MARCH / APRIL 2017 | $4.95 March/April 2017 BUSINESS INCUBATORS | WOMEN WHO MEAN BUSINESS | LONG-DISTANCE COMMUNICATION
11 PEOPLE AND BUSINESSES DRIVING 417-LAND’S TECH COMMUNITY
UP FOR REVIEW
WHY WILLARD PUBLIC SCHOOLS CHANGED THEIR PERFORMANCE REVIEWS—AND HOW YOU CAN, TOO
Four Springfield leaders at the top of their game
Crista Hogan, Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association
WOMEN WHO MEAN BUSINESS Go beyond the page. Learn from four of the Women Who Mean Business on how they made it to the top. Network in 417 fashion at this high-energy, business education event.
International Association of Fairs and Expositions
Elle's Patisserie & Lavare Spa
Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association
PURCHASE TICKETS AT BIZ417.COM #BIZBSCHOOL Thursday, April 13 | 7:30–9 a.m. $15 tickets, $20 after April 1 Andy B’s Entertainment Center 1127 E. Battlefield Rd.
STRUGGLING TO GAIN TRACTION ONLINE?
We all understand the importance of being on page one of Google search results, yet many of us struggle to get there. 417 Marketing utilizes a proven method to help clients dominate search results, maximize trafﬁc and generate qualiﬁed leads. When looking for an SEO, I wanted to find a full-service firm that I could rely on for all aspects of SEO, including keyword strategy, technical website optimization, visibility, conversion tracking, and more. I needed a partner that I could trust to do the right thing and make wise recommendations for the benefit of my business.
417 MARKETING HAS EXCEEDED MY EXPECTATIONS. I FOUND MY PARTNER. JAY SANDIDGE
INTERNATIONAL MARKETING DIRECTOR, POSITRONIC
417 MARKETING HAS DONE SUCH AN AMAZING JOB WITH OUR SEO CAMPAIGN! They are pleasant, efficient, and fast! We love working with them!
417 MARKETING IS BY FAR THE BEST SEO COMPANY I HAVE WORKED WITH.
I tried three other companies over the past five years, and 417 Marketing blows them all away. I wish I would have found them sooner.
417 Marketing has done everything they said they would do and more when it comes to increasing visibility, traffic, and conversions with our website, hitandruncandlesticks.com.
I CAN'T EVEN BEGIN TO EXPLAIN HOW EASY THEY ARE TO WORK WITH. THEY DO EXACTLY WHAT THEY SAY THEY WILL DO. RICK SADDLER
PRESIDENT, HIT & RUN CANDLESTICKS
OWNER, SOUND RELIEF HEARING CENTER
417 Marketing has been providing world-class SEO services since 2010 and knows what it takes to get you results.
CALL OR VISIT US ONLINE TO SCHEDULE A FREE CONSULTATION.
WOMEN WHO MEAN BUSINESS For the second year in a row, we’re honoring women who stand out in 417-land’s business community. They don’t just work hard—they hustle. Meet the four women who made this year’s cut. BY SAVANNAH WASZCZUK
EXCELLENCE IN TECHNOLOGY AWARDS If you think 417-land isn’t brimming with technology, think again. Meet the 11 people and companies changing how southwest Missouri does business. BY ADRIENNE DONICA
PHOTO BY CHUCK TRAVERS; COVER PHOTO BY CHUCK TRAVERS
With nearly 30 years of experience, Robin Robeson is executive vice president and chief operating officer at Guaranty Bank.
PHOTO BY CHUCK TRAVERS; COVER PHOTO BY CHUCK TRAVERS
SPARKS OF INSPIRATION
Leading the way to success
A skimmer’s guide to what’s inside
16 FOUR TO FOLLOW
18 UP CLOSE
20 MEET THE MAKER
17 THE REPORT
16 Fuel Tube 18 Kena Roth Business Solutions
Mark Steiner’s industry news sources Make your office more inclusive now The incubators fueling 417-land startups Springfield’s unofficial job connector The simple key to motivating employees
Upgrade your desk with these four items
50 DO IT NOW
51 WHAT IF?
60 THE BIG QUESTION
61 VANTAGE POINT
52 ADVICE & WHISKEY
54 GIVING BACK
62 NEXT GEN
Make consulting work for you Stay connected between offices Debbie Shantz Hart on doing your part How KPM branded their philanthropy
Crafting knives and customer loyalty
50 CULTURE CLUB
Wow potential investors
Reader reactions and celebrations
Bob Hammerschmidt’s morning routine
TOOLS TO HELP YOU DOMINATE
Salon Service Group employees pitch in
Improve your SEO Departika’s unexpected office decor Remake your performance reviews Local roots, national reach
Create manageable to-do lists PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK, COURTESY SHUTTERSTOCK
10 PUBLISHER’S NOTE
Sharing bills and genes at Kyle Insurance
EVERYWHERE YOU NEED TO BE
Where to go and what to do
Relive moments from the best events
PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK, COURTESY SHUTTERSTOCK
ADVISORY BOARD Rachel Anderson
Business would be nothing without technology. That’s why Biz 417 is recognizing the best of the best in our first Excellence in Technology Awards. Find out the winners on p. 34, then visit biz417.com to learn how these 11 businesses and people are keeping 417-land’s technology sector on its toes.
Owner | Spirit Factory and Spirit Box Business Development Manager | Stingray Overseas Manufacturing Brooke Bigham
Managing Partner EOS LLC
STRENGTHENING THE WORKFORCE
In December, the City of Springfield Workforce Development Department opened a new Missouri Job Center on the north side of Springfield. We sat down with Director of Workforce Development Mary Ann Rojas to get the skinny about the new center. Read about that and more on p. 17, then head to biz417.com to see how Rojas has changed her office’s culture and to learn how to promote diversity within your company.
MAKING THE CUT
Craftsman Patrick Roehrman started MT Knives in 2010 after leaving his job as an electrical lineman. On p. 20, he shares how he’s created a loyal customer base, and on biz417.com, he walks us through the actual process of making one of his utility knives.
OPTIMIZE YOUR WEBSITE
If Google can’t find your business, you’re in trouble. Two digital experts share insights on how to increase your search engine optimization on p. 55. Get even more tips from them at biz417.com.
B-SCHOOL BREAKFAST SERIES: WOMEN WHO MEAN BUSINESS This year’s Women Who Mean Business lead the pack. Nab their strategies for staying on top on April 13 at Andy B’s Entertainment Center. Hear how they capitalized on opportunities, took risks and advanced their careers. Class is in session at 7:30 a.m. Get your ticket at biz417.com/bschool.
FASHIONATION Take a night off with 417 Magazine at the 11th annual Fashionation. Eight of 417-land’s best dressed people are joined on the runway by many others to showcase the latest trends of the season. The fun kicks off on April 8 at 7 p.m. at the Springfield Expo Center. Buy tickets at 417mag.com/fashionation.
Dean and David D. Glass Distinguished Leadership Chair Missouri State University College of Business Teresa Coyan
Legislative and Public Affairs Manager CoxHealth Trevor Crist
CEO Nixon & Lindstrom Insurance Diana Day
Chief Business Officer People Centric Consulting Group Lyle Foster
Owner Big Momma’s Coffee & Espresso Bar Jeff Johnson
Senior Vice President–Commercial Lending Simmons Bank Samuel Knox
Managing Editor Unite.Publication
Founder, President, CEO SRC Holdings Corporation Kurt Theobald
CEO Classy Llama
Gary Whitaker email@example.com PRESIDENT/ ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER
Logan Aguirre firstname.lastname@example.org
SEE THIS MARK? LOOK ONLINE FOR EXTENDED CONTENT AT BIZ417.COM
VICE PRESIDENT OF OPERATIONS
Megan Johnson email@example.com VICE PRESIDENT OF SALES
Ammie Scott firstname.lastname@example.org
VICE PRESIDENT OF FINANCE
Joan Whitaker email@example.com
SUBSCRIPTION RATES: 6 issues, $15. Please call Bernadette Pry at 417-883-7417. Allow 4–6 weeks for processing orders, payment and changes of address. SINGLE ISSUE: $4.95, back issues, $6 plus $6 shipping and handling, if available. No back issue orders or subscriptions outside the United States. ADDRESS CHANGES: Include both new address and mailing label with old address. Biz 417 (ISSN 23763604) is published bimonthly by Whitaker Publishing, LLC, 2111 S. Eastgate Ave., Springfield, MO 65809–2146. © Whitaker Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction or use in any manner, in whole or in part, without written permission of the publisher is strictly prohibited. Postage paid in Springfield, Missouri and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Biz 417, 2111 S. Eastgate Ave., Springfield, MO 65809–2146. The magazine accepts no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, artwork or cartoons. Printed in the United States of America.
PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK, COURTESY MT KNIVES
Entrepreneurial Specialist | The eFactory Co-founder | Alumni Spaces
March/April · Volume 2, Issue 3 · 2017
Adrienne Donica EDITORIAL DIRECTOR
Katie Pollock Estes SENIOR EDITOR
Savannah Waszczuk ANCILLARIES EDITOR
Stephanie Towne Benoit EDITORIAL INTERNS
Asia Key, Casey Struble DIGITAL DIRECTOR
Heather Kane DESIGNED BY
Jim Nissen | SWITCH Studio SENIOR PHOTOGRAPHER & DESIGNER
EDITORIAL ART COORDINATOR
DESIGN & STYLE INTERN
Ettie Berneking, Ren Bishop, Mike Cullinan, Julie Sedenko Davis, Debbie Franke, Juliana Goodwin, Sony Hocklander, Jeff Houghton, Jeremy Mason McGraw, Sydni Moore, Taylor Nguyen, Kevin O’Riley, Chuck Travers, Brad Zweerink
SALES & MARKETING DIRECTOR OF MARKETING AND EVENTS
Katherine Newman ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE
Kinsey Batson Rogers ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE
Eden Garrett, Jonathan Kirby, Kaycee Vandelicht
SUBSCRIBER CARE & BACK ISSUES
Brittni Bynum Callie Henry
Please call Trevor Collins at 417-883-7417.
Please call Ammie Scott at 417-883-7417. PERMISSIONS & REPRINTS
Please call Brittni Bynum at 417-883-7417.
Maggie Sholes Alex Solomon
Legal counsel for Whitaker Publishing provided by
Forging the Way
PHOTO BY KEVIN O’RILEY
GARY’S FAVORITE LESSONS
There are two valuable lessons that come from the same experience. First lesson: Go first. Say hello to your seatmate on your next flight. You might find out you are sitting next to a movie star like Mark Ruffalo, as MT Knives owner Patrick Roehrman (read about his business on p. 20) did on a business flight to North Dakota. Second lesson: Stay humble. Even if you are an actor, not everyone expects to be sitting next to a movie star on a flight to North Dakota.
“We forget: In life, it doesn’t matter what happens to you or where you came from. It matters what you do with what happens and what you’ve been given.” That’s the guiding philosophy of author Ryan Holiday’s cult classic The Obstacle Is the Way. Holiday shows us how some of the most successful people in history—like John D. Rockefeller, Amelia Earhart, Ulysses S. Grant and Steve Jobs—have applied stoicism to overcome difficult or even impossible situations. The best-selling book’s many fans include the New England Patriots, who overcame a late-game 25-point deficit to claim their latest Super Bowl championship. The book draws its inspiration from stoicism, the ancient Greek philosophy of enduring pain or adversity with perseverance and resilience. “What stands in the way becomes the way.” A similar philosophy is shared by the Women Who Mean Business featured in this edition’s cover story (see p. 24). Rather than being frustrated, demoralized or stuck in a rut dug by others, they’ve turned their gender—what might once have been deemed a disadvantage—into an advantage. The onetime obstacle becomes the way. I see it daily. As I transition to retirement (or at least longer sabbaticals) every person we have promoted to our executive team is female. So is our Creative Director, and editors of all our magazines. Sales? Out of a team of eight, only one is male. So, is a staff of mostly female creative-types by design? If it is, we’re not alone. True or not, it’s almost universally acknowledged that women trump men in social skills such as teamwork and collaboration. Producing more than 30 individual magazines a year plus a constant stream of e-newsletters and websites would not be nearly as seamless without such skills. Internally, we call it interdependent autonomy: a work style that encourages independent thinking and acting but with an eye toward making sure it doesn’t prevent someone else from meeting their deadline or producing their best work. It requires leadership skills that seem to come naturally to people who often have to approach life as a balancing act. It’s collaboration mixed with the courage to shoot straight and demand more when excellence is absent. We live in uncertain times. But there isn’t much chance for positive change or growth when external forces are allowed to dictate how we feel. When you are sailing in a storm, you don’t let the wave hit your boat on the side. You sail into the wave, then ride it. The obstacle is the way. The four women featured in our cover story and the 35 in our company have learned to not let external forces define their lives. They’ve realized they have the power to master their talents and to live lives to be admired. Although they might not be able to control the events that happen in the world, they get to decide how to respond to them. And they mean business.
Gary Whitaker Publisher, Biz 417
Fueling the Target Market
To reach potential and existing customers in a whole new way, American National Property and Casualty Company launched an online, customizable car show called Fuel Tube. The new product is not without bugs, but by offering an innovative product, the brand is engaging with customers like never before.
Women Who Mean Business
Marla Calico, Elle Feldman, Crista Hogan and Robin Robeson built organizations, started businesses, navigated hardships and took risks to make it to the top. We sat down with four of 417-land’s fiercest businesswomen to learn how they turned their ambition into accomplishments. PAGE 24
D is for Diversity
Co-founders of The Geek Foundation Krista Peryer and Maranda Reynolds share strategies like paying attention to language to increase diversity at your company. PAGE 16
Excellence in Technology Awards
If there’s one thing you can learn from the 11 people and businesses we’re celebrating in our first ever Excellence in Technology Awards, it’s to never stop learning. These experts are changing how business is done in southwest Missouri and beyond. PAGE 34
Down to Business
Having an office of one’s own is hardly practical for most startups. Luckily, the four business incubators in 417-land offer new businesses not only roofs over their heads, but also resources and a community of entrepreneurs that offers inspiration and advice when they need it.
Finding the Egg
From Corporate Employee to Contractor
Now almost four years into her position as director of Workforce Development for the City of Springfield, Mary Ann Rojas discusses how the department has helped potential employees and employers grow the region’s workforce. Although promising progress has been made, much more lies ahead. PAGE 17
Of course employees at Salon Service Group have different jobs, but everyone has one responsibility in common: going to great lengths to help customers. Owner Gino Barbo calls this finding the egg.
Getting fired can seem like the worst possible scenario, but Clyde Howell knows from experience that it doesn’t have to be. Becoming an independent contractor offers flexibility and the chance to interview a potential long-term employer as long as you’re willing to serve the company. PAGE 51
Making It Work from Home
Kena Roth was anxious to rejoin the workforce after having two kids, so she started Kena Roth Business Solutions, a virtual assistant practice that lets her work from home. As a new business owner, she learned to trust herself. Sure enough, her business has grown to a team of six, and her income doubled in 2016.
PHOTOS BY BRANDON ALMS, COURTESY KPM, ERIC CHAMBERS
PHOTO BY KEVIN O’RILEY
The most useful lessons of this issue to help you get ahead faster
Since day one of MT Knives, people have clamored for one of Patrick Roehrman’s handmade utility knives. The craftsman has created a loyal customer base through a Stakeholder Program offering perks such as exclusive knives.
Torrent Consulting values effective communication, despite having offices in three different time zones. Consulting Manager Eric Chambers shares how the company makes it work and celebrates accomplishments.
When Crystal Mapp started as marketing director at KPM, she found plenty of philanthropic efforts but no organizational structure. Now everyone can rally behind KPM CARES and find the perfect outlet for their sense of giving. PAGE 54
Get Google to Notice Your Business
If Google can’t find you, can customers? Probably not. Boost your search engine optimization by maintaining a mobile-friendly website that’s full of searchable phrases and by updating your Google profile. PAGE 55
Create an Evaluation Process that Works
In many offices, performance reviews are an undesirable necessity. The leaders at Willard Public Schools have a different outlook and encourage managers to provide frequent feedback based on objective measures rather than subjective opinions. PAGE 60
Focused on the Details
Celebrating its 70th year in business, Esterly, Schneider & Associates Inc., AIA still relies on its founding philosophy to make it in the 21st century business world. President Craig Schneider says the company has been able to expand across the nation by serving the local community well. PAGE 61
To-Dos and Don’ts
There’s always another thing you could add to your to-do list, but actually completing the tasks means writing them down, setting priorities and modifying as you go. PAGE 61
Can You Hear Me Now? Good.
Branding a Culture of Philanthropy
Community and Cocktails with Debbie Shantz Hart
Debbie Shantz Hart was raised to always seek out ways she could serve her community. She advises anyone looking to get more involved to educate themselves about the area’s problems, set manageable goals and spend less time talking and more time doing.
Insuring the Future
Kent and Rick Kyle don’t run their family insurance business like many others. Instead of designating a leader of Kyle Insurance Services Inc., the brothers each maintain and pay for their own portion of the company. Kent says this equality and balance is what has helped them be successful for four decades. PAGE 62
ur January/ February issue took readers inside the playbook of six local companies that became unstoppable. Here’s what you had to say about that article and more.
