Focus Areas

Operations & Financial Fundamentals

Is my business prepared to take on larger projects?

Dive into business fundamentals with a focus on financial management tools. Determine what makes contracting businesses ready to take on larger projects with more risks and returns.

Bid & Secure Larger Projects

How do I win and manage larger projects?

Hone your bidding strategies with best practices to win contracts. Discover approaches to collaborations and conflicts that inevitably arise at the worksite. Then, explore methods to keep larger projects on time and on budget.

Turn Learnings into Earnings

Where do I take my strengthened business now?

Synthesize everything learned into a high-impact elevator pitch to inspire future customers. As part of this process, participants will evaluate their current marketing approach and create a plan of action to be more visible and successful in the construction sector.

Emerging Contractor Accelerator Application

Ready to take on larger projects?

Apply Now

Program Basics

Benefits

  • 6 months of intensive sessions
  • 3 months of post-graduation support
  • One learning session and one review session per month
  • The cohort meets for two hours every second and fourth Tuesday of the month
  • Cohort-driven with seven participants in a peer group
  • Access to mentoring to activate learning and project opportunities
  • Participants get 40 hours of training and coaching
  • Up to $2,000 of support in coaching and consulting services during sessions
  • Up to $2,000 of support in coaching and consulting services after graduation

Timeline

  • Application opens on January 1, 2024
  • Info Session in January 17th. 2024, sign up below
  • Applications close on February 2, 2024
  • Cohort participants announced on March 1, 2024
  • Cohort Orientation on March 20, 2024
  • The 6 Month session schedule is outlined below
  • The session will end with a graduation event

Eligibility

  • Small businesses based in Southwestern Pennsylvania
  • Black-owned small businesses
  • Small businesses started before 2022
  • Annual gross revenue under $250,000
  • Average construction contract below $100,000
  • Willing to fully commit to pre and post-session homework
  • Willing to attend virtual and/or in-person sessions
  • Willing to complete program assessments to gauge impact

Want to Learn More?

Join us for an info session on January 17th.

Sign Up

Program Leader

As a Senior Programs Manager for Bridgeway, Roderick Ramsey leads the developer and contractor training for its Building Inclusive Development (BID) program. He works closely with clients to connect them with guidance, peers, markets, capacity, space, and capital to aid their entrepreneurial journey. Roderick is no stranger to helping to build growing businesses. Before his current position, he served as a business coach and owned and founded Ocular Arcade, a digital design and marketing company. He has served in management roles across various industries, including web development, printmaking, and academia. Roderick earned a Bachelor of Arts from Saint Vincent College in 2012 and a master’s in business management from Point Park University in 2016. He is also a proud father, business owner, and visual artist.

Our Experts

La’Taunja Martin Cooper

Founder | Martila Enterprise

Martila Enterprise is a professional construction management and real estate solutions company providing clients with the best services in project initiation through project closeout. They aim to become the forefront company that offers an unparalleled experience by building trust and valued relationships with clients.

Francine B. Cameron

President & CEO | CPSG, LLC

Cameron Professional Services Group (CPSG) provides owners with project management, credit analysis, plan & cost review, operational review, fiscal management, and vendor management to organizations undertaking community development projects. CPSG also offers accounting services to for-profit and non-profit organizations.

Christopher Kujawa

President | PDDM Solutions, LLC

PDDM Solutions provides construction and project management services, engineering/environmental design, permitting services, and workforce professional staffing and recruiting. The PDDM Solutions Team has grown and continues to grow because of its hard work and dedication to providing the best services to its clients.

Sammie and Dennis Guy

CCO & CEO | First Sip Studios

At First Sip Studios, our mission is to empower businesses, entrepreneurs, and individuals to unlock their creative potential and thrive in the digital era. Through innovative storytelling, cutting-edge technology, and transformative programs, we strive to amplify voices, inspire connections, and drive positive change in the world.

