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SoCo Stars: Cliff Robbins at MSBDC


Dena and I first met Cliff Robbins long before we had incorporated Groundwork! as a legal entity. We had already landed a working partnership with the New Bedford Economic Development Council, and we were looking for some advice on getting things rolling.

Cliff gave us a quick and dirty lesson on creating a pro forma cash flow on a piece of scrap paper, which we saved and used to create the financial planning and documentation that we submitted for the TDI Grant. In less than an hour (and for free!), Cliff gave us an invaluable tool. Getting a grip on your cash flow is a survival necessity for any entrepreneur, and something we review and update regularly to stay on top of our changing circumstances and timeline at Groundwork!

My initial impressions of Cliff: he is a no-nonsense, straight-forward kind of guy, and he’s not afraid to point out the holes in your business plan. In other words, he is a great guy to talk to if you are starting out and need advice. Here, Cliff shares some insight into his work as an advisor at the Massachusetts Small Business Development Center.

What is your profession?

I am the senior business advisor for the MSBDC in SEMASS.

Describe a typical work day for you.

I counsel small business people who either want to start a business or want to increase their sales and profits.

What’s the biggest challenge you face at your job?

All of the bureaucratic paperwork and reporting that goes with government supported organizations.

Do you have a morning routine?

First, I wake up by getting a cup of coffee! Then I check my email and my daily schedule.

What are your favorite productivity tips or hacks?


What do you listen to during the day?

My inner voice…

What’s in your digital toolbox?

My iPhone.

Share one important lesson you’ve learned in your career.

Get to work and quit griping.

What is the most surprising or unusual aspect of your life?

That I still enjoy working.

What inspires you?


To schedule a free counseling session with Cliff at the MSBDC, call 508-274-0670, x10, and ask Alison to schedule it.

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