How the Big Dogs Eat “Love this profile of Jack Henry & Associates!” —Tammy Gilleland Jack Henry & Associates was one of the six businesses featured in our “How the Big Dogs Eat”cover story. Read more about Jack Henry and the five other businesses at biz417.com. —Editors
Breakthrough Award “Many congratulations to our chief diversity officer for this Biz 417 award!” —Missouri State University
“Yeah, Harold Wesley Pratt! Well deserved. Thank you for your commitment to making our community stronger.” —Marissa Weaver H. Wes Pratt received our first-ever Breakthrough Award. Read about Pratt’s accomplishments at biz417.com.—Editors
Think Summit Dear Gary, I wish to thank you and your staff for a great day at Think Summit. I am encouraged by the knowledge and passion shown by the presenters and for our 417 community going forward. Yes, I am putting pen to paper, as you and your staff do with regularity. As a member of the “silent generation,” I saw those who went before rebuild a world after WWII. I see in this new generation that same passion. As Siphiwe [Baleka] said, “It can start here and encompass the world.” Again, thank you. Sincerely, Harvey Hank “Looking forward to the future of 417-land after Think Summit! Well done Biz 417.” —Bethany Bishop
“Thanks Biz 417 for the live stream of Think Summit. Great presentation by Jeff Nene!” —Cris Swaters
“It was a great, well-organized event. Thank you for putting it together!” —Celeste Cramer
“Dr. [Kleinsmith] is seriously a one-of-a-kind leader with remarkable ideas. A man of brilliance that stands up for all!” —Christopher Davis Nixa Public Schools Superintendent Stephen Kleinsmith was joined by John Jungmann of Springfield Public Schools and Kent Medlin of Willard Public Schools for a panel about the future of education in 417-land.—Editors
Goal-Setting Tips “Discovered Marlene Chism[’s] success tips in Biz 417 this morning! Favorite: ‘merge the head and the heart’ when it comes to #GoalSetting”
HOW TO CONTACT BIZ 417 Social Media facebook.com/biz417 @biz417 linkedin.com/company/biz-417
Snail Mail Adrienne Donica/Letters to the Editor Biz 417 2111 S. Eastgate Ave., Springfield, MO 65809
Email Send your notes, feedback and story ideas to
Visit biz417.com, scroll to the bottom of the homepage and submit your questions and email address in the suggestion box. March/April 2017
“I wanted to work for myself and kind of be in charge of my own schedule.”
PHOTO COURTESY MT KNIVES; ILLUSTRATION COURTESY SHUTTERSTOCK
–Patrick Roehrman, owner of MT Knives. SEE STORY P. 20
Owner Patrick Roehrman shapes a handmade knife on the grinder at MT Knives.
BUSINESS BUDS Incubators are hatching up burgeoning businesses throughout 417-land. PAGE 17
20 16 16 16 17
Breakthrough Four to Follow Tips The Report
17 18 18 18
Q&A Nightstand Biz 100 Up Close Watercooler
18 20 21 21
Breakthrough Meet the Maker Style Nailed It Failed It
FOUR TO FOLLOW WITH MARK STEINER
BY: SYDNI MOORE
Mark Steiner, cofounder and CEO of GigSalad, reveals the accounts that keep him up-todate on the everchanging industry of entertainment.
“Bob writes how I write. It’s conversational. He’s opinionated, provocative and from the Northeast, like me.”
DIGITAL MUSIC NEWS
FUELING THE TARGET MARKET The Problem
Headquartered in Springfield, American National Property And Casualty Company competes with the big national insurance companies you see advertising on TV. “The top spenders in our space spend about $5 billion nationally,” says Scott Campbell, executive vice president and chief marketing officer, multiple line. Although American National offers the same products, the company’s advertising budget is much smaller, so the team needed to find a different way to compete.
The Big Idea
“The goal was really to engage with our market and our potential market in a different way,” Campbell says. After getting pitches from several advertising agencies, Campbell and his team eventually landed on launching Fuel Tube, a customizable online car show that curates videos for consumers based on their car interests. Fuel Tube uses an algorithm that works with YouTube to tailor content for each visitor. “We have a strong background of collector car insurance,” Campbell says. “That was kind of our toehold.”
The Learning Curve
“Any time you’re using new technology or trying something different, you’re going to go through various builds and things like that,” Campbell says. “There were a lot of little experience glitches and things that needed tuning.” But rather than throwing in the towel, the team used those problems to enhance the final product. “We are always tweaking things to improve the experience,” he says. “That never ends.”
“It keeps me up with what’s relevant in certain aspects of my business. It’s extremely current, straight-up music industry news.”
“This is where I keep up with concert touring, artist relations and representation.”
CONVERSATION WITH ALANIS MORISSETTE
“Alanis is an amazing combination of a great intelligence in social sciences and an artist. She’s an intellectual singer-songwriter and brilliantly emotionally aware.”
Initially, several advertising agencies pitched traditional revenue-enhancing ideas, but American National didn’t settle. “Then AMP out of Boston came in, and they just blew us away with this completely unique angle,” Campbell says. And so far, it seems that trying something different is paying off—people are spending 10 to 15 minutes on the platform when they visit, more people are visiting month to month, and American National is engaging with its target market in a way unlike any of its competitors.—Savannah Waszczuk
FIVE ON FIRE ANDREW HERR JANN HOLLAND GREG JOHNSON JEFF SHAW ELIZABETH WENTE
D IS FOR DIVERSITY Diversity in the workplace is a hot topic, and for good reason. A diverse workforce leads to more innovation and creativity, but in some industries, that’s easier said than done. “Tech is not the easiest thing to get into,” says The Geek Foundation Co-founder Krista Peryer, citing the industry’s overall homogeneity in gender and race. Peryer and Co-Founder Maranda Reynolds launched The Geek Foundation to bring more people of all backgrounds into tech. Below are a few of Reynolds’s tips for increasing diversity. BY: CLAIRE PORTER
Tip 1: Recognize that
“When we don’t see role models who look like us, we tend not to lean into that field of work, even if we might have all of the skills it takes to be great,” Reynolds says. When interviewing, try to have at least one person from that same minority group at the table so your recruit feels like he or she won’t be isolated in your office environment.
Tip 2: Be Aware of How You
Present Available Jobs
Reynolds suggests using neutral language—rather than asking for an aggressive, hard-driving person, look for a motivated, energetic person. Look at your maternity and time off policies, which might be discouraging women, who are still often primary caregivers, from applying. Use a blind screening process to remove clues about gender or race when hiring to prevent bias from creeping in.
Tip 3: Acknowledge Your Biases
“Be aware of unconscious biases coming from yourself and others in your company,” Reynolds says. “If you are intentional about being inclusive, you will cultivate the type of diverse team that studies show will improve your bottom line.” Maranda Reynolds BIZ417.COM
PHOTOS COURTESY FUEL TUBE, BY BRANDON ALMS
NUMBER OF TENANTS AT REGIONAL SMALL BUSINESS INCUBATORS
NUMBER OF TENANTS (AS OF JANUARY 2017)
Joseph Newman Innovation Center
Ozarks Small Business Incubator
PHOTOS COURTESY SHUTTERSTOCK, CITY OF SPRINGFIELD
Mary Ann Rojas
BY: SAVANNAH WASZCZUK
Carl G. Hefner Enterprise Center
These days, Springfield is a hotbed of entrepreneurship. On its 2016 list of Entrepreneurship Leaders, Business Facilities magazine declared Springfield a top-10 hub for tech startups, while rankings published by Forbes.com listed Springfield among the top U.S. metros for startup growth. Some of that economic momentum is propelled throughout 417-land by regional small business incubators, including Joplin’s Joseph Newman Innovation Center, West Plains’ Ozarks Small Business Incubator, Ozark’s Carl G. Hefner Enterprise Center and Springfield’s The eFactory. The incubators assist new businesses in many ways with programming, networking, resources and mentorship in addition to offering dedicated offices and flexible co-working spaces (not included in the chart above). Office tenants typically have access to meeting spaces and break rooms, certain utilities and something even more impactful: a vibrant community of entrepreneurs. “You have people here in our building that are really following their dreams and passions,” says Rachel Anderson, an entrepreneurial specialist at The eFactory. “To be around that, that’s a very motivating, encouraging, inspiring environment.” Those environments buttress entrepreneurs as their businesses mature and hire employees—lots of them. For example, tenants and graduates of the Ozarks Small Business Incubator and its training programs have created 235 jobs, while companies affiliated with the Joseph Newman Innovation Center have put roughly 420 people to work. And those numbers are sure to grow around the region as entrepreneurship continues to blossom.—Stephanie Towne Benoit BIZ417.COM
NOW HIRING Mary Ann Rojas began her role as the director of Workforce Development for the City of Springfield in June 2013. In a nutshell, she connects jobs to people and people to jobs—a task that will hopefully become even more common since the new Missouri Job Center opened in December 2016. We asked her about the new center, challenges in the market and plans for the future.
SMALL BUSINESS INCUBATOR
DOWN TO BUSINESS
BIZ 417: WHY WAS IT IMPORTANT TO OPEN THE NEW MISSOURI JOB CENTER ON THE NORTH SIDE OF SPRINGFIELD? Mary Ann Rojas: Well, we serve a diverse population, but one thing we found is that over 70 percent of individuals coming through our door that are receiving temporary assistance, or TANF (Missouri Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) benefits, live in Zone 1 and 2 in Greene County. We felt that it was important that they have access to services. If you live on the north side and you’re trying to get here to 2900 E. Sunshine St., it’s going to take you a while using public transportation. We found that we need to be where the people are, and we need to be where we can provide the services needed. Additionally, there are a lot of employers in that area that can tap into these folks. BIZ: HOW HAS SPRINGFIELD’S LABOR MARKET CHANGED SINCE YOU BEGAN YOUR CURRENT POSITION? MAR: Overall it has improved. We have a lot more people working than we did three or four years ago. But that’s true on the national scope. We still have a challenge, though, and that’s with the skills gap. Over 25 percent of everyone who walks through our door is over age 40. One of the biggest challenges with them—especially those who have been laid off from jobs where they worked for many years—is that they haven’t really developed the skill set that they need to compete for jobs now. BIZ: WHAT EFFORTS ARE IN PLACE TO RESOLVE THIS GAP? MAR: Through our various partnerships, including chambers of commerce, we have worked to identify what the issues are in various industries. One of the things that we just recently implemented in the last 30 days is our JET (Jobs, Education and Training) Fund, where any employer in the region can apply for training funds for their incumbent workers. That’s just another resource that we have available for those employers that see where new technologies are coming on board, so that they may have help to train their staff.
VISIT BIZ417.COM FOR MORE OF MARY ANN ROJAS’S INSIGHTS, PLUS HER EFFORTS TO GET A MORE DIVERSE POPULATION IN LEADERSHIP POSITIONS. March/April 2017
The battle for best new grocery store is on. This year, Ruby’s Market is opening on East Sunshine, Colorado-based Lucky’s Market is finding a home in south Springfield and Aldi is heading to Republic. We’ll be eating well this year. DOWNSIZING
UP CLOSE Commerce Bank President Bob Hammerschmidt tells us how he starts his day, when he checks his email and the last show he binge-watched. HIS MORNING ROUTINE:
Hammerschmidt wakes up at 5 a.m., drinks a big glass of water and exercises. He has breakfast before heading to the office at 6:45 where he reads and plans the day ahead, which starts at 7:45 a.m.
HOW OFTEN HE CHECKS HIS EMAIL:
He checks his email frequently, but not enough to make it a distraction. “Customer emails and texts require timely action just as any other request,” Hammerschmidt says.
HOW HE TRACKS HIS APPOINTMENTS:
“Outlook Calendar [is] a must for planning joint efforts.” He says he hasn’t used paper in years.
Cue the resume-making. Starting at the end of April, manufacturer Reckitt Benckiser is laying off 140 employees in Springfield and moving some operations to Florida. The company will continue to produce French’s Mustard, Cattlemen’s BBQ sauce and more in Springfield.
RIGHT TO WORKING
In February, Missouri joined 27 other states that have passed right-to-work legislation. Depending on who you ask, this could make the Show Me State more attractive to business investment or weaken unions statewide.
TV SERIES HE’S BINGE WATCHING:
Not one to binge-watch TV (other than Tom & Jerry when he was a kid), Hammerschmidt watches only local news.
WHO HE CONSIDERS A SUCCESSFUL INDIVIDUAL:
“The weight of one’s difficulties often affects the extent of their success. Such is the case with Jim Hagale, president of Bass Pro Shops. The story of Hagale Industries prepared Jim for helping John L. Morris and Bass Pro Shops become a ‘category king’ in retail.”
READ MORE ABOUT BOB HAMMERSCHMIDT AND THE REST OF THE BIZ 100 AT BIZ417.COM/BIZ100.
Springfieldians, don’t forget to head to the polls on April 4. Council members Ken McClure and Kristi Fulnecky face off for the mayor’s chair, among other council and school board races and issues on the ballot.
MAKING IT WORK FROM HOME The Problem
In 2007, Kena Roth was busy raising her two young boys. She wanted a career but also wanted the flexibility of a job that would allow her to continue working from home.
The Big Idea
Roth knew she enjoyed customer service. She researched work-at-home jobs on LinkedIn and various “Mastermind” groups that regularly meet online to share ideas. She then found work doing administrative tasks for an online company as a remote assistant. Simultaneously, she began creating her own virtual assistant practice, Kena Roth Business Solutions, by working for companies remotely. “I found clients on my own through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn,” she says. Roth offered free discovery calls on which potential clients could learn about her services. “You’ll never build your company if you’re afraid to ask,” she says.
The Learning Curve
Being hungry for work became a double-edged sword for Roth, who lost out after paying to work for some clients. “I don’t know how many times I paid for a job and learned you don’t pay for a job,” she says. This lesson helped Roth recognize her ideal client. As Roth’s reputation grew, so did her fear. “I was afraid no one would work with me if I raised my rates,” Roth says. When she finally did, not one client complained. “I’m good at what I do,” she says. “They have to see the value in that.”
Today, Roth has 12 clients and a team of six virtual assistants. She doubled her income last year and plans to again in 2017. She’s also created a training program for other parents wanting to follow in her footsteps. For other people looking to start their own company, Roth advises finding a mentor and doing your research. “Play the field for a bit,” she says. “Play around and see what you love.” —Julie Sedenko Davis Kena Roth BIZ417.COM
PHOTOS COURTESY PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE, BOB HAMMERSCHMIDT, SHUTTERSTOCK, KENA ROTH
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[MEET THE MAKER] He turned to his friend Jack Spirko, an entrepreneur who runs The Survival Podcast, for advice. Spirko believes small businesses can be successful if they can leverage the support of a small group of loyal customers. This has become the foundation of MT Knives. “By having that base of loyal supporters that are willing to support what you do—as long as you’re putting out a good product and they have something that they are willing to back—you can work for yourself,” Roehrman says. To engage loyal consumers, he developed MT Knives’ Stakeholder Program allowing 100 enthusiastic customers to purchase a stake in the business in exchange for perks like exclusive limited-edition knives. The move paid off: Every stakeholder position sold in six minutes flat. Since then, Roehrman has experimented with additional revenue streams—including his own instructional knife-sharpening DVD—but he believes the most important ingredient to his success is simple: continuing to craft knives that are a cut above the competition. “I guess one of my biggest business strategies is just making sure that I put out the best product possible,” he says.
Patrick Roehrman inspects a custom bevel knife for symmetry and for any scratches left from the previous grit.
FIND OUT THE STEPS ROEHRMAN TAKES TO CRAFT A KNIFE BY HAND AT BIZ417.COM.
BEHIND THE BUSINESS Date Opened: 2010
Number of Employees: Roehrman has no employees, preferring to handle all aspects of the business himself.
No matter how you slice it, craftsman Patrick Roehrman has found success making top-notch blades with his company, MT Knives.
From Mind to Market: Six to 18 months for custom knives; six to eight weeks for production models (He typically has models ready to ship within a day or so.)
lthough working as an electrical lineman was lucrative, Patrick Roehrman realized he wanted to spend more time with his family and work from home by going into business for himself. “I wanted to work for myself and kind of be in charge of my own schedule and have the freedom of that,” he says.
Roehrman discovered a passion for making utility knives as a hobby in spring 2010. Later that year, MT Knives was born, and today Roehrman spends his days crafting topquality knives prized by outdoorsmen and enthusiasts around the country. It wasn’t easy going from part-time craftsman to full-time business owner, though.
Most Popular Item: His best-selling knife is the Genesis I model, although the Beyond Razor Sharp DVD is the best-selling item overall. Maker’s Choice: “My favorite knife to make is when a customer says, ‘This is kind of what I want, but you just have fun with it,’” Roehrman says. However, due to high demand, he is not accepting custom orders currently. BIZ417.COM
PHOTOS COURTESY MT KNIVES
BY: STEPHANIE TOWNE BENOIT
#NAILED IT FAILED IT
DESK ENVY A mix of function and personality makes these must-have desk accessories the talk of the office.
Share your triumphs and stumbles with us on Twitter with the hashtag #naileditfailedit.
BY: HEATHER KANE
#Nailed It Failed It
Kena Roth, see her story on p. 18 Roth says she #FailedIt trying to do everything herself. “Being everything to everyone will burn a person out fast.” But a big #NailedIt moment was hiring a team. “The results and growth showed up,” she says, urging others to trust the process.
This ceramic smartphone speaker, ($32 at Flora and Fern), has a cool retro look but works with modern technology.
Hide all your adapters and cords on your desk in this map storage box ($149 at The Market) so your desk area stays uncluttered.
PHOTOS BY BRANDON ALMS
PHOTOS COURTESY MT KNIVES
These hand-crafted leather wallets ($45 at Springfield Leather Company) are the perfect compact size.
Never have to look for your glasses again with this Framework wood eyeglass holder ($19.95 at The Market).
#Nailed It Failed It CLYDE HOWELL, see his story on p. 51
Early on in his independent contracting days, Howell had two job interviews in one day. “I went to the first one, and I oversold myself,” he says. “The guy said, ‘I think you’re going to be bored here.’ And I walked out of there thinking, ‘Oh my goodness, I just blew this interview because I was too overzealous.’” Sure enough, he didn’t get the job. #FailedIt But at his next interview, when the interviewer asked why Howell was there, he said: “I’m here to help. You tell me what you need, and I’ll see if I can make it happen.” He was hired on the spot. #NailedIt
#Nailed It Failed It PATRICK ROEHRMAN, see his story on p. 20
Roehrman is a big fan of TV host Mike Rowe. “I reached out to him on his Facebook page hoping to get his attention. It worked; he not only commented on my post but called me on the phone!” #NailedIt During a flight to North Dakota, Roehrman started speaking to a seatmate. “I asked what he did for a living, and he said he was an actor. I asked if he had a hard time finding work. He said at first he had some trouble but he caught a few breaks, and it was pretty easy to find work.” It wasn’t until mid-conversation that Roehrman found out he was sitting next to Mark Ruffalo. #FailedIt March/April 2017
DOES EMOTION HAVE ANY PLACE
IN SALES? BY JOHN MARTINEZ
brain” (made up of the Amygdala, Prefrontal Cortex, Hippocampus, etc.) is able to process 3 to 4 million bits of data at a time. Our “emotional brains” are extremely powerful in comparison to our “rational and logical” brains. An interesting study that clearly illustrates this idea is the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT). The Iowa Gambling Task is widely used in research of cognition and emotion. A recent review listed more than 400 papers that made use of this paradigm.
made emotionally? Why does Harvard Business School professor Gerald Zaltman say that 95% of our purchase decisions take place unconsciously? The answer to these questions is that our conscious/rational/logical mind will always make up reasons to justify our unconscious/emotional decisions.
WHY CAN’T I REMEMBER MAKING ANY EMOTIONAL DECISIONS? So, how can a salesperson overcome objections? Unfortunately, they can’t. Only prospects can get over their own objections. It’s the salesperson’s job to help them do that through strategic question-
WHY DO WE THINK OUR DECISIONS ARE LOGICAL/ RATIONAL? The answer to this question can be found by looking at some recent studies of patients who have undergone a Corpus Callosotomy (a surgical procedure to control generalized seizures, primarily atonic seizures, by cutting the corpus callosum). The corpus callosum is a band of tissue that connects
ing. If a salesperson doesn’t know what a prospect’s concerns or objections are, they cannot help them. If we believe that decisions, including buying decisions, are made based on emotion, why is it that we are unable to think of countless examples of our own decisions being
and transmits messages from one side of the brain to the other (between the logical side of the brain and the emotional side of the brain). These studies have shown that even when the “rational or logical brain” had no idea what was going on with the patient, it would al-
DO EMOTIONS INFLUENCE WHAT WE BUY? Neurologist António Damásio argues, in his book Descartes’ Error: Emotion, Reason, and the Human Brain, that emotion plays a vital role in almost all decisions we make. This includes buying decisions. Through his studies of patients whose emotional areas of the brain are damaged, he found that no matter how intelligent these patients were, they were unable to make even the simplest decisions because they didn’t know how they “felt” about their options. WHY DO WE MAKE COMPLEX DECISIONS WITH OUR “EMOTIONAL BRAIN”? Now, we’ve all been taught through our entire lives that we should do everything in our power not to make decisions emotionally. So, why would humans be hardwired to do so? The answer is this…due to the shortcomings of our short term memory, we can only process decisions with 2 or 3 variables rationally. However, our “emotional
ways shamelessly fabricate a reason to justify whatever the patient was doing. Our logical and rational brains simply justify why we’ve made the emotional decisions that we do. It allows us to feel good about our emotional decisions. WHAT HAPPENS WHEN WE TRY TO SELL ON LOGIC? We now know, beyond any reasonable doubt, that decisions with more than a couple of simple variables are made emotionally. However, many salespeople still try to sell on logic. We do need logic to justify decisions, but we need to trigger emotion first in order to motivate our prospects to take action. Only after a sense of urgency is created should
find out WHY HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL PROFESSOR GERALD ZALTMAN SAys that 95% of our purchase decisions take place unconsciously. JOHN MARTINEZ
HOW EMOTIONS INFLUENCE B2B BUYING
Business Value vs Personal Value 2x
48% of B2B customers say they have wanted to buy a new solution but haven’t spoken up for fear of risks
Personal value has 2x as much impact as business value
74% of B2B buyers
see a business value
buyers who see a personal value will pay a higher price for a service
But just 14% of B2B buyers perceive a real difference in B2B supplier offerings
Only of buyers who see NO personal value will pay a higher price for a product
Only of prospective customers think B2B brands provide a personal value
71% of buyers
who see personal value will purchase a product
In B2B buying, emotions matter even more than logic and reason. DATA SOURCE: www.executiveboard.com/exbd-resources/content/b2b-emotion/pdf/promotion-emotion-whitepaper-full.pdf
logic be used to justify the decision that has already been made by the prospect (whether the prospect realizes it or not). This has a bigger impact on sales than you might think because we also now know that humans can’t be empathetic and logical at the same time through the work of Anthony Jack, an assistant professor of cognitive science at Case Western Reserve. This means that if we sell on logic, we actually shut down our prospect’s emotional brain and its ability to make a complex decision.
CONCLUSION The importance of emotion in decision making cannot be ignored, especially in sales. The most successful companies in the world recognize this. They use a specific questioning strategy designed to take their prospects from a rational problem to that problem’s true personal impact. If your sales team does not have a process in place to uncover emotion, I can guaranty you’re losing deals. Ignore this lesson at your own peril.
Midwest Revenue Group’s founder, John Martinez, is a sales development expert and a highly sought after consultant who brings humor, insight and real-world advice to his audiences. Midwest Revenue Group is a sales development firm that helps companies and professional service firms achieve improvement in sales performance. His practical, street-smart approach to prospecting and selling has helped hundreds of sales executives, business owners and independent sales professionals increase their sales and profits with more control, greater confidence and less effort. FIND OUT HOW YOU CAN IMPROVE YOUR SALES PROCESS AT MIDWESTREV.COM
The 2017 Women Who Mean Business are (clockwise from left): Robin Robeson, executive vice president and chief operating officer at Guaranty Bank; Elle Feldman, owner of Elleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Patisserie and Lavare Day Spa; Crista Hogan, executive director of the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association and Springfield Metropolitan Bar Foundation; and Marla Calico, president and CEO of the International Association of Fairs and Expositions.
WOMEN WHO MEAN
e asked you to tell us about the region’s most powerful, game-changing women, and you answered with dozens of professionals who are leading the way in their fields. After examining candidate after candidate from an array of highly qualified nominees, we chose these four fearless women who stood out from the rest. This year’s Women Who Mean Business are four dynamic professionals who are confidently leaving their mark on the 417-land business scene. BY: SAVANNAH WASZCZUK | PHOTOS BY: CHUCK TRAVERS | ART DIRECTION BY: HEATHER KANE STYLED BY: WORTH NEW YORK | SHOT ON LOCATION AT: OASIS HOTEL AND CONVENTION CENTER
Biz 417’s B-School Breakfast Series: Women Who Mean Business
Get some face time with the 2017 Women Who Mean Business at this high-energy networking breakfast. Find out how to develop your leadership skills, advance your career, embrace your big break and more.
When: 7:30–9 a.m., April 13 Where: Andy B’s Entertainment
Tickets: biz417.com/bschool BIZ417.COM
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Guaranty Bank
obin Robeson says the positions she’s held at four banks, a consulting company and a technology software company all prepared her for her current role: the woman who provides leadership, management and vision at Guaranty Bank. Here’s what she learned at each stage of her career.
1986: Part-time Teller, First National Bank
Robeson had a part-time job at Sears when she was a student at the University of Missouri, but things quickly changed after she waited on a bank executive one day. “At the end of the transaction, he gave me his card and said, ‘You know, I’d love it if you’d think about coming in and working for us as a teller,’” she says. When Robeson stopped by the bank a couple of weeks later, she was hired on the spot. 1988: Management Trainee, Boatmen’s Bank
Robeson graduated from Mizzou on a Friday, and she started a position in the management training program at Boatmen’s Bank in St. Louis the following Monday. “That job gave me the opportunity to work in all different departments of the bank,” Robeson says. “One of the things I realized there was that if I really want to move up in banking—and I wanted to be an executive one day—I had to spend time on the revenue-producing side of the business.” She eventually became a portfolio analyst there.
women do that as much as they probably should. You have to just go for it sometimes, even if you don’t think you’re 100 percent qualified. I almost think that every position I’ve ever gotten I wasn’t quite 100 percent qualified for.” 2007: Vice President of Corporate Services, Duck Creek Technologies
Robeson was still at Commerce at the start of 2007. “That’s one of my biggest missteps—staying in that job too long,” she says. “I felt that to take my career to the next level I needed to do something completely different.” So she left the familiar banking world and began working for software development company Duck Creek Technologies. “It was the best thing that I could have ever done,” she says. Although she went into a high-level role in a whole new industry, she says it was important that she was honest. “My experience is that people respond when you’re authentic,” Robeson says. “If I didn’t know something, I’d tell them. And I think that me being authentic in that way helped me to gain respect because I didn’t pretend to know everything.”
1991: Account Executive, FISI-Madison Financial
Next Robeson went from St. Louis to Nashville to work for a bank consulting company. “I would go into community banks and help them grow,” she says. Robeson did so well that the company asked her to cover the four-state area of Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas and Oklahoma. “That territory was kind of a mess,” Robeson says. But she saw it as an opportunity to work her hardest and try her best to clean it up. If you do that, she says, “There really isn’t anywhere to go but up.” 1996: Assistant Vice President and Regional Retail Sales Manager, Commerce Bank
Although Robeson started out as assistant vice president and regional retail sales manager, she mastered several positions at Commerce Bank, including an assignment in business development and a position in which she started Commerce’s private banking for the region in 1999. Three years after that, she changed roles again. “In 2002, I was promoted again to the market executive for the Commerce Trust Company,” Robeson says. “That job had sat open for a period of time because they just weren’t finding the right person. I kept raising my hand and saying, ‘Hey, I can do this job,’ but they’d say, ‘Well, you’re only 36.’ But I knew that had nothing to do with my ability, so I just kept raising my hand.” This persistence and confidence is a key to success, Robeson says. “You have to make it known that you want more responsibility—that you want to grow and that you want to develop,” she says. “You have to be more direct. Sometimes I don’t think that
2012: Chief Operating Officer, Guaranty Bank
When the position for Chief Operating Officer at Guaranty Bank opened up, Robeson was ready to return to banking. “A COO position was always the position I thought was right for me,” she says. “And the fact that it was at a community bank—it was like a dream come true, really.” Her career path was different than she could have ever imagined, but she was happy to get into her dream role. “I believe that because I had always done a really good job and had great relationships with people—the fact that I always did what I said I was going to do—it’s always been my belief that if you do those kinds of things, the right opportunity will present itself to you. People will remember that.” 2017: The Next Big Thing
Robeson doesn’t plan on leaving Guaranty Bank until the day she retires. That being said, she does plan on moving its corporate offices—in fact, a new building is well underway. At press time, Robeson said she and her team expect to be moved into the new location at Farmers Park by this September. “We have a 103-year history, and we’re very proud of that,” she says. “But like all organizations, we have to grow, we have to evolve, and we have to stay relevant. That’s what this new building is. It’s very exciting because it’s going to show the community how we see the Guaranty Bank of the future.”
A CRUCIAL COMPONENT OF ROBESON’S SUCCESS WAS HER SUPPORT SYSTEM. VISIT BIZ417.COM FOR HER ADVICE ON SURROUNDING YOURSELF WITH THE RIGHT PEOPLE. BIZ417.COM
A WORD FROM HER MENTOR
RELATIONSHIP: Robeson first met Twitty nearly 15 years ago when the two were both serving on the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks Board of Directors. “From the start, she was someone who has encouraged and mentored me over many years and through many opportunities and situations,” Robeson says. TWITTY’S TAKE:
“You know how they say opposites attract?” Twitty says. “Well, that’s us. Robin is very serious-minded and detail-oriented. She doesn’t speak until she has something to say. For someone of her age, I found her to have a very mature approach to some of the issues on the board we needed to address quickly. You know how sometimes people just want to talk about themselves? Not Robin. She was really more interested in asking questions and listening to people’s thoughts and ideas.” The two worked together to make the board successful. In fact, the board started holding its signature event, Taste of the Ozarks, the first year Robeson was president. BIZ417.COM
Executive Director, Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association and Springfield Metropolitan Bar Foundation
rista Hogan has spent much of her life dealing with personal struggles, but she never let them interfere with her professional success. Her perseverance through upheaval has made her a steadfast leader in the local law field.
Crista Hogan uses an analogy to explain how she’s accomplished so much in her lifetime. “I’m a distance runner,” she says. “I compare a lot of things to that and to the training it takes.” Hogan has completed three marathons, and her total number of half-marathons, her signature race, is 33. “You can’t just wake up, lace up your shoes and say, ‘I’m going to run a marathon today,’” Hogan says. “But maybe you can go out, and you can run a half mile. Then soon you can run a mile. Then—if you’ve trained—a marathon isn’t really that hard. That’s if you’ve put in all the miles leading up to it. But if you’re not prepared for it, it’ll kill you.” Running in these races, as well as putting in the miles and miles of training they require, has been one of Hogan’s few constants over multiple decades of ups and downs. She had her first child in her third year of law school, then later had two more children with her first husband, Jim, who they later learned had a severe mental illness. After years of trying to make it work, the two eventually divorced. Later in life, Hogan’s second husband, Tedd, was diagnosed with terminal cancer. “I know the minute that it happened,” Hogan says. “I know the day, and I know the minute. Because he died seven months later, but a lot died in that moment.” Three months prior to Tedd’s death, Jim committed suicide. Despite these personal struggles, Hogan has done whatever it takes to not only survive but also to succeed. She worked as an attorney to support her family, but she left private practice almost 15 years ago to become the executive director of the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association, an organization that was struggling when she joined but is now prospering under her leadership. Since Hogan started her role at the Bar, the association has received four national awards for programs and publications, among many other recognitions. The membership of the organization has grown from roughly 500 to a thriving 1,000, and Hogan, with the organization’s other leaders, created the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Foundation. The foundation has allowed thousands of people from all walks of life to participate in free public education and community outreach projects. Hogan has greatly expanded the bar’s professional education programming BIZ417.COM
and brought its publications in-house, all while making it a financially stable organization and even accomplishing a decades-long goal of purchasing a building to house it. Hogan has also prevailed outside of her career. A smile takes over her face as she shares the fact that she’s found love again—she’s happily engaged to her fiancé, Abram McGull. She’s also kept herself involved with various volunteer organizations, including being a member of and then president of the Junior League of Springfield. “Frankly, my experience in Junior League is probably what helped me get this job even more than being a lawyer,” Hogan says. “I’d run some small businesses through Junior League, and I’d dealt with budgets, personnel and projects.” As many of Hogan’s interests and pastimes tend to do, Hogan’s time in Junior League helped her develop transferable skills, something she says is important for everyone in all stages of their lives and careers. “Learn as much as you can,” she says. “As an employer, if I have five people come in for a position, I’m going to pick the one who’s going to make my life easier. They’re going to know something I don’t know or know how to do something that I don’t know how to do.” And as far as professional advice goes, Hogan is frequently asked, and she has plenty to share— just not over lunch. Two years ago a summer law clerk wanted advice and invited Hogan out for the midday meal. “I hate going to lunch,” Hogan says. But instead of turning the woman down, Hogan made a suggestion. “I said, ‘I have a better idea. Do you run?’” Hogan says. “She said yeah, so she came along running with me.” This leads to Hogan’s next point: If you’re asking something of someone else and you want to stand out from the crowd, give some thought to what’s in it for them. “If you want to pick their brain, pick their brain while they get to do something they like to do,” Hogan says. For her, it’s running, the same pastime she uses as a part of her own professional development. “What I’ve found is that the women I run with—literally, run with, because the women I run with are all women lawyers—we get business done while we’re running,” she says. And she also gets a little something for herself—a bit more training for that next big race.
A WORD FROM HER MENTOR
Jan Horton RELATIONSHIP: Horton
was friends with Hogan’s mother, and she has known Hogan since Hogan was a teenager. The two had many professional conversations over the years, and Hogan even asked Horton for advice before leaving her private practice and taking on her role at the Bar. HORTON’S TAKE:
“She’s always been extremely intelligent,” Horton says. “She’s intelligent and quick witted.” What stands out the most about Hogan, though, is her approach to people. “She has a very direct approach to people, which is very engaging,” Horton says. “She marches right in and gets to know people. I think that’s a very effective way of handling your work as well as your personal life.”
Owner, Elle’s Patisserie Owner and Aesthetician, Lavare Day Spa
lle Feldman is a popular name in Springfield’s professional scene—she’s both a top-notch aesthetician and the head confectioner at Elle’s Patisserie. What most people don’t know, though, are the many obstacles she faced on her long path to owning two small businesses.
Elle Feldman gets a bit teary eyed when she speaks of earning her college degree. “Graduation day was the best day of my life,” she says. “I wasn’t expected to go to college—neither of my parents went to college. I didn’t think I was book smart when I was younger. I tried really hard in school, but I struggled a lot with math and science, so I didn’t think I could do anything academic.” That’s actually why she started in theater. As a young woman, she saw it as her ticket to success. Then she went to Alverno College, a four-year private liberal arts college that focuses on ability-based learning, and she thrived. “It was like the whole world opened up to me then,” she says. It was the confidence Feldman found at this Milwaukee school that greatly changed her future. She soon found herself living in Springfield with her husband, Jon, and then turning her hobbies into a way to earn a living. “What I say to people is that if you want to be an entrepreneur, or even just enjoy your job, do something that you would do for free,” she says. Feldman used to make truffles and other sweet treats for friends, then she started making them at her first small business, Lavare Day Spa, as a perk for guests. This eventually led to her opening her second business, Elle’s Patisserie, in 2011. And although you’ll never see her wearing a power suit as she’s whipping up a batch of ganache, you’ll often find her in the spotlight among other professional women in the region. She shares the words of wisdom she’s acquired over the years.
On advice for young women starting their careers:
“Surround yourself with a support system of positive people and people who lift you up, and don’t hang with the people who bring you down. I eliminated some personal relationships, and that was hard to do, but it has been really good to me. I’ve also attracted all of these new amazing people and had amazing new experiences. I read this article that said to think of the top five people you spend the most time with— well, you are a combination of those people. Well, think about who those people are. If they don’t have traits you want, don’t hang out with them.” On leadership:
“I’ve had people tell me that people listen to what I say and look up to what I say and have respect for what I say and do. Because of that, I’ve always felt that I have to be really careful and P.C. I have always been pretty private about my opinions on politics. As a business owner, I always felt like I had to be. But I’m starting to change that. I’m wondering if it would benefit women in general if I were to be more vocal about my perspective on it all because maybe there are other women out there who wish they had women like me that they could relate to. Maybe they’d be like, ‘Okay, great, we can support each other.’ So I’m starting to think that maybe I need to be a little bit more vocal about that.” On giving back:
On creating a good work-life balance:
“This is really hard, and I’m going to be real on it—I don’t think it’s beneficial for any woman to sugarcoat it. Now just because this is my truth doesn’t mean it’s anybody else’s truth, but I will do what it takes at all costs to get it all done. I don’t ask for help, but that’s a problem. You have to start learning how to ask for help and letting go of a little bit of control. You have to give people time to learn so they can help you in the way you want to be helped. I didn’t, and I did it all myself, and I got sick. Five years ago, I developed an autoimmune disease. I wasn’t eating right, I wasn’t sleeping, and I wasn’t working out. Sometimes you have to kind of hit rock bottom to learn that you just have to take care of yourself and create boundaries.”
“That has been something that has been instilled in me since I was born. I didn’t realize it then, but it comes from my grandfather. He was a huge volunteer for Catholic charities, both when he was working and after he retired. He led by example. I’ve always felt that it was important that I continue that, even for his legacy. With my businesses I’m able to give back in a way that I never could before. I would never be able to just write a check for the amount that we donate or the things that we sponsor—we donate an average of $6,000 in product, services and money per year. It’s really hard to say yes to donate significantly to everyone, but I always try to give something, even if it’s just a stack of coupons for a buy one, get one free truffle or a free truffle.”
A WORD FROM HER MENTOR
Dawn Balistreri RELATIONSHIP: Balistreri
first met Feldman when the two performed together nearly 30 years ago. “At the time, she and I were in an openended one-act play that raised awareness for the Milwaukee AIDS Project,” Balistreri says. Balistreri is also a professor at Feldman’s alma mater, Alverno College, and she had Feldman as a student in several classes and worked with her in multiple studentrun organizations. BALISTRERI’S TAKE:
“She was always so grown up and just so awesome,” Balistreri says. “She was always ready to offer assistance and to give to other students. She made time for everything.” And as Elle went on with her career, the two continued their relationship—and they’re still friends today. “One of my biggest pieces of advice is to always say yes to opportunities,” Balistreri says. “Well, she listened to that, and she took action.”
GET INVOLVED The 2017 Women Who Mean Business know that getting involved is one of the first steps to success. Start making your own connections with the help of these local women-focused organizations.
Created by The eFactory and The Network, Rosie supports, assists and serves as an advocate network for current and prospective female founders, business owners and leaders in the greater Springfield area. The goal of Rosie is to help women of all ages and professions connect, partner and collaborate as well as to increase support and access to resources for women in the areas of professional development, business assistance and leadership. How to Join: Online at efactory.missouristate.edu/what-we-do/communityseries/rosie
Junior League of Springfield, MO
With more than 600 members, the Junior League of Springfield, MO, is an organization committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving the community through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable in nature, and the group is restricted to women 21 years or older who demonstrate an interest in and commitment to voluntarism. How to Join: Attend an informational meeting and complete new member requirements during the annual May–April time frame. Find additional info online at jlspringfield.org/joinjls/newmembership.
The Association for Women in Communications (AWC)
Founded in 1909, AWC now has more than 2,000 members nationally. The local chapter is focused on both personal and professional development of its members: women working in the communications field. The association also seeks to connect professional women, recognize the work and accomplishments of members and create a network of women supporting women. How to Join: Attend a monthly luncheon, hosted the first Tuesday of every month at 425 Downtown. Visit awcspringfieldmo.org for more information.
American Association of University Women (AAUW)
AAUW is a national organization with state and local branches. Its goal is to break through educational and economic barriers for women and girls. It’s open to women and men holding an associate (or equivalent), bachelor’s or higher degree from a regionally accredited college or university. How to Join: Find virtual and in-person events at aauw.org or aauwmo.org, or contact Donna Medlin at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Women in Science and Entrepreneurship (WISE)
Run by the Missouri Cures Education Foundation, WISE is an opportunity to bring women in the fields of science, research and entrepreneurship together to network. It’s a state-wide group, but the Springfield organization meets once per year each fall. College students are also welcome to attend. How to Join: Sign up online at missouricures.org. You’ll receive a monthly newsletter and an invitation to the organization’s annual Springfield event.
Working Women in Nixa (WWIN)
Organized by the Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce, this group includes female business leaders who are chamber members. The primary goal is to help women leaders excel professional and personally. How to Join: Meetings are held on the third Tuesday of the month at the Chamber’s new location (106 W. Sherman Way, Suite 6, Nixa). Learn more by calling 417-725-1545 or emailing email@example.com.
The Women’s Initiative
Established in 2013 by Arvest Bank, The Women’s Initiative aims to empower women of all ages and professions and to offer enhanced opportunities for education, mentoring, friendship and leadership development. How to Participate: The Women’s Initiative hosts two events per year. If you’re interested in attending, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Marla Calico President and CEO, International Association of Fairs and Expositions
s a hungry, eager college student, Marla Calico had a somewhat unexpected start to her career when she took a work study job at the Ozark Empire Fair. Little did she know she would spend the next 40 years working her way up the ranks in the industry. Calico served several roles with the Ozark Empire Fair including the leading general manager role for 10 years, and she became a committee member of the International Association of Fairs and Expositions (IAFE) organization early on. Her first IAFE role lead to many more, including roles as a speaker and, eventually, chair of the board. Today she’s the leader of IAFE, which connects 2,000 organizations—roughly 1,200 member fairs and 800 associate members—around the world. We chatted with her to trace her path to success and find out what she’s learned along the way.
Biz 417: You were named the assistant manager of the Ozark Empire Fair before you even graduated college. How did you take on such a large role at such a young age?
Marla Calico: I was very, very fortunate when I started at the fair because my mentor was Dan Fortner, who at that point in time had taken over being manager of the fair and was working for no salary because the fair was in such dire financial straits. We had to work so hard to do everything because we were so far in debt, and we didn’t have any money. So I was out on the tractor with him; he taught me how to do basic electrical and basic plumbing. And then we’d go right back into the office and work on marketing. I got a really unique exposure into all facets of running the fair. It was sort of a natural progression, and then eventually when Dan announced his retirement, our board of directors didn’t even look anywhere else—they asked me to take the job. Biz: What are some of your proudest moments throughout your career?
MC: When I was at the Ozark Empire Fair, it would have been successfully seeking and obtaining funding to create the E-Plex and then seeing that through its construction. Also, leading the fair to reach nearly four times the annual revenue it had when I first moved into the fair’s management team. Serving as the chair of the board of the IAFE BIZ417.COM
was an amazing experience, and at the time I thought I could receive no higher honor in the association. But then I was absolutely stunned and honored beyond belief when I was named to our association’s Hall of Fame in 2012. Biz: What are some small things that people can do to make a big difference in their professional career?
MC: One of the things that I had experienced in college through one of my classes was the importance of being out there. When you go out and you walk into a room, you have to be shaking hands. You get out there, you start taking business cards, and then you go and sit with someone besides someone else you know. A lot of people are uncomfortable doing that, but you have to make those connections. It’s almost getting comfortable with being uncomfortable. Biz: For you, it seems to come naturally. But how do you encourage less-outgoing individuals to be more confident?
MC: It’s truly about being comfortable in your own skin. Don’t try to be someone else—be comfortable with who you are, and capitalize on your strengths. For me, people know about my smile, and they know I’m going to walk right up to them, greet them and shake their hand. I’m very good at remembering people’s names and something about them, and so I capitalize on that, too. So what is it that you can capitalize on? Biz: Do you feel you have faced any particular challenges as a woman?
MC: I’ve never had to face a situation of outright harassment due to my sex. I did have an interaction where—and I remember this very clearly—I was at the fair, and a contractor we were working with, a good ol’ boy of some sort, was standing in front of me, and my maintenance manager who was easily 10 years younger than me was standing right next to me. But he was a big guy, a football player. The contractor wouldn’t look at me and talk to me; he just kept looking at my maintenance guy. Well I finally strong-armed my maintenance man and stood up right in front of him and said, “If you want a decision, you’re going to have to talk to me.” Sometimes you have to do that. Now, I’m not going to do that all the time, but the situation called for it. You gotta be bold if you have to.
A WORD FROM HER MENTOR
Barbara Renner RELATIONSHIP: Renner
and Calico worked together when Calico became involved with the IAFE. “Barbara was manager of the North Idaho Fair and the first woman to serve as the chair of the Board of Directors of the IAFE,” Calico says. “I was the second.” RENNER’S TAKE:
“She was always a very positive person,” Renner says. “Probably one of the things that stands out the most about her is the ease [with which] she communicates with all facets of the population. She is a great communicator and a great listener.” When Calico first joined the IAFE, it was a maledominated organization. It isn’t today, though, and Renner says a lot of that is because of Calico. “What I learned from her is that anything is possible,” Renner says. And she says others can learn a lot from Calico, too. “Be positive and always have a smile on your face,” Renner says. “Be able to listen and be motivated to work toward a goal.”
CALICO’S EMPLOYEES SAY SHE’S A GREAT MOTIVATOR AND A LEADER. LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW SHE LEADS THE WAY AT BIZ417.COM BIZ417.COM
Excellence in Technology Award Winners CORPORATE AWARDS Community Impact: Convoy of Hope Most Innovative Startup: Eagle Speak Enterprise Technology: Murney Associates, Realtors Software Application: PaperWise IT Service Provider: Alexander Open Systems G.E.M. (Government, Education and Medical): Mercy Springfield Best Use of A/V: Convoy of Hope
INDIVIDUAL AWARDS IT Executive of the Year: Jeff P. Morrissey Security Professional of the Year: Shannon McMurtrey Rising Star: Heath Rust Engineer of the Year: Logan Swank Customer Experience Leader: Richard Reding
VISIT BIZ417.COM FOR PROFILES OF ALL 11 WINNERS.
Innovation relies on action, and no one knows that better than the 11 winners of Biz 417â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Excellence in Technology Awards presented by the Association of IT Professionals of the Ozarks. The awards honor the hard work and dedication of companies and individuals in 417-land. These winners are lifelong learners, risk-takers and leaders in their fields. Read on to learn about these tip top techies. BY: ADRIENNE DONICA | PHOTOS BY: BRAD ZWEERINK
The Forward Thinkers
Murney Associates, Realtors, led by CEO Twila Hillme (back row, right), leads the technology team—which includes, clockwise from bottom right, Ashley Hughes, Kyle Drenon, Jim Roberts and Daniel Call—to anticipate agents’ and customers’ needs.
“I was impressed with Murney Associates’ understanding of how important a customized technology solution was to meeting the needs of their agents and their agents’ clients. The details in their application provided evidence of a very progressive company that understands the role technology will play in their future success.”—Sherry Coker, executive director of the Mid-America Technology Alliance
PHOTO COURTESY SHERRY COKER
Enterprise Technology Award 36
ince 1997, Murney Associates, Realtors has been connecting its clients with the homes of their dreams. Naturally the company has some talented salespeople, and for the better half of a decade, management has been helping its agents work smarter thanks to a host of mostly proprietary software applications. The Murney team has produced six applications (all are free) since 2010 designed to make agents’ jobs more efficient and customers’ experiences more satisfying. Agents can find homes to scout more easily, access convenient yet personalized branded presentations, refresh their skills from home, manage their client relationships in real time and even process a sale without printing a single sheet of paper. Meanwhile, customers can search all properties on the market in 417-land through the map-based Murney App. “I think a new generation of homebuyers is coming onto the market and along with that a new generation of agents to join the fold at Murney,” says Director of Marketing Kyle Drenon. “A focus on technology is important for those generations.” Likewise, Director of IT Jim Roberts sees it as a matter of accessibility. “Every agent has their phone, so whatever we can do to get all the information they need readily accessible on their phone as well as to the client has kind of been a big push for the last couple of years,” Roberts says. Roberts has personally built three of the company’s applications: the Agent Tour Module, which populates a list of nearby homes for an agent to view on behalf of buyers; the Listing Presentation tool that brands presentations with Murney logos along with an agent’s information; and a paperless transaction system, which has improved communication between agents and the closing department during the processing phase of a contract. Denver-based developer Booj has also been integral to Murney’s technology, helping with projects such as the customer relationship manager that agents use to keep track of their clients. “Online inquiries are just commonplace, so [clients] just expect to have a paperless transaction as well. They expect to have communication that’s immediate, so all of those tools that allow an agent to be able to have that kind of efficiency was something we definitely needed to provide for the agents as well,” says Relocation Director Daniel Call, who oversees Murney’s technology initiatives. To make sure its 470 agents are staying ahead of the competition, the company also launched the Murney Training Center in 2015. This online learning management system offers brief courses on a variety of subjects like contract writing and social media that are meant to serve as primers for longer in-person classes or refreshers for skills employees want to hone. The team continues to work on new technologies to streamline agents’ daily tasks and engage customers in new and exciting ways. “I feel like we’ve been ahead of the trends in the real estate game, if you will, and try to anticipate changes in the market and handle that with advanced technology,” Drenon says. No doubt the innovations will just keep coming.
6:00 a.m. Morrissey’s internal
1:30 p.m. Morrissey meets
alarm clock wakes him up around 6 o’clock every morning. He gets ready for the day sans coffee (he’s never been a fan), and on his way out the door he grabs a breakfast sandwich to eat at the office.
with his leadership team, which includes the director of computer services, the director of networking and telecommunications and the information security officer. Morrissey updates them on results of the Administrative Council meeting, then they share updates from their own departments.
7:00 a.m. Morrissey eases into the day with a little peace and quiet at his office in Cheek Hall. “No one else really gets here until 8, so that gives me an hour of some alone time,” Morrissey says. “I look at my calendar, and I go through my emails and get prepped for my first set of meetings.”
8:00 a.m. When the Information Services Division was created, Morrissey was added to President Clif Smart’s Administrative Council. The 17-member group meets every Monday to share updates from their respective departments. Each person has so much to share, so the meeting usually lasts about two hours.
10:00 a.m. Around midmorn-
3:00 p.m. By midafternoon, Morrissey is ready for a change of pace. Sometimes this means walking around campus to check out a new computer lab or visiting a colleague to discuss a new initiative. “You can become very quickly a slave to your keyboard,” he says. “So I tend to do a lot of interaction personally with folks and build relationships like that.” Then he
focuses on creating strategic plans, reviewing policy or doing research for an upcoming project.
5:00 p.m. Morrissey heads home to spend time with Pam. “I try to shut off the work world for about an hour or so,” he says. The couple spends time walking their dog, golfing or doing chores before sitting down for dinner.
7:30 p.m. As much as he tries not to, Morrissey typically retreats to his home office to finish up some work. The TV in his office is on low unless he is practicing a presentation for the next day.
IT Executive of the Year
ot many people get the chance to pioneer a new department at a mid-sized university, but that’s exactly where Jeff P. Morrissey finds himself. The Springfield native and chief information officer at Missouri State University heads up the system’s Information Services Division, which was created in January 2016. With a 76-person staff, Morrissey is responsible for providing MSU faculty, staff and students the technology and support services they need for an effective, secure learning environment. Here’s how the Central Texas College alum spends a typical Monday at the office.
“I was impressed with the wide range of technology Jeff handles. He facilitates an open access learning environment, while still protecting the organization’s information. Jeff is a shining example of an IT executive in our community who successfully balances his time between strategic executive responsibilities and actively investing in and mentoring his employees.”—Sarah Evans, SharePoint and project administrator for Storee Construction
10:00 p.m. Morrissey ends the day by watching the 10 o’clock news on KY3 and then turns in for the night.
By getting an early start, Jeff P. Morrissey, chief information officer at Missouri State University, is able to pack his day full of strategic planning and one-on-one development.
ing, Morrissey might have another meeting, but he tries to only have four hours’ worth of meetings in any given day. “I try to really schedule some time every day on my calendar that I can sit and actually produce the deliverables that I need to bring to the table,” he says.
PHOTOS COURTESY SARAH EVANS
11:30 a.m. Morrissey doesn’t like meetings that conclude at noon or start right at 1 p.m. Instead he spends his long lunch hour eating a sack lunch at his office; chatting for a few minutes with his wife, Pam; and getting ready for his afternoon. On the rare occasion that he eats off-site, he’s probably at Jimm’s Steakhouse. BIZ417.COM
The Data Defender T
“Shannon is committed to remaining on the cutting edge of issues affecting cybersecurity through developing himself as an expert in the field. Sharing his knowledge through speaking engagements and involvement in community events continues to have a positive impact on cybersecurity professionals locally and across the country.”—Barbie Kolb, technology solutions instructor for GO CAPS
PHOTO COURTESY BARBIE KOLB
Security Professional of the Year
hink about everywhere your phone goes in a day. Restaurants, hotel conference rooms, the grocery store, the gym. The list goes on, but your phone probably spends most of its time at your office. Unbeknownst to you, your phone or any other mobile device might have been compromised with harmful software, opening the door for potential hackers who are waiting to exploit you or your company. This is the kind of hypothetical scenario that cybersecurity expert Shannon McMurtrey warns against. “Cybersecurity’s one of those areas that businesses often think of as an expense, and they want to kind of minimize and that’s one of the reasons things are as dire as they are because we haven’t had the investment and the resources that are needed,” he says. McMurtrey has had an interest in the intersection between business and technology for decades. As an undergraduate at Missouri State University, he switched his major from computer information systems to marketing so he could learn how the business community could best use computers. After earning an MBA with a concentration in computer information systems, McMurtrey and his business partner, Bryan Whitaker, released a shopping cart software called Cart32 through their business, McMurtrey/Whitaker & Associates Inc. After co-founding an online shopping cart “I really learned security at Cart32,” he says. “As a software, Shannon payments company on the internet, the bad guys McMurtrey realized were interested in our credit card data, so we had the importance of cybersecurity, a subject to get good at security.” he now teaches at Drury In 1998, McMurtrey started teaching software University. classes at Missouri State. In the mid-aughts, he began teaching a cybersecurity course and went on to create the university’s online cybersecurity graduate program, which was ranked No. 2 in the nation by Online MBA Today in 2016. After working at MSU for almost 20 years, McMurtrey joined the faculty as an assistant professor at Drury University this past July where he also expanded the curriculum with a cybersecurity leadership certificate geared toward businesspeople and others regardless of technical knowledge. “[Business leaders and technology users] have a deep understanding of risk on a lot of different levels, but they don’t understand cyber risk almost at all,” he says. “So that’s really what we’re trying to address.” Protecting your business starts with what McMurtrey calls “basic cyber hygiene.” This entails practices such as password protecting all your devices with long, unique passkeys; using two-factor authentication; not clicking on suspicious links in emails and installing software updates, which are usually security-related, as they become available. “The thing is, you just don’t want to be the slowest gazelle in the jungle,” McMurtrey says. “If you’re using a thumbprint or a long password, you’re harder to compromise than the next person who might not be using anything, so the bad guys are just going to move to the weakest link and that’s who’s going to get exploited.” BIZ417.COM
The Streamliners W
PHOTO COURTESY RAYANNA ANDERSON
Software Application Award
e don’t have to tell you how many moving parts go into owning and managing a business. Marketing, sales and customer service are crucial but don’t even account for producing your deliverables for clients or for creating a strong sense of collaboration among your team. And as your business scales, so do those departments and tasks. Dan Langhofer knows the feeling despite being CEO of PaperWise, a technology company built around improving efficiency in the workplace. “Just like everybody else, I don’t have one place to go to tackle this together,” Langhofer says, noting that this isn’t the case at hospitals where doctors and nurses see all a patient’s vitals on one screen. So PaperWise set out to change that and over the course of 18 months developed ONE, a cloud-based web application that allows for increased communication within an office—and not just between employees. “The platform is truly a communications platform that allows us to send messages and communicate to third party applications, to employees, to clients, to whoever needs to be part of that communication channel,” says Director of Business Development Eric Wubbena. Wubbena explains that most software applications, such as QuickBooks and Slack, have limited integration capacities. Because of this, employees constantly must change the platforms they’re working in, which actually causes decreased productivity. Instead, ONE integrates with a company’s applications and presents information in one place. “Keep all the software you’ve got,” Langhofer says. “We create one vantage point to be able to see the entire spectrum of a company.” This means business owners and managers are better able to see broad trends and identify the actual cause of a problem instead of just putting a Band-Aid on a bottleneck. Developed by a team of six employees, ONE uses several underlying softwares, the main one being .NET, to achieve its goal and is customizable based on a client’s needs. The process begins with a business analysis by a certified PaperWise business analyst. “We talk to them about what are the challenges they have from a business perspective, and then we’re able to come back and help define some of the solutions and some of the things that they’re looking for,” Wubbena says. At the end of 2016, 30 companies had signed up for the monthly subscription service during a soft launch phase. In January, PaperWise officially launched the software to its 400-plus existing clients and to the public. And because of PaperWise’s national reach, 417-land’s technology community is helping PaperWise’s team of thinkers improve offices around the country.
“Technology software that saves time and is easy to use is something most of us are seeking. PaperWise’s One solution of automating workflow processes sounds like a dream come true. Time is our most precious commodity; therefore, software that gives us more time is high on my list.”—Rayanna Anderson, entrepreneurship coordinator and community liaison at Missouri State University
behind its new One software includes Software Engineer Jeremy Newman, CEO Dan Langhofer and Director of Business Development Eric Wubbena.
The Trail Blazers I
Brandon Cash, Jason Arend and Myke Bates are preparing to release their voice-activated communication platform to the public later this year.
“When I think of Eagle Speak, their innovative approach to communication and collaboration comes to mind. They have taken a technology that is widely available and looked at it with a fresh, useroriented mindset. Everyone in the area will be watching and cheering for them to succeed.”—Jeff Coiner, director of Information Systems for the City of Springfield
READ ABOUT ALL 11 WINNERS ONLINE AT BIZ417. COM. WHILE YOU’RE THERE, BE SURE TO CHECK OUT TIPS FOR PERFECTING YOUR PITCH FROM EAGLE SPEAK AND SEE JEFF MORRISSEY’S ADVICE FOR BECOMING A BETTER LEADER. BIZ417.COM
PHOTO COURTESY JEFF COINER
Most Innovative Startup Award
f you’ve been following 417-land’s startup community in the past two years, there’s one name you’ve undoubtedly heard: Eagle Speak. The voiceactivated communication and collaboration platform is the brainchild of Jason Arend and Myke Bates. The business partners have known each other for a decade, staying connected despite living in different places. That was the case a few years ago when Arend and Bates first envisioned Eagle Speak. “We kept getting frustrated trying to explain complex and abstract ideas to each other,” Arend says. Even platforms like Skype and Slack failed them. “We kept losing the nuance of whatever we were trying to convey to each other,” he adds. “And we were like, ‘What if we just created a virtual walkie-talkie?’” They thought they could knock out the development for the voice-activated application in a weekend but quickly got caught up with other projects, and the idea fell to the back burner. Fast forward to 2015 when Arend and Bates were both back in Springfield and decided to participate in Startup Weekend Springfield under the impression it was a hacking event. “We weren’t even necessarily planning on pitching anything,” Bates recalls, but because everyone else did, they felt like they needed to as well. Their pitch for a software that acted as a “virtual walkie talkie” was received by a wholly unenthusiastic group; they got one vote for the idea but decided to pursue it anyway and managed to convinced Brandon Cash to join their team. They spent the first half of the weekend creating a prototype instead of the recommended business plan. “A business plan doesn’t make a whole lot of sense if your product is not even going to work,” Bates says. Arend adds: “A lot of innovation is making these small connections that nobody else sees, but if you can’t execute it and scale it, it’s just an idea. It’s not an innovation.” At the final pitch, they pulled off a live demonstration and won first place as well as the audience choice award. Things really started to take off after that—they won the grand prize at the SPIN66 Innovation Summit 2016 and a coveted spot in The eFactory’s first accelerator cohort—but the three have been careful not to release their product before it’s ready. “To succeed the experience has to be nearly flawless the first time you use it,” Arend says. “The slightest bit of friction can completely turn you off, and you just turn away.” In October 2016, they launched a private beta to 25 companies and have incorporated much of that feedback into the platform by adding capabilities such as file sharing and screen sharing. “It really kind of made us realize that Eagle Speak, which started out as just a voice communication tool, really can become a Swiss army knife of solving communication problems,” Bates says. The company plans to launch to the public later this year and stick around 417-land. “I’m very passionate about building and fostering the tech community here,” says Bates, who is also the founder of Springfield Web Devs. “When it comes to Eagle Speak, I have that same passion for wanting to employ people here and also to shine a spotlight to the rest of the tech industry that we can build just as awesome stuff. We have the talent here to build this.”
B I Z 417 P R E S E N T S
MEET MASTERS the
EACH ISSUE WE INTRODUCE YOU TO 417-LANDâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S TOP PROFESSIONALS. There are many experts in 417-land who set the bar high for others in the industry. From masters in financial planning and architecture to interior design, find out what makes those businesses, and those who are behind them, so exceptional.
DECKARD 01. A.INTERIORS
02. BATES 03.
THRIVENT FINANCIAL March/April 2017
meet the masters in
INTERIOR DESIGN is an overall creative solution for a well thought-out space. A. Deckard Interiors blends art and building science to create an experience for offices, hotels, retail stores, financial institutions and individuals’ homes. Andrea Deckard has the highest qualifications a designer could have for both commercial and residential work. She is Leed AP-certified and certified by the NCIDQ. Andrea and her team strive to provide each client with personal, unique, creative solutions for functional spaces and aesthetic reflections of their culture. A. Deckard Interiors’ commercial clients represent a broad range of
Interior design is an important aspect of your company’s branding and should be handled by an experienced professional. —A Deckard Interiors
industries, including Elliott Lodging (including the design of the newest Vibe Hotel on Sunshine), Pyramid Foods Corporate Office, TelComm Credit Union, Davis Properties, and O’Reilly’s Headquarters, to name a few. Andrea Deckard has received several Interior Design Awards for her residential work as well. Interior design is an important aspect of your company’s branding and should be handled by an experienced professional. Andrea Deckard’s ability to understand clients’ needs and push creativity fuels her passion for this work.
A. DECKARD INTERIORS 1501 E. Sunshine St., Ste D Springfield, MO
meet the masters in
BATES: MORE THAN SIMPLY ARCHITECTS. As an extension of your business success team, bates considers themselves resourceful collaborators who connect with their clients to grow each project together. That testimony stands true with the Reliable Lexus project and the requests they brought to bates Project Architects Andrew York and Bryan Stockton. “We were asked to provide a setting for a first-class experience with a focus on customer satisfaction,” York explains. Using an existing building, bates crafted a remodel featuring a new glass and
“We were asked to provide a setting for a first-class experience with a focus on customer satisfaction.” —Andrew York
metal front façade, enlarged showroom, beautiful interior finishes and consumer upgrades including a customer bar, children’s play area and seating lounge with gas fireplace. The service department’s addition features a new climate controlled vehicle service drive, high speed overhead doors and double the number of service bays to give clients a more comfortable experience. Bates, along with wonderful clients and great vision, are “Making Architecture Great Again,” one project at a time.
B AT E S 433 West Walnut Springfield, MO BIZ417.COM
batesarchitects.com March/April 2017
meet the masters in
Rachel D Curley-Financial Associate, FIC; Jeffrey J Kohls-Financial Consultant, CFP, ChFC, CLU; Tony Manasseri-Financial Associate, RICP®, CLTC®, FIC; Paul A Lekar-Financial Consultant, FIC Insurance products issued or offered by Thrivent Financial, the marketing name for Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, Appleton, WI. Not all products are available in all states. Securities and investment advisory services are offered through Thrivent Investment Management Inc., 625 Fourth Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55415, a FINRA and SIPC member and a wholly owned subsidiary of Thrivent. Thrivent Financial representatives are registered representatives of Thrivent Investment Management Inc. They are also licensed insurance agents/producers of Thrivent. Thrivent Financial representatives and employees cannot provide legal, accounting, or tax advice or services. Work with your Thrivent Financial representative, and as appropriate, your attorney and/or tax professional for additional information. 1313607-093015
FOR MORE THAN 100 YEARS, Thrivent Financial has helped their members—over 2.3 million strong—to be wise with money and live generously. As a membership organization of Christians, they succeed when their members and communities thrive. Whether you’re just starting out in your career or are preparing for the retirement you’ve dreamed about, Thrivent Financial helps you identify financial opportunities to help you reach your ultimate destination with confidence. They can help with the things that matter the most: protecting your and your family’s
Thrivent Financial helps you reach your financial destination with confidence. —Thrivent Financial
financial future, planning for long-term care expenses and saving for specific needs like retirement or education. Based on your goals, needs and budgets, they can help develop a spectrum of financial solutions— including retirement income accumulation and distribution—which may include investments, insurance or annuities. They’ll also work with accountants and estate planning attorneys to help create and implement tax minimization and estate preservation strategies so you can live and leave a legacy for the people and causes that matter to you.
THRIVENT FINANCIAL 2200 E. Sunshine Ste. 214 Springfield, MO
Up Banking Alerts For Unusual Or Large Transactions. Ask 4 Set your bank to notify you of any suspicious or large transactions.
9 STEPS BUSINESSES NEED TO TAKE NOW TO BE CERTAIN THEIR FINANCES ARE PROTECTED ONLINE
Credit Cards Instead Of Debit Cards. Most credit cards 5 Use offer better fraud protection—plus, if money is stolen from a
Unfortunately, in the world we live in, cybertheft is most likely the norm going forward and not just a blip on the radar. So how can you stay protected online?
debit card, it has already left your bank account.
Only Shop On Secure Websites. Before you type your credit card into a website, ensure it is secure. Look for “https://” in the address bar of your web browser when you are checking out.
Financial Transactions Over Public WiFi. You can’t 2 Avoid guarantee that free or shared WiFi access is secure. OK to
in the dictionary for your financial accounts.
Directly Answer Or Respond To An Email From Your 7 Never Bank. Criminals have become very adept at appearing that
they are a financial institution when they are not. Never rely on links in emails to access your financial accounts.
connect for browsing the web, but avoid financial transactions on these connections. Your Bank Balances And Statements Regularly. Good 3 Check ol’-fashioned visual checks on your balances and a scan of your transactions are the best practice to be sure that nothing has slipped through the cracks.
Complex Passwords. Use phrase acronyms and 6 Pick keyboard combinations. Never use repeat passwords or words
Available Security Updates On Your Computer, 8 Install SmartPhone and Tablets. Many cybercrimes target known
security holes on your computing devices. Stay up to date to stay secure.
A Secure Network For Financial Transactions. Protect 9 Use your computer with a firewall, antivirus and anti-spyware software.
Call today to learn about our FREE 8 Point Cyber Security Audit 417.877.0395 | northernsummit.com BIZ417.COM
TOOLS TO HELP YOU DOMINATE
“We always wanted to make sure we did things the right way.” –Gino Barbo, owner of Salon Service Group
PHOTOS BY JEREMY MASON MCGRAW, BRAD ZWEERINK
SEE STORY P. 50
Dean the deer watches over Departika’s office while holding the most important items. PAGE 56 BIZ417.COM
50 50 50 51 51
Culture Club Do It Now What If Jumpstart
52 54 55 56
Advice & Whiskey Giving Back How-To Workspace
60 61 61 62
The Big Question Vantage Point Simplify Next Gen
“At the end of the day, I’m going to do the very best for my employees, and I expect my employees to do their very best for our customers. Instead of saying, ‘I don’t know,’ or ‘We can’t do that,’ let’s get up and find a solution.” —Gino Barbo, owner of Salon Service Group
Gino Barbo speaks to Salon Service Group staff at an All-In Sales Meeting.
Finding the Egg One disastrous dinner led this Springfield business owner to adopt a new operations mantra. Some 28 years later, that expression still serves as the company’s cultural backbone. BY: ETTIE BERNEKING
ino Barbo, owner of Salon Service Group, has been in the distribution business since 1987. The Australia native has 27 stores in 11 states and some 280 employees. “I always say that my mom wouldn’t be proud of me because I built a big company,” Barbo says. “She would be proud that I’ve built it the right way.” For Barbo, that means putting his employees first. Thanks to a collaborative work environment that encourages a healthy work-life balance and prioritizes respect within the office and a shared sense of responsibility, the culture of Salon Service Group puts the employees’ happiness on par with the company’s customer service. “We always wanted to make sure we did things the right way,” Barbo says. “The right way is making sure we treat our customers
well, but it’s also making sure we’re treating our employees right and they’re being respected. They can have fun and have the opportunity to have a long-term career and be part of a company that will listen and grow with them and build the company as a team.” To instill that notion of teamwork, Barbo has a saying he likes to use: “Go find the egg!” The expression came about after Barbo went out to eat one night and asked to add an egg to his cheeseburger. The menu had other dishes that have eggs, so Barbo knew it was possible, but the server didn’t even ask the chef to do it. By the time the meal was over, Barbo, who never got that cheeseburger, had a new business mantra: Go find the egg, which means do a little extra to get the job done. It’s an expectation Barbo sets for every employee. “At the end of the day, I’m going to do the very best for my employees, and I expect my employees to do their very best for our customers,” he says. “Instead of saying, ‘I don’t know,’ or ‘We can’t do that,’ let’s get up and find a solution.” Headquartered in Springfield, Salon Service Group has expanded into Iowa, Kanas, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Texas. The growth has tested the company’s culture, but Barbo says the key is patience. “Anytime you grow at that level, there are always challenges,” he says. “The larger you get, the harder it is to keep that culture consistent. Someone new might not understand it right away, but over time, they will feel part of it.” To bring everyone on board, Barbo and his managers keep all employees updated on company goals and numbers, and they gather twice a year for “All-In” meetings. Employees celebrate company victories, hand out awards and go over upcoming projects. Instead of cubicles and closed-off offices, Barbo’s stores are colorful and creative with plenty of open work spaces. And as Salon Service Group celebrates nearly 30 years in business, Barbo credits that company culture of respect and shared responsibility for much of his success.
[DO IT NOW]
SMILE AND MAINTAIN EYE CONTACT.
These are the first steps to appearing credible and convincing. Both techniques build trust for your audience. McAllister also recommends to not forget to add enthusiasm to your demeanor.
REHEARSE YOUR PRESENTATION.
Even if your only listener is your pet, don’t skip this vital step. Evaluate yourself with a home video and watch for the use of meaningless words. Preparation and warming up helps overcome nervousness.
HAVE A STRONG CONCLUSION.
McAllister says your kicker is how they’ll remember you. “By analogy, you’re going to point to something, and every time they see it they are going to think of you,” he says. “When they walk away, they’ve got you.” BIZ417.COM
PHOTO BY TAYLOR NGUYEN
NAIL YOUR PRESENTATION
Colin McAllister of McAllister Coaching LLC says a great presentation in front of potential investors is memorable and simple. Here’s three tips to help you nail it every time.
FROM CORPORATE EMPLOYEE TO CONTRACTOR
CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW? GOOD.
Getting fired isn’t in anyone’s career plan, but it might be the perfect chance to start contracting. One local software developer shares his tips. BY:ADRIENNE DONICA
Communication is key in business. Learn how to stay in touch when your company expands beyond your four walls. BY: CLAIRE PORTER
PHOTO COURTESY ERIC CHAMBERS; ILLUSTRATION COURTESY SHUTTERSTOCK
hen Clyde Howell started working at a big software consulting firm in central Arkansas, he thought he had it made. Howell received a $20,000 raise, became the lead developer on a new software application and was promised a $75,000 bonus. He poached some of the best talent from the few other companies in town, and the team got to work developing prototypes, much to management’s delight. On Thanksgiving Day, he went to pick up his bonus, but instead of leaving with a check, Howell was let go. “Here I was at the holidays; I had a family to feed,” he says. “I was on the black list from any of the companies that would hire me. Plus I didn’t have even a computer degree, so a lot of places wouldn’t hire me because I wasn’t qualified, even though I had more experience than most of their folks.” Howell’s first inclination was to move so he could find another job. He put his resume together and posted it to an online job site. Immediately dozens of companies contacted him with offers for consulting work. “I kept thinking, ‘I need a job,’” Howell says. “So I resisted all these consulting gigs and kept looking for a job as an employee because that’s how I was trained to think.” Finally, Howell decided to accept an offer from a manufacturer in Tennessee who had reached out to him. At $40 an hour, the job was well worth it. His next gig was $45 an hour. “It’s funny; I kept getting treated better as a consultant than I was as an employee,” Howell says. “I would never have had these experiences if I’d kept my previous mindset,
but I had no choice. And so even against my will, I became a consultant.” Accepting that fact cleared the way for Howell to be a successful consultant. “I worked for all these great companies and got to see so many facets of business,” he says. “That’s what was really increasing my value because I knew more about different kinds of business solutions.” Additionally, Howell would spend lunch hours studying the latest technologies. He emphasizes the need for consultants to continually learn no matter how they choose to sharpen their skills. Howell frequently found new consulting jobs thanks to word of mouth, so if you’re breaking out on your own, don’t overlook networking events or other opportunities to make connections with people you trust. In that vein, Howell also says consultants need to learn to serve the business. “That’s what carries you to the next job,” he says. “We’re all connected somehow, so always do a good job.” Howell now works as a full-time employee for DairiConcepts in Springfield. He used his experience as a consultant for the food manufacturer as an extended job interview. “After 20 years of consulting, I got to pick the company I’m going to retire with,” he says. “There were no surprises when I went to work for these people.” If you find yourself in Howell’s position, just remember all’s not lost. “I could not recommend highly enough to people when they get fired to step back and take a breath and look into the options,” Howell says. You never know what you might find.
f things go right in your business, you’re going to grow, perhaps beyond 417-land. How do you keep distant employees on the same page? Eric Chambers, senior consulting manager for Torrent Consulting, shares how the firm keeps Springfield, North Carolina, Michigan, the District of Columbia and Guatemala offices moving together.
Communication is core to Torrent Consulting’s beginnings. “We got the brilliant idea that the first three people [to start the company] should be in separate states,” Chambers says with a laugh. “For us it was important to stay connected. Email is not connection, so we had to find other ways.” This includes a constant video stream to all offices, instant messaging and daily meetings through Google Hangouts or Zoom, all of which help them adhere to the company’s no internal email rule.
Get Customers On Board
“You have to communicate with people where they’re at right now,” Chambers says. That often means starting where customers are comfortable, and then sharing faster, more effective methods.
Keep Your Culture Consistent
“[Something] that gets overlooked as you’re in different locations and growing is you have to say the same thing a lot of times for everyone to get it,” Chambers says. Along with talking regularly about the company’s core values, employees fill out notepad forms when someone exemplifies the values. Forms are shared company-wide so the team can celebrate achievements as one. March/April 2017
[ADVICE & WHISKEY]
Community and Cocktails with Debbie Shantz Hart Debbie Shantz Hart is the owner of Housing Plus LLC and served as the 2016 chairman of the Springfield Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors. She sat down with us to discuss the importance of community involvement over a couple drinks at Red Room at Flame. BY: JEFF HOUGHTON
Debbie Shantz Hart learned a lot about giving back during her time working with John Q. Hammons.
“I was raised by Depression era parents. In that age group, you just did what was the right thing to do. That was the expectation: If you’re going to live here, you’ve got to do your part to make it better.” “I think you have to educate yourself on what the problems are first. We have so many people in Springfield that have good hearts and are good workers and are good at what they do. They need to figure out what’s out there, then they need to ask how to plug in.” “Where I really saw somebody give back was when I was working with John Q. Hammons. He was very good about being forward-thinking and stepping up to the plate to do things that were positive for the community.” “I ask myself the questions: ‘How does this help my community? Do I have the skill set to help them? And realistically, do I have the time to do it?’” “One thing that’s been really positive is the awareness and the spotlight we’ve put on poverty so people do understand the problem.” “Springfield is the most giving community, and I think we take pride in solving our own problems, but you’ve got to tell people what they need to do, and it’s got to be manageable.” “Sometimes we talk things to death as opposed to doing. We need less talking and a little more doing.”
ILLUSTRATION BY HEATHER KANE
“If we don’t do it, it doesn’t get done. I think that’s the whole thing. Everybody’s got to have a sense of responsibility and we can all work toward making it a great place.”
For United Way’s Day of Caring, 26 KPM employees volunteered and helped five organizations.
of Philanthropy KPM learned how to brand its philanthropic efforts, and it’s paying off. KPM CARES has been used as a recruiting tool and recently won an international award. BY: JULIANA GOODWIN
hen KPM Marketing Director Crystal Mapp joined the firm, she found a culture of philanthropy, but efforts were scattered, duplicated and not promoted. So Mapp developed a solution in August 2015: KPM CARES (Community Action Requires Engaged Societies), which serves as an umbrella organizational component for the company’s multiple philanthropy efforts, including three in-house and two independent programs. Casual for a Cause allows employees to promote nonprofit clients’ events and causes as well as raise money for clients through “denim days.” Another program, called Community Cash, gives each employee a monetary allotment they can donate to a cause of their choice. Meanwhile, Membership Matters encourages employees to serve on nonprofit boards and pursue professional development. Employees are also engaged in outside programs through the United Way of the Ozarks and Cents of Pride. United Way’s Day of Caring is KPM’s largest one-day volunteer event. Cents of Pride is a program dedicated to helping students through a system that rewards positive behavior.
In 2016, KPM CARES won the Edge Award for Outstanding Community Service from Leading Edge Alliance, an international association of accounting and consulting firms. The program is now bolstering the firm’s recruitment efforts. “One of the biggest things to [millennials] is volunteerism, outreach,” Mapp says. “A lot of our recruits are coming out of college, and they want to be part of the solution.” The Community Cash program appeals to them, but Mapp says that effort was the most challenging to implement because it required shareholder approval of about $50,000 to be used in the program. KPM employees are also allowed to volunteer while on the clock. The company has a specific code on timecards for these hours. There was no cap on volunteer hours, but that is something they might put in place in the future. Mapp points to three things PHILANTHROPIC PROFILE when it comes to creating sucNUMBER OF cessful philanthropy efforts. First, PHILANTHROPIC PROGRAMS: everyone must be on board. This should start at the top then trickle down the management chain to NUMBER OF employees. Second, leadership EMPLOYEES: should provide multiple options for engagement. “I think the variety of programs available makes it NUMBER OF HOURS easier for someone to find a good VOLUNTEERED: fit for them,” Mapp says. And finally, if you’re going to do it, market it. Mapp developed AMOUNT DONATED: an entire marketing plan, complete with a logo, T-shirts, press releases, blog posts and reminders in monthly meetNUMBER OF ORGANIZATIONS ings and noting it on comREACHED: pany calendars. Now, KPM CARES is something everyone takes pride in.
PHOTOS COURTESY KPM; ILLUSTRATIONS COURTESY SHUTTERSTOCK
Branding a Culture
Get Google to Notice Your Business No matter how great the offered product or service, a business won’t grow if new customers can’t find it online. BY: SONY HOCKLANDER
etween algorithms and acronyms, understanding how to improve your rank on Google’s search engine can be a bit puzzling. We talked with John Vaughan, owner of 417 Local Business Video, and Tim Roark, digital media specialist at ADsmith Marketing & Advertising, about boosting a business’s Google search rankings. KNOW WHY IT MATTERS
People searching for a service are more likely to click the highest listings on Page 1 results. That’s why boosting Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is so important. If Google search results are good, the user is happy. If a user is happy, Google can sell more ads. “That being the end goal, you have to do everything you can to make your site the best answer to the queries of the user,” Roark says. ESTABLISH A GOOD WEBSITE
Roark recommends establishing a website URL. User-friendly engagement can help build relevance and authority, which in turn can help grow your Google ranking. Make sure the website is mobile-friendly— another important ranking factor. Check yours at thinkwithgoogle.com. HELP PEOPLE FIND YOU
The biggest misconception, Vaughan says, is that businesses are easily found. “Most businesses are invisible to the general public, and they just don’t know it,” he says. People seeking a service will search for “what you do, not who you are,” he adds. It’s crucial to determine what key search phrases they’ll use. Roark suggests asking employees and friends what words they would use to find your business. Keyword planning tools can be found online, too. Consider also what makes your service stand out, Vaughan says. Use relevant keywords throughout your website. At the very least, Roark says, make sure they are contained in your website’s title tag, the bold blue link text above the URL in search results. UPDATE YOUR GOOGLE PROFILE
One often overlooked step is to claim and update your Google My Business information, Roark says. It’s free to update your details including address, phone number, hours of operation and more. Add a logo, photos and video for even better results. It’s particularly important for being listed in the “local pack,” the map and three listings at the top of most Page 1 results. Also check across platforms to ensure business information is consistent. Inconsistencies can hurt your Google rank.
HEAD TO BIZ417.COM (SEE WHAT WE DID THERE?) TO READ EVEN MORE WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR GOOGLE SEARCH RANKINGS. BIZ417.COM
DEPARTURE FROM THE NORM There’s nothing traditional about Departika, a digital marketing and design company, and that includes the company office on Commercial Street. The business launched in 2006, originally inside of Randy Bacon’s Monarch Art Factory. In fall 2011, the team bought its current digs on C-Street. Step inside the modern industrial office full of quirky, fun decorations. BY: ADRIENNE DONICA
The Departika team is six people strong and owned by Katie and Corey Canada. All six work at the custom-built table made by Mademan Design LLC, a St. Louis–based company, that sits in the front of the office. The table features outlets on top, providing extra convenience for charging electronic devices. In exchange for the table, Departika designed Mademan’s website.
Dean the deer is a pseudo mascot for Departika. “We wanted a unicorn head bust,” Katie says. When they couldn’t pull off making one on their own, they settled for this deer bust that belonged to Corey’s parents. Over time, Dean has acquired many accessories such as VIP passes to a NASCAR event (one of the company’s clients sponsors a team) and a crown that was left by the Canadas’ 4-year-old daughter, Sophie.
4 6 7
PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
“ W e use these big shelves to break up our office a little bit,” Katie says. The shelves separate the working table from the pingpong table and are filled with several knickknacks. Books, design magazines, client products, novelty toys and about 80 PEZ candy dispensers adorn the ledges. That statue on top of the shelf is on loan from Corey’s sister who brought it back from northern Thailand.
The pingpong table at Departika has been a longstanding item at the office. Although it hasn’t been used much recently, staff members are known to play matches multiple times a day. Former employee Tyler Gross painted the drawings on the wall behind the table as well as on a nearby cabinet. Katie says he had free rein to create whatever he wanted.
Designer/Developer Andy Owler brings his dog Oakley to the office on a regular basis. She is about 5 months old. When it came time to decorate, Katie and Corey chose a modern industrial style to play up the bones of the refurbished building. “We wanted really white walls to contrast that really rough plaster old wall that we liked the look of,” Katie says.
While in their old downtown location, the team made a big bulletin board that fits perfectly on the back of the shelves of the new office. It serves as an inspiration wall for sketches, old Spin magazine pages and more. Last summer, Springfield Creatives came for an office tour, and when they left, Katie noticed a few additions.
This workstation is a multipurpose craft corner. Workers can mock up designs, trim printouts or even paint. “Sometimes that area becomes a little mini photo studio,” Katie says, referring to times when they want to take photos of their clients’ products. Above the desk hangs a painting by Daniel Flodin, who is a friend of the Canadas.
The back room at the office used to be an apartment. Some previous employees even lived there at one point, but now Departika employees use it as a conference room. Before this space was designated, conference calls often required any employee not on the call to be quiet. When an employee moved out of the space, Katie says, “It was the perfect opportunity to repurpose the space as a back office.” March/April 2017
HOPE TO A FORGOTTEN NEIGHBORHOOD
This year s most inspiring con ersations started at Biz 417 s Think Summit. > On January 13, the area’s brightest minds came together to share their biggest ideas at Biz 417 s ﬁrst-ever Think Summit, which consisted of 1 talks, each
or less. With attendees ranging from middle management to vice presidents and entrepreneurs, the event gathered
of 417-land s leaders to start conversations
designed to propel our region forward. The event kicked oﬀ with a Power Breakfast from Simply Delicious, where early birds fueled their minds while networking with other attendees and speakers. Throughout the day, the auditorium at Springﬁeld Art Museum was transformed into a high-energy think tank ﬁlled with inspired guests discussing the ideas of the day. The event centered around the People entric Think Tank, where each of the talks came to life as rooms O ce En ironments transformed the stage for each presentation with innovative and unique o ce settings. An nteractive ounge and iving oom sponsored by Atlas Security and the Missouri State Uni ersity ollege
TURNING YOUR DREAM INTO YOUR VOCATION
of Business oﬀered a place for attendees to step away from the action, recharge with PaperWise and view the talks in a laid-back setting via live simulcast. ollowing each of the presentations, guests had the opportunity to interact with speakers and presenters in the Conversation Hallway sponsored by Essential Strategies and OT
enter for Workforce De elopment. urthermore, this served
as an area for attendees to network and re ect their key takeaways through the Conversation Wall an interactive installation showcasing which conversation topics hit home the most with guests. Guests ended their day at rink Summit, a happy hour where the conversations continued over cold beverages provided by Mother s re ing ompany.
ADVERTISEMENT THE PUBLIC EDUCATION REVOLUTION
Nixa’s Superintendent made the case for removing senior year.
Citing research that suggests spending a dollar on early childhood education has a sevenfold return, Stephen Kleinsmith suggested reallocating resources in schools. “Remove senior year and put your resources in pre-K where you get a higher return rate,” he said.
One mile of solar highways would be enough to power 30 homes.
The Missouri Department of Transportation’s Laurel McKean is leading the pilot project to install Solar Roadways at the historic Route 66 Welcome Center in Conway. McKean showed the audience a miniature solar panel during her talk, but the real panels are about 4 feet wide and weigh 70 pounds.
“Dream big and start small.”—Jeﬀ Houghton, The Mystery Hour
Jeﬀ and Michelle Houghton of The Mystery Hour shared their journey to ﬁnd their passions and how they are making them happen here in 417-land. “Don’t follow your dreams unless you want to walk that thin line between perseverance and crazy person,” Jeﬀ said.
The most popular pickup locations for Uber rides in Springﬁeld.
GOD, INCLUSION AND THE LAW
The Springﬁeld-Branson National Airport, Springﬁeld Expo Center, Gillioz Theatre, bars and restaurants on Walnut Street and student housing at Missouri State University all topped the list of most popular pickup locations for Uber passengers.
Bass Pro Shops surprised the crowd with a bald eagle.
Oh, and Bob Ziehmer, conservation director for Bass Pro, teased us with details about the soon-to-open Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium. There were even more great speakers and moments throughout the day. Visit the Biz 417 Facebook page to watch videos of all the talks and check out event photos.
WATCH WHAT YOU MISSED NOW AT BIZ417.COM/THINK sponsored by
in partnership with
[THE BIG QUESTION]
Create an Evaluation Process that Works Kick your company’s traditional performance review system to the curb with these insights from Willard Public Schools.
ike death and taxes, performance evaluations are inescapable phenomena that often induce dread. Employees get anxious in anticipation, and managers spend hours preparing for meetings that often don’t result in actual change. Even worse are the reviews that require giving negative feedback to an unsuspecting employee. Emotions can run high, once again impeding a constructive conversation. At Willard Public Schools, this is how it used to be. Principals were only required to complete one or two unannounced reviews, one formal observation and one summative observation—as Superintendent Kent Medlin calls it, “the old one hour dog and pony show.” For tenured teachers, this process could even be spread out over three years. But the district knew this model wasn’t working. “There was a recognition by all parties that the old system was very limited, and we could do better,” Medlin says. So in 2000, Medlin and his team set out to create a new standard with input from employees at all levels. What they developed is a growth-focused model that aims to remove unnecessary subjectivity by incorporating feedback from more than just an employee’s direct supervisor.
“The idea is to block any manipulation and personality,” says Assistant Superintendent Stewart Pratt. To do that, the plan architectures determined which parties needed to weigh in for each position in the district. For example, teachers’ evaluations include input from students and parents depending on the grade level, and staff members can share their insights about their building principal.
“IT DOESN’T MATTER IF YOU’RE SECOND YEAR OR 25TH YEAR, EVERYBODY HAS THE ABILITY TO GROW.” —Kent Medlin, superintendent of Willard Public Schools “If you’re really trying to grow people, it’s about effective feedback, and it’s about timeliness,” Pratt says. Now, principals make seven recorded walkthroughs, provide feedback and have an annual review. Medlin admits seven times a year isn’t enough and encourages staff to give constant feedback. “Truly, people are being evaluated all the time,” he says.
The continual feedback also reduces anxiety surrounding performance evaluations. “There shouldn’t be anybody nervous about it,” Pratt says. “It should be a great conversation about growth. The piece that’s going to come out of that is ‘where do we go from here?’” If you do have to give some tough feedback, “Be bluntly honest,” Medlin says. “Nobody likes the hard parts, but you have to be willing to do it.” Another advantage to Willard’s model is its relevance to teachers of all expertise levels. After all, new team members don’t need the same type of coaching as veterans. “Growth allows us to take the person where they’re at and go forward from there,” Medlin says. “And it doesn’t matter if you’re second year or 25th year, everybody has the ability to grow.” Employees complete an annual development plan with their supervisor, and in 2016, Willard instituted a new policy allowing teachers to be paid for “growth hours,” or time spent on professional development outside the classroom. If your current method is working just fine, you might be thinking, “Why change?” On that subject, Medlin defers to author Jim Collins: “Jim Collins says that good is the enemy of great…Well then, we have to be willing to fight the enemy.” BIZ417.COM
ILLUSTRATION COURTESY SHUTTERSTOCK; PHOTO COURTESY KENT MEDLIN
BY: ADRIENNE DONICA
FOCUSED ON THE DETAILS Esterly, Schneider & Associates Inc., AIA has a long-standing presence in 417-land that has produced 70 years of architectural excellence by building relationships with its clients. BY: MIKE CULLINAN
PHOTOS BY DEBBIE FRANKE, COURTESY ESTERLY, SCHNEIDER & ASSOCIATES, INC. AIA, OZARKS TECHNICAL COMMUNITY COLLEGE
hen Craig Schneider became the managing partner of Esterly, Schneider & Associates Inc. AIA in 1985, the Springfield-based architectural firm founded by A.C. Esterly already had almost four decades of experience. Founded in 1947, the firm hits a notable milestone this year with 70 years in business. While the company’s values have remain consistent, the strategy of running an architecture firm has changed in the past seven decades. As one of the longest continuously operating architectural firms in 417-land, the company has long-standing relationships with many of its clients, something Schneider takes pride in. “We believe strongly in focusing on our history and who and what have contributed to where we are today,” he says. Schneider knows the importance of embracing the local community—a practice he recommends for any business that might find itself looking to attract work outside of its home base. “If you want to expand outward from our local area, it is important to
build a firm foundation here first,” Schneider says. “Those local relationships have allowed us to expand our business nationwide. Many of our new clients come from referrals of our existing clients.” The firm is licensed in 46 states with work in nearly all of them. In fact, about 70 percent of projects are outside of Missouri now. The key element for such grow, Schneider says, is to have people pick up on your company’s name. To that end, the firm hired its first marketing director about five years ago and began focusing on engaging clients on social media. The firm also has a renewed focus on strategic planning as a way to scout new markets. Although the four partners spearhead this effort, the entire staff is encouraged to contribute ideas. Speaking of the staff, Schneider has been very intentional about who he hires and brings up to the management level. “I don’t need another me,” he says. “I need some new ideas to keep things moving forward.” This is especially important because the architecture industry, like many others, is faced with similar projects and problems year after year. For companies that have been around for decades like Esterly, Schneider & Associates, smooth leadership transitions are also important. “Since 2014, we’ve brought in three new partners,” Schneider says. He urges other business owners to not wait too long when picking successors. “You have to do it early in a person’s career,” he says, adding that allowing enough training time is crucial to the process. So what’s next for the firm? “Hopefully, it’s another 70 years after this at least.”
TO-DOS AND DON’TS Be more productive: check. Here’s how to make better, more impactful to-do lists. BY: REN BISHOP
Make a list and check it twice. Kari Stewart, owner of Highpoint People Company, shares her tips on how to make more effective lists for every part of your life. START MAKING LISTS. Like any good habit, the first step is to start. But for smarter list making, define a list’s purpose before writing its first item. “If you have a problem, lists will help solve it,” Stewart says. “Not having a list often makes people less productive because they’re less efficient.” SET YOUR PRIORITIES. Once you’ve made a list with a specific purpose, setting your priorities can help drive task completion, Stewart says. “Work through your values and set priorities based off of what’s most important to you,” she says. “If that means categorizing or color coding, great. If that means changing the order of the list, sure. But define the must-dos.” MODIFY YOUR LIST. Once you’ve added to a list or failed to complete a longer list, modify your approach as you go. “If digital isn’t working for you, try a pad of paper,” Stewart says. “If you keep forgetting your list, bring it with you on your phone. Or if it’s too long and it’s overwhelming, maybe try making a new list every day. Lists are no good if they don’t work within the way you [work].”
As owner of Highpoint People Company, Kari Stewart is no stranger to making lists—and making her lists work for her. Phelps County Regional Medical Center – Waynesville Clinic BIZ417.COM
Insuring the Future
Brothers Rick Kyle (left) and Kent Kyle (right) are preparing for Kent’s son, Adam (center), to start working his way up in the family company.
Kyle Insurance Services Inc. has aided clients for decades, but the Springfield agency is adding a third generation to further its reach.
ost people don’t have their career path figured out when they’re 18 years old, but Kent Kyle says spending time selling life insurance with his father, Jack, set him on a road he still finds himself on four decades later. He and Rick, his older brother, both knew they wanted to work in the insurance industry. “It was a good way to not pay attention in college, knowing you were going to go into the insurance business,” Kent says with a laugh. After several years working for Franklin Life Insurance Company, Jack and his sons eventually found themselves operating independently from the firm. That quickly led to the formation of Kyle Insurance Services Inc., which has served 417-land since 1985.
The family business has continued with the sons at the helm since Jack died in 2008. Rick, who serves as President, and Kyle, as Vice President, maintain their own list of clients, which differs from typical ownership structures. “It’s not that anything coming in the door is half mine, half my brother’s,” Rick says. “Now we share and help each other from time to time,” adding they divvy up expenses. “I think that’s one of the reasons why we’ve gotten along so well for 40 years,” he says. Kyle Insurance is now a third-generation agency with the part-time involvement of Kent’s son, Adam. Currently a senior at Missouri State University, Adam plans to come on as full-time treasurer after graduation in May. BIZ417.COM
PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
BY: MIKE CULLINAN
You have to hold your own. You have to earn the right to be here.” —Kent Kyle, Vice President
Just as it was between Kent and his brother, communication between Kent and his son is key to ensuring the family dynamic isn’t disrupted in the office. To that end, Kent says he spoke with Adam prior to him coming on board to make it clear that he wasn’t his son’s boss. “I think that’s just a recipe for disaster,” Kent says. “I want to be his instructor and be his counselor, and I want to help him out where I can. But eventually, I want him to be able to pay his share of the office expenses and pull his own weight.” For those looking to take charge of or even just work for their family business, Kent says you have to be sure it’s a field you want to be in. Don’t do it just because it’s there or because you’re expected to do so. “That can be disastrous if it’s not a fit to your personality or your goals and dreams for life,” he says. Adam says having a strong relationship, whether it’s with your father or some other family member, is essential to success in the workplace. “If Dad and I didn’t have a good relationship, then this just wouldn’t work out,” Adam says Still, Kent says family members shouldn’t expect to just start working for a family business and survive because of their connection to the owners. “You have to hold your own,” he says. “You have to earn the right to be here.” The Kyles say there is plenty to keep them busy with the Affordable Care Act and high demand from aging baby boomers, many of whom are now enrolling in Medicare. “My business has probably more future potential than it ever has, and I’ve been doing this for 40 years,” Kent says. Government regulations are a challenge for insurance agencies now and tomorrow, Kent says, but he feels confident about whatever the future brings. “The insurance agency has been really good at adapting,” he says. “We can roll with the punches.”
Jack Kyle, founder of Kyle Insurance.
Jack Kyle, left, founder of Kyle Insurance, appeared on the cover of a 1954 insurance magazine.
“Be engaged in the conversation on things that matter.” —Michael Maslansky, CEO of maslansky + partners
SEE PAGE 82 EVERYWHERE YOU NEED TO BE
PHOTO BY BRAD ZWEERINK
Governor Eric Greitens joins Rosie members at The eFactory to discuss the importance of women-owned businesses.
66 Network 68 Learn
72 1 Million Cups Christmas Party 74 Eric Greitens Springfield Stop 76 Faces of 417-Land
78 Branson Chamber Lunch 84 Lunch & Learn VR 80 Accelerator Open House 86 MOmentum 82 SBDC Annual Meeting 88 Downtime March/April 2017
1 MILLION CUPS
Local entrepreneurs SPONSORED EVENT are energizing the community. Keep your finger on the pulse of their sprouting businesses and innovative ideas at this weekly presentation program. When: 8:30–10 a.m., every Wednesday Where: Springfield Art Museum, 1111 E. Brookside Drive, Springfield Cost: Free More Information: 1mcsgf.com THE IN PARTY
Mix and mingle in Springfield’s living room at this weekly event featuring live music and half-price happy hour specials. When: 5–7 p.m., every Wednesday Where: Hotel Vandivort, 305 E. Walnut St., Springfield Cost: Free More Information: 417-832-1515 SPONSORED EVENT
7:30–8:30 a.m., Thursday, March 2; Thursday, April 6
GOOD MORNING, SPRINGFIELD!
Knock out some networking before the day really begins at the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce’s monthly breakfast event. Hear the latest news from the city, county and chamber. $20 for members, $25 for nonmembers; location varies; for more info, call 417-862-5567 or visit springfieldchamber.com 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Thursday, March 2; Thursday, April 6
7–8 a.m., Friday, March 3 Friday, April 7
FIRST FRIDAY COFFEE
The Ozark Chamber of Commerce hosts a monthly meetand-greet for its members. The event is come and go, so feel free to drop in for a few minutes or stay for the whole hour. Free for chamber members, Ozark residents and Ozark businesses; location varies; for more information, call 417-581-6139 or visit ozarkchamber.com 5–7 p.m., Thursday, March 9 Thursday, April 13
BUSINESS AFTER HOURS
Mix, mingle and have fun with Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce members at this monthly happy hour. $5 for members, $15 for nonmembers; location varies; for more information, call 417-862-5567 or visit springfieldchamber.com
SPRINGFIELD CREATIVES HAPPY HOUR
Each month, Springfield Creatives members head to Scotch & Soda for networking and happy hour specials to connect and share strategies and insider tips. When: 5:30–9 p.m., Thursday, March 9 and Thursday, April 13 Where: Scotch & Soda, 310 South Ave., Springfield Cost: Free More Information: springfieldcreatives.com 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Tuesday, March 14; Tuesday, April 11
WORKING OZARK WOMEN
GENERAL MEMBERSHIP LUNCHEON
These monthly lunches by the Ozark Chamber of Commerce bring women in business together to learn from and connect with each other over informative presentations. $12 in advance, $17 at the door; Ozark Community Center, 1530 W. Jackson St., Ozark; call 417-581-6139 or visit ozarkchamber.com for more information
Join the Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce for lunch, networking and an update on the Chamber’s activities, progress and events. Don’t forget your business cards! $12 for members in advance, $15 two days before, $20 for non-members; The Bridge, 308 W. Mt. Vernon St., Nixa; call 417-725-1545 or visit business.nixachamber.com/events for more information BIZ417.COM
11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Wednesday, March 15
AITP LUNCH MEETING
Step away from your computers for networking and updates from the Association of IT Professionals of the Ozarks. The March meeting also includes a panel discussion about professional development. Free to attend, $12 lunch for members, $18 lunch for guests; Hilton Garden Inn, 4155 S. Nature Center Way, Springfield; visit aitpspringfield.org for more information 7:30–8:30 a.m., Thursday, March 16
GOOD MORNING BRANSON
Join the Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce for Good Morning Branson, now a quarterly event. Dan Lennon, director of the Missouri Division of Tourism, presents about marketing in 2017. $10 for members, $15 for future members; Fritz’s Adventure, 1425 Highway 76, Branson; call 417-3344084 or visit bransonchamber.com for more information 4–5 p.m., Thursday, March 16 Thursday, April 20
SIX DEGREES OF NETWORKING
Mix and mingle at this dynamic, high-energy event hosted by the Nixa Chamber of Commerce, and hear from featured speakers and career coaches or participate in a networking activity each month. This event is open to the public. Free; Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce, 106 W. Sherman Way, Suite 6, Nixa; for more information, call 417-725-1525 or visit business. nixachamber.com/events 9 a.m.–3 p.m., Saturday, March 18
NIXPO HERE IT IS BUSINESS AND COMMUNITY EXPO
Get your business noticed at this Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce event by interacting with clients and networking with other businesspeople. BIZ417.COM
Free; Nixa High School, 514 S. Nicholas Road, Nixa; call 417-7251545 or visit business.nixachamber. com/events for more information 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Tuesday, March 21; Tuesday, April 18
WORKING WOMEN IN NIXA LUNCHEON
Business advice often means most from someone who has been in your shoes. Enjoy lunch while meeting other businesswomen at this monthly event by the Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce. $12 for members in advance, $15 two days before, $20 for non-members; Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce, 106 W. Sherman Way, Suite 6, Nixa; call 417-725-1545 or visit business.nixachamber.com/events for more information 7:30–9 a.m., Friday, March 24 Friday, April 28
CHAMBER COFFEE CONNEXION
Reenergize your morning with a jolt of coffee and valuable networking with Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce members at this monthly meetup. Chamber membership is required to attend. Free for members; for location details and other info, call 417-725-1525 or visit business.nixachamber.com/ events details 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Tuesday, March 28; Tuesday, April 25
XMIN (EXCEPTIONAL BUSINESSMEN IN NIXA)
This Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce event is catered toward businessmen looking to build long-term relationships with business owners in a variety of industries and fields. Join the XMIN for lunch, networking and a roundtable discussion. $12 for members in advance, $15 two days before, $20 for non-members; Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce, 106 W. Sherman Way, Suite 6, Nixa; call 417-725-1545 or visit business.nixachamber.com/events for more information March/April 2017
E T A R O CORP
S T N E V E
4:30–6 p.m., Tuesday, March 28
Join The Network for an open house social with members and guests. Bowl a few frames before visiting the cash bar and getting to know other businesspeople in the community. Free; Andy B’s Entertainment Center, 1227 E. Battlefield Road, Springfield; for more information, call 417-862-5567 11 a.m.–1 p.m., Wednesday, March 29
NIXA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE OPEN HOUSE
Tour the new location of the Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce at this open house and ribbon cutting. Free and open to the public; Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce, 106 W. Sherman Way, Suite 6, Nixa; for more info, call 417-725-1545 or visit business.nixachamber.com/events 1 p.m., Saturday, April 1
FOUR MINUTE FIT BOOK SIGNING/TALK
Hear from fitness guru Siphiwe Baleka as he shares his fitness philosophy and signs copies of his new book, Four Minute Fit. Free and open to the public; Barnes & Noble, 3055 S. Glenstone Ave., Springfield; call 417-885-0026 for more information 6–7:30 p.m., Thursday, April 6
E M T E E M
E H T T A
1127 E. Battleﬁeld Rd., Springﬁeld
Andy B’s 417.883.1234 andybspringﬁeld.com
Restaurant/Bar Luxury Bowling
Laser Tag Elite Arcade
Meeting Space High Energy Music
Join the Ozarks Small Business Incubator and local manufacturers for an evening of networking. Dinner provided. Free; Ozarks Small Business Incubator, 408 Washington Ave., West Plains; for more information, call 417-256-9723 or visit ozsbi.com 9 a.m.–3 p.m., Saturday, April 8
SHOWCASE OZARK EXPO 2017
This showcase is the perfect place to meet new community members and potential clients. Network with over 100 local vendors and find out how your
business can help Ozark thrive. Free and open to the public, booths starting at $200; Ozark Community Center, 1530 W. Jackson St., Ozark; call 417-581-6139 or visit business.ozarkchamber.com for more information 6–8 p.m., Thursday, April 20
Calling all young professionals. Join the Branson Area Chamber of Commerce’s newest networking and professional development organization for an evening of socializing. $10; SKY Deck at Parakeet Pete’s, 100 Branson Landing Boulevard, Branson; for more information, call 417-334-4084 or visit bransonchamber.com 7:30–9 a.m., Thursday, April 27
This members-only event is speed networking on steroids. Meet business owners from around 417-land as members from area chambers mingle. $5; for location details and other information, call 417-862-5567 or visit springfieldchamber.com 11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m., Friday, April 28
BRANSON BUSINESS CONNECTION LUNCHEON
Get some face time with other businesspeople in Branson at this networking luncheon. Practice your elevator speech—you’ll have the opportunity to introduce your business to the room. $15 for members, $20 for future members; call 417-334-4084 or visit bransonchamber.com for location details and other info LEARN Ongoing
MANAGEMENT DEVELOPMENT INSTITUTE TRAINING PROGRAMS
Get a leg up in business with an array of certificate and training programs offered by the Missouri State Management Development Institute. BIZ417.COM
Prices vary by class; The eFactory, 405 N. Jefferson Ave., Springfield; for course listings, prices, schedules and more information, visit mdi. missouristate.edu Ongoing
SMALL BUSINESS & TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT CENTER COURSES
Take advantage of the SBTDC’s small business training courses and seminars. Class times and prices vary, and topics include starting a business in Missouri and honing your marketing skills. Prices vary by class; The eFactory, 405 N. Jefferson Ave., Springfield; for course listings, prices, schedules and more information, go online to sbtdc. missouristate.edu Ongoing
LEGAL OFFICE HOURS
Every other Wednesday, drop into The eFactory for a free legal consultation with Amanda Tummons of Husch Blackwell. Free with registration; The eFactory, 405 N. Jefferson Ave., Springfield; for more information, call 417-837-2600 or visit efactory.missouristate.edu Ongoing
MONEY SMART SERIES
Don’t let your great idea go to waste just because you don’t have formal business training. Learn the basics of small business finances at this 10-week program held Monday and Tuesday evenings starting March 27. The series is sponsored by the Small Business & Technology Development Center. $10 each or $79 for the series; The eFactory, 405 N. Jefferson Ave., Springfield; for more information, visit sbtdc.missouristate.edu or call 417-837-2615 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Tuesday, March 7; Tuesday, April 4
THE ASSOCIATION FOR WOMEN IN COMMUNICATIONS LUNCHEON
The Association for Women BIZ417.COM
in Communications features a monthly speaker focusing on trends, tips and ideas to increase the knowledge of the attendees to help further their careers. $15 for members, $14 for AWC student members, $25 for returning guests, free for first-time guests; 425 Downtown, 425 W. Walnut St., Springfield; visit awcspringfieldmo. org for more info 4–5 p.m., Thursday, March 9
SPEAKER SERIES: STEERING YOUR BRAND & CREATING OPPORTUNITY
Join The eFactory for its monthly speaker series featuring local businesspeople and tips on how to improve your company. In March, hear from photographers Chase Heilman and George Ferris of Starboard & Port about how they started their business on the East Coast before setting up shop in Springfield. Free for members and partners, $10 general admission; The eFactory, 405 N. Jefferson Ave., Springfield; for more information, call 417-837-2600 or visit efactory.missouristate.edu 6–9 p.m., Wednesday, March 8 & Thursday, March 9; Wednesday, April 5 & Thursday, April 6
THE SUCCESSFUL BUSINESS: PLANNING & FUNDING
Kick-start your business with this two-day course hosted by the Small Business & Technology Development Center. You will learn how to create a sustainable business plan and secure funding. $139; The eFactory, 405 N. Jefferson Ave., Springfield; for more information, call 417-837-2615 or visit sbtdc.missouristate.edu 1–5 p.m., Monday, March 13
The fastest way to tank is by staying stagnant, but change isn’t always easy. Learn how to embrace change and get your employees on board so your team can tackle the challenges ahead.