Accelerator Location

Gather, Learn, Share

All sessions will be at The Wilkinsburg Train Station in the Bridgeway Capital space at 901 Hay Street, Pittsburgh PA, 15221.

Get Directions

Session Schedule

Orientation

Expert: Roderick Ramsey 

Get set up for success. Learn what to expect from the sessions and meet your cohort. The orientation is also an opportunity to ask questions and submit enrollment paperwork.

Date:
Orientation Session 3/20/24

Time: 5:30 pm to 7:30 p.m.

 

Is my emerging business ready for larger projects?

Expert: Francine Cameron

These first sessions will dive right into the business fundamentals of cohort participants with a focus on financial management tools.  Determine what makes them ready to take on larger projects with more risks and returns. Taskwork will include balance sheets, income statements, cash flow statements, and providing a brief vision for the next steps with legal, marketing, and insurance tools.

Dates:
Learning Session 4/3/24
Review Session 4/17/24

Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Are my operations set up for larger projects?

Expert: Francine Cameron

These sessions will challenge cohort participants to get real about their back-office practices and partners. Proper systems need to be in place to meet the needs of a wide variety of project stakeholders, ranging from clients to subs. Taskwork will include action plans to fill gaps in operations, which can be directly addressed through the cohorts’ supportive services.

Dates:
Learning Session 5/1/24
Review Session 5/15/24

Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

How do I effectively pursue larger projects?

Expert: Christopher Kujawa

When emerging contracting and construction businesses identify new projects they want to pursue, knowing the best practices to win the contract may not always be clear. Taskwork will include pursuing a sample project. Participants will hone their estimating, bidding, and proposing processes needed to compete for opportunities professionally and with a higher likelihood of success.

Dates:
Learning Session 5/29/24
Review Session 6/12/24

Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

How do I profitably manage larger projects?

Expert: La’Taunja Martin Cooper

Larger projects can be exciting at first, with the prospect of increased revenues. But they also bring new and complex challenges. How are you communicating with the clients and general contractor? How will you capitalize for mobilization? How are you managing your subcontractors? These sessions will explore the best practices and lessons learned to ensure your largest project is not your last one.

Dates:
Learning Session 6/26/24
Review Session 7/10/24

Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

How do I profitably manage larger projects? Continued

Expert: La’Taunja Martin Cooper

In part 2 of this vital section, we will explore methods to keep larger projects on time and on budget. Cohort participants will share approaches to collaborations and conflicts that inevitably arise at the worksite. Taskwork will include mitigation techniques to handle project issues and ensure your business succeeds while meeting client needs.

Dates:
Learning Session 7/24/24
Review Session 8/7/24

Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Where do I take my strengthened business?

Expert: Sammie and Dennis Guy

This session focuses on turning your learnings into earnings. Participants will synthesize everything they learned over the preceding months into a high-impact elevator pitch to inspire future customers. As part of this process, participants will evaluate their current marketing approach and create a plan of action to be more visible and successful in the construction sector.

Dates:
Learning Session 8/21/24
Review Session 9/4/24

Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Graduation

Celebration in September 2024

Participants will share and celebrate their vision for success.

Post Graduation Support:

September – November, 2024

Graduates are eligible to access up to $2,000 in coaching and consulting services for three months after graduation to help continue their momentum. The session experts will provide one-on-one coaching to help participants exercise new capabilities and confidence.

Charles Jones Contracting

“10 years ago I was actually learning how to read,” says Charles Jones. “And since I couldn’t read I was always good with my hands. I knew one day I wanted to start my own business. I had 21 years in the labor union and was taking on contracts. Then I decided to take a chance to launch Charles Jones Contracting and it grew from there.”  Charles Jones was able to expand his emerging business, Charles Jones Contracting, by increasing the average size of his contracts with the Building Inclusive Development (BID) Program.

WATCH THEIR STORY

Emerging Contractor Accelerator Application

Ready to take on larger projects?

Apply Now