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Jacqui Bybee & Brenda Cavenaugh. 2  Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program Priority to operate food service facilities on federal properties “For.

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Presentation on theme: "Jacqui Bybee & Brenda Cavenaugh. 2  Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program Priority to operate food service facilities on federal properties “For."— Presentation transcript:

1 Jacqui Bybee & Brenda Cavenaugh

2 2  Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program Priority to operate food service facilities on federal properties “For the purposes of providing blind persons with remunerative employment, enlarging the economic opportunities of the blind, and stimulating the blind to greater efforts in striving to make themselves self-supporting”

3 3  Significant changes since its enactment in 1936  Mini R-S Act  Private sector  Types of facilities  Sub-contracting  Franchising  Average earnings in $56,168

4 4  Steady decline in the number of blind entrepreneurs and facilities 1994 – 3,524 blind entrepreneurs and 3,419 facilities 2001 – 2,711 blind entrepreneurs and 3,194 and facilities 2010 – 2,319 blind entrepreneurs and 2,514 and facilities

5 5  Growing opportunities outside R-S  Skills needed  Carryover perceptions  Disparities within states in number of blind entrepreneurs and available facilities Inability to cross state lines

6  Increase the number of blind entrepreneurs  Increase the number of facilities in all sectors  Market the program  Build national brand recognition  Enable alignment of resources and talent

7 7  Develop resources and materials based on data collected from BEP professionals and blind entrepreneurs in order to enhance and grow the program Marketing materials Resource guides Publications Training materials Reference materials

8 8  75 closed and open-ended responses  44 respondents – state BEP directors or their designees  Broad scope covering recruitment, training, accommodations, standards, program requirements, etc.  Used for several components of project

9 9  Goal: Identify training needs for new BEP staff and develop updated training in response  50+ training area needs assessed  Closed and open-ended response questions  44 state directors or their designees participated

10 10  Moore, E.J. (1999). Making the Randolph-Sheppard Program More Competitive: Results of a National Training Needs Assessment. RE:view. 31(2), Surveyed 97 BEP business counselors about the most important training topics for BEP staff Basic marketing and sales promotion Blind entrepreneur training and readiness for employment Human relation skills Surveyed 99 BEP blind entrepreneurs about most important skills for BEP staff Business management skills Knowledge of food service Knowledge of customer service

11 11 Mean Importance Scores of Training Needs Determined by BEP Staff nM Marketing and customer service Communication skills Negotiation skills Accounting and Taxation Supervisory skills Training skills Knowledge of using AT in business settings Healthy food options Food service New vending Maintenance/repair skills for maintaining equipment Security Partnering/franchising opportunities Knowledge of R-S Act Knowledge of low vision technologies Rehabilitation and blindness The VR process444.64

12 12  Each state develops its own training curriculum and content  One national curriculum Minton, E.A., Spann, V.J. & Weston, E.A. (1985). Randolph- Sheppard Management System. West Virginia Research and Training Center, West Virginia Division of Vocational Rehabilitation.  Few states use this training curriculum Outdated

13 13  National Online Training Curriculum for BEP Staff  14 modules Modules based on research results Self-paced Free Supplement other training activities

14 14  Orientation to Blindness  Vocational Rehabilitation and How it Intersects with Randolph-Sheppard  The Randolph-Sheppard Act and Its Implementing Regulations  Active Participation – What It Is and What It Isn’t  Assistive Technology and Its Potential for Blind Entrepreneurs  The Role of the Business Consultant  Business Principles of Managing a Food Service Facility

15 15  Human Resource Management for the Randolph- Sheppard Blind Entrepreneur  Marketing and Customer Service Relations  Marketing the Randolph-Sheppard Program to Outside Parties  Teaming and Branding – A Way to Increase Income for Blind Entrepreneurs  Food Safety and Sanitation  Changing Trends: Meeting the Challenges of Providing Healthy Food Options  Maximizing Opportunities for Blind Entrepreneurs with a Hearing Loss