(continued p. 70) March/April 2017
(continued from p. 69) $139; for location details and more information, visit workforce.otc.edu 10:30–11:30 a.m., Wednesday, March 15
AITP TECHNICAL MANAGERS GROUP
Get input and advice from other managers, owners and executives facing business decisions and operations in the technology field at this monthly meetup. March’s topic is “How do I wear multiple hats and do it well?” Free to members and guests with registration; Hilton Garden Inn, 4155 S. Nature Center Way, Springfield; for more information, visit aitpspringfield.org
SPRINGFIELD CREATIVES MONTHLY MEETING
Get in touch with other creative types at the monthly meetings of Springfield Creatives, which incorporate useful activities and presentations from notable community members. When: 6 p.m., Wednesday, March 15 and Wednesday, April 19 Where: Location varies Cost: Free for members More Information: Visit springfieldcreatives.com 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Thursday, March 16
WHEN HUMANS BECOME RESOURCES
Learn how to leverage your position as an HR professional at this Springfield Area Human Resources Association lunch meeting. Phil Brandt, CEO of AAIM Employers’ Association, shares how you can contribute to your company from the bottom up as well as top down. $20 for SAHRA members, $30 for guests; Hilton Garden Inn, 4155 S. Nature Center Way, Springfield; for more info, call sahramo.org Noon–1 p.m., Thursday, March 16 Thursday, April 20
LUNCH & LEARN
Each month, the Ozarks Small
Business Incubator hosts an informative lunch meeting tackling a range of business issues. In March, learn the first steps of starting any business. In April, learn about the Commercial Loan Process. Lunch provided. Free; Ozarks Small Business Incubator, 408 Washington Ave., West Plains; for more info, call 417256-9724 or visit ozsbi.com 4–5:30 p.m., Thursday, March 16 Thursday, April 20
MATA IDEA MASHUP
The Mid-America Technology Alliance presents a monthly happy hour centered around panel discussions on technology with an eye toward retaining and attracting a strong tech workforce. Beverages and food provided. Prices vary; The eFactory, 405 N. Jefferson Ave., Springfield; call Sherry Coker at 417-343-3017 for more information 7:30–9:30 a.m., Friday, March 17 Friday, April 21
People Centric Consulting Group gathers leaders each month for a breakdown of ways to manage and lead effectively. Join speaker Don Harkey and local leaders for dynamic presentations, engaging discussions and breakfast. In March, learn how to make your company’s meetings rock. $89 per session or $890 for the year; 425 Downtown, 425 W. Walnut St., Springfield; for April’s topic and more information, call 417-887-6760 or visit 417tix.com 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Tuesday, March 21; Thursday, April 27
Get to know 417-land CEOs with this series from The Network. In March, Mary Kellogg, co-founder of Titanic Museum Attractions, shares her leadership triumphs and struggles. In April, GigSalad CEO and Co-founder Mark Steiner speaks on building and marketing a small business. Free; Springfield Area Chamber BIZ417.COM
of Commerce, 202 S. John Q. Hammons Parkway, Springfield; call 417-862-5567 for more info 1:30–3:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 21
Getting a good loan means having good credit. Find out how to review your credit, recoup a less than favorable score and land that loan you need at this event hosted by the Ozarks Small Business Incubator. $35; Ozarks Small Business Incubator, 408 Washington Ave., West Plains; for more info, call 417256-9724 or visit ozsbi.com 10–10:45 a.m., Thursday, March 23; Thursday, April 28
MEMBER BRIEFING AND ORIENTATION
Learn the ins and outs of the Nixa Chamber of Commerce, and hear about how to get the most out of your membership. Free with reservation; Nixa Area Chamber of Commerce, 106 W. Sherman Way, Suite 6, Nixa; for more info, call 417-725-1545 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Thursday, March 23
GOOD AFTERNOON OZARK!
Stay up-to-date with the Ozark Chamber of Commerce at this monthly luncheon. $12 in advance, $17 at the door; Ozark Community Center, 1530 W. Jackson St., Ozark; for more info, call 417-581-6139 or visit ozarkchamber.com 1–5 p.m., Monday, March 27
need to know how to best work with the millennial generation. Learn communication, engagement and recruitment tactics in this course. $239; for location details and more information, visit workforce.otc.edu 11:45 a.m.–1 p.m., Wednesday, April 12
60 MINUTES TO SUCCESS
Stay successful at this Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce event designed to help you tackle the biggest challenges facing business owners today. Get tips for developing a 360 degree business marketing plan. $15 for members, $25 for nonmembers; Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce, 202 S. John Q. Hammons Parkway, Springfield; call 417-862-5567 or visit springfieldchamber.com B-SCHOOL BREAKFAST SERIES: WOMEN WHO MEAN BUSINESS SPONSORED EVENT
Breakfast is served with a side of expertise from 417-land boss ladies. Learn how the 2017 Women Who Mean Business grew their careers, accomplished feats and more. When: 7:30–9 a.m., Thursday, April 13 Where: Andy B’s Entertainment Center, 1127 E. Battlefield, Springfield Cost: $15 in March, $20 in April More Information: Get tickets at biz417.com/bschool
NETWORKING FOR ENHANCED COLLABORATION
8 a.m.–noon, Thursday, April 13
Take your networking game to the next level by learning strategies to help you capitalize on your existing relationships. $139; for location details and more information, visit workforce.otc.edu
Research shows diversity strengthens teams and organizations. This course provides you with the know how to create an inclusive environment where values and ideas are respected and used. $239; for location details and more information, visit workforce.otc.edu FOR MORE EVENTS, CHECK OUT THE FULL CALENDAR AT BIZ417.COM.
1–5 p.m., Tuesday, April 11
MILLENNIALS AT WORK
No one likes the “M” word, but employers and managers still BIZ417.COM
MAKING DIVERSITY WORK FOR YOU
1 Million Cups Christmas Party
Majed Alsulaiman and Devin Dillon
Lisa Baird and Matt Price
Drake Hughes and Vincent Nolden.
Naughty or nice, guests walked away with 1 Million Cupsâ&#x20AC;&#x201C; themed stocking stuffers.
Jeremy Lux and Craig Jamison
Brian Kincaid speaks at the 1 Million Cups holiday party.
Jordan Schanda and Paige Viehmann PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
Aaron Haygood with Spark Events spins some holiday tunes.
Event Info: DATE: December 14, 2016 | LOCATION: Springfield Art Museum | WEBSITE: 1mcsgf.com
Governor-Elect Eric Greitens Springfield Heart of Missouri Stop
Sarah Kerner and Bridget Dierks
Jonathan Keeth, Rebecca Anderson and Janet Anderson
Days before his inauguration as governor, Eric Greitens spoke to a crowded room of Rosie members.
“I’m so impressed by what’s going on here. Let’s just say, go Rosie!” —Eric Greitens, Missouri Governor
Shallina Goodnight and Teresa Coyan
Missouri Governor Eric Greitens
Kendall Seal speaks to the crowd of entrepreneurs and businesspeople.
Matt Kerner and Brad Davidson
Event Info: DATE: January 6, 2017 | LOCATION: The eFactory | SPEAKERS: Eric Greitens, Kendall Seal, Stephanie Stenger Montgomery, Sally Hargis, Denise Fredrick, Amy Blansit
PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
Rosie presents various speakers to encourage networking, professional development and leadership in its members.
417 Magazine’s Faces of 417-Land Party
Mike Harkins and Dany Scanio
Guests at the Faces of 417-Land party could mix and mingle thanks to CB Social House’s wide open dining space.
Taliah Webb, Becca Sitz and Adrianne Stern
Dillon Rudder mixes up a drink at CB Social House’s wellstocked bar.
Cody Watson, Jared Short and Ryan Mulcahy
Mother’s Brewing Company provided ice-cold sudsy beers.
Mary Mitchell and Lori Guy PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
Caleb Wehman and Jessica Merckling
Event Info: DATE: January 18, 2017 | LOCATION: CB Social House | WEBSITE: 417mag.com/Faces-of-417-land
Branson Chamber Annual Membership Luncheon
William Mahoney speaks during the Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Membership Luncheon
William Mahoney receives a plaque from Jeff Seifried and Mike Pitman that recognizes his service as the 2016 Chairman of the Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce.
Jeff Seifried, president and CEO of the Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce, addresses the crowd.
Judy and Bob Williams
Chairman of the Branson/Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce for 2017 Mike Pitman speaks to the audience of business owners and leaders.
Curtis Ramsey, Ashley Harkness and Adrianne Lucas
Leo Henning, Brent Sager, Jeremy Rabe and Tom Trtan
Event Info: DATE: January 27, 2017 | LOCATION: Chateau on the Lake Resort and Convention Center | SPEAKERS: William Mahoney, Mike Pitman, Jeff Seifried | WEBSITE: bransonchamber.com
PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
Branson’s business community showed up in full force for the Branson Chamber’s annual luncheon.
IS YOUR PLAN WORKING? e are already well into 2017 and nearing the end of ﬁrst quarter. What goals did you set for 2017? Is this the year that you planned to take your business to a new level? Is this the year you planned to get your team engaged, aligned and on board? Maybe you took some time at the beginning of the year to think about what you wanted 2017 to look like. Maybe you even made an excellent strategic plan. So, is your plan working? Here is the story we see every day: A group of leaders assemble to determine the direction of the company for the upcoming year. They talk about mission and vision. They talk about strengths and weaknesses. They create key objectives to accomplish in the coming year. When the plan is completed, the team all gives each other high ﬁves and then they go back to work.
The strategic plan failed to plan for strategic execution. People Centric can not only work with your team to establish clear direction for the coming year, but we can also help you engage your team in the ongoing tracking and execution of the plan. Not only does this drive progress, but it also earns you engaged employees who are aligned and focused. Planning is important, but execution is what drives results. It’s time to plan to work on your business, not just in your business.
Contact People Centric today to meet with one of our engagement experts. THEY WILL INTERVIEW YOUR LEADERSHIP AND WORK WITH YOU TO DETERMINE THE NEXT BEST STEPS THAT YOUR ORGANIZATION CAN TAKE TO SUCCESSFULLY EXECUTE IN 2017. Learn more at PeopleCCG.com.
Accelerator Cohort #2 Open House
Allen Kunkel and Steve Crowder
Hector Cruz introduces his startup, Let’s Do Lunch.
Rachel Anderson, Erica Smith and Joshua Wemple
“The goal behind this is really to help jump-start these companies both for funding but then also with that mentorship and those connections and that focus that they might not otherwise have an opportunity to have.” —Rachel Anderson, entrepreneurial specialist at The eFactory
Chad Boschert introduces his startup, Apt Crowd, during the open house.
Chad Boschert, Kelli Fleck and Gabriel Fleck
Camille Baker presents her company, Pull Up A Seat. PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
Allen Kunkel and Jason Arend
Event Info: DATE: February 6, 2017 | LOCATION: The eFactory | SPEAKERS: Rachel Anderson, Chad Boschert, Hector Cruz, Camille Baker, Stuart Emerson and Amy Blansit | WEBSITE: efactory.missouristate.edu
2017 SBDC Annual Meeting
Jaimie Trussell, Rob Fulp, Tom Babik and Brian Fogle
Tabatha Morrow, Shirley LaBella and Jennifer Biri
Brandon Bowenschulte and Ed Brady
“If we’re going to attract talent to the area, if we’re going to attract investment to the area, if we’re going to stay strong as a community, it’s got to be a community where trust is at the center.” —Michael Maslansky, CEO of maslansky + partners Michael Maslansky gave the keynote address.
Bill Smillie, Ozark Mayor Rick Gardner and Ozark Alderman Ted Smith
Joe Reynolds mapped out the promising year ahead.
PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
Movers and shakers in the small business community gathered to get motivated for the year ahead.
Event Info: DATE: February 8, 2017 | LOCATION: University Plaza Hotel & Convention Center | SPEAKERS: Michael Maslansky, Joe Reynolds, Ryan Mooney | WEBSITE: springfieldchamber.com
Lunch & Learn: Futures Made of Virtual Reality
Alex Greiwe uses a virtual reality system.
Meghan Serota uses a virtual reality system in Charlie Rosenbury’s SELF Interactive office at The eFactory.
Kirk Simpson with Bates Architects talks about his company’s virtual reality work with Richard Russell.
Matt Kerner and Rachael Snow
Adam DeVizia, Sean Walker and Darren Furr
Charlie Rosenbury with SELF Interactive discussed the uses of virtual reality in his presentation.
Josh Willis, Eric Ham and Mike Compton PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
Kurt Dillow with Occulum Works talks about his company’s virtual reality work with Deb Wilson.
Event Info: DATE: February 9, 2017 | LOCATION: The eFactory | SPEAKERS: Charlie Rosenbury | WEBSITE: efactory.missouristate.edu
MANAGEMENT in the palm of your hand. Real Time Visibility & Data Access
Accrual & Absence Management
Payroll Human Resources Affordable Care Act
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MOmentum 2017: State of the Workforce Luncheon
Beth Johns and Candi Jones
High school student Clair Croley speaks about her experience in the GO CAPS program.
Mike Dawson and Charles Taylor
“It takes the entire community willing to invest and develop a workforce.” —Mary Ann Rojas, City of Springfield’s
director of Workforce Development
Mike Peters makes opening remarks at 2017 MOmentum.
Mary Ann Rojas, director of Workforce Development for the City of Springfield, discusses the findings of the 2017 State of the Workforce Survey.
Alice Wood, Brad Stulce, Amie Davis and Lindsay Jackson
Sarah Gremminger, Marah Schreiber and Marybeth Kleinsasser
PHOTOS BY BRAD ZWEERINK
John Jungmann shares insights about how the education sectors and business community must work together to prepare future workers.
Event Info: DATE: February 15, 2017 | LOCATION: Oasis Hotel and Convention Center | SPEAKERS: Mary Ann Rojas, John Jungmann, Mike Peters | WEBSITE: springfieldmo.gov/MOmentum
PHOTO COURTESY JOHN PALAZZOLO
Since he was a kid, John Palazzolo, owner and operator of Palazzolo Foods, has felt the need for speed. An avid dirt biker, he unwinds by riding at local motocross spots like Possum Hollow Motocross Park. He’s even competed in dozens of motocross competitions over the years and has always loved the sport’s adrenaline-pumping excitement. These days, what he enjoys most about dirt biking is riding with friends and family—particularly his 11-year-old son, Rocco.
A Bluegreen / Big Cedar Vacations, LLC Development Project
HP Engineering, Inc. Phone: 479-899-6370
Palmerton & Parrish, Inc. Phone: 417-864-6000
Wells & Scaletty Phone: 417-890-7711
SWT Design Phone: 314-644-5700
er Engineering -9697
NOW HIRING EXPERIENCED MANAGERS & SUPERINTENDENTS Surveyor: Wolfe Surveying,PROJECT Inc. