Building the Model to Scale (Starting Small, Distribution, Revenue, Typical Sale, Price)
  • Week 5: Strengthening Your Structure (Business Structures, Licenses, IP, Hiring)
  • Week 6: Discovering the Bottom Line (Startup & Ongoing Needs, Fixed & Variable Costs, Break-Event Point)
  • Week 7: Accounting for Growth (Break-Even Point, Sales Projections, Cash Flow, Accounting)
  • Week 8: Planning for the Future (Raising Capital, Growth Plans, Goal Setting, Pitch Prep)
  • Week 9: Pitch Night/Sharing Your Story


CO.STARTERS lasts nine weeks, meeting one evening a week for three hours.


CO.STARTERS program is 3 hours, 1 night per week for 9 weeks.


The class will be held at SMTEC, 414 Wilson Avenue, Suite 121, Tullahoma, TN 37388.


The course fee ranges from $150 to $495 on a sliding scale and includes materials. For those unable to cover the full cost of tuition, we will accept in-kind services and bartering to cover expenses. Chamber and Middle Tennessee Business Network members as well as TennesSeed Camp attendees the fee is $250. $50 deposit is required to reserve your seat. This deposit applies toward the course fee and is non-refundable.

CO.STARTERS Program Application

CO.STARTERS reserve your seat — $50


Scholarship Award – $495.00 Per attendee (Multiple Scholarships welcome!)

  • STARTERS Scholarship provided in your Company’s name
  • Your company included in Media blasts identifying you as a scholarship donor
  • Your Company posted on our web site as scholarship donor