16 16  Bybee, J. & Cavenaugh, B.S. (2014). Randolph- Sheppard National Online Training Curriculum for Program Staff: Findings from a National Survey of Randolph-Sheppard Directors. Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness. 108(2),  Second publication on training needs of blind entrepreneurs

17 17  Standardizes knowledge across the entire program  Ensures comprehensiveness of training  Allows for easier transition from one state program to another  May increase knowledge in key areas to help enhance the program

18 18  Individuals with dual sensory loss are at greater risk for low employment outcomes  How can an individual with a dual sensory loss run a food service facility?

19 19  Jordan, B. (2008). The Success of Blind Vendors who also have Hearing Loss. Helen Keller National Center. Shawnee Mission, KS. Surveyed 29 blind entrepreneurs with hearing loss Blind entrepreneurs with hearing loss excel in the Randolph-Sheppard Program

20 20  Goal: Gain knowledge of working with blind entrepreneurs with hearing loss through the perspective of BEP professionals  Contacted 29 state BEP directors that have experience in working with blind entrepreneurs with hearing loss Ask permission to contact other experienced BEP staff and blind entrepreneurs with hearing loss  Conducted in-depth interviews

21 21  43 participants from 14 states 16 (37%) BEP directors 5 (13%) Training staff 11 (25%) BEP counselors 11 (25%) Entrepreneurs with hearing loss

22 22  BEP staff confirmed that blind entrepreneurs with hearing loss excel in the R-S program No staff member felt that hearing loss was a barrier to success Accommodations and communication strategies available to meet any situation

23 23  “BEP staff members felt that training and working with blind entrepreneurs with hearing loss did present some unique situations for accommodation. However, an effective solution was always found, and once found, it was no different than working with any other entrepreneur in the BEP.”  “Entrepreneurs with a vision and hearing loss said that the most challenging aspect or their job is conducting daily business operations including the balancing act of maintaining proper inventory levels, keeping employees happy, and delivering excellent customer service – the same issues that any entrepreneur encounters when running a business.”

24 24  Working with Blind Entrepreneurs who have a Hearing Loss in the Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program Resource Guide Introduction to hearing loss and common accommodations used Working with blind entrepreneurs with a hearing loss in training, on-the-job, and at state/national meetings Advice and experiences of BEP staff and blind entrepreneurs Suggestions for program improvement Resource list for accommodating  Available for free download at: Under “Our Products” tab

25 25  Average age is around 50 years old  Why is this? Younger individuals have increased opportunities outside the R-S program Misinformed about the program  Any other ideas?

26 26  “Aging-out” of blind entrepreneurs  17 states identified as having recruitment practices for transition-age Job shadowing opportunities Summer programs Relationships with local schools

27 27  Conduct in-depth interviews Ask about recruitment practices Summer programs Activity at consumer groups Other opportunities for transition-age individuals  Resource guide will be developed on “best practices” for recruiting transition-age individuals into the BEP  Marketing brochure will be developed targeted for transition-age individuals

28 28  Each state has different entry-level requirements High school diploma or GED 18 years of age Minimum mathematical and English proficiencies  No standardized list of preferred qualities

29 29  Compile minimum entry requirements for each state BEP Useful tool to have all states’ requirements combined in one document  Identify and compile a list of preferred qualifications for BEP entrepreneurs entering the program Useful tool to have a “master” list of recognized skills necessary to be successful in the BEP

30 30  Compile baseline facility performance data Net profit Gross sales Operating costs Computed based on figures from several states across the country Listed by type of facility and area profile Useful as a supplemental resource for assessing the viability of a current or future BEP facilities

31 31

32 32  Available for free download at our website: “Our Products” tab  Marketing tool  Template for state-specific design

33 33  Questions?  Comments?  Suggestions?  Points of interest?

34 34  Jacqui Bybee  Project website project.php?id=4 project.php?id=4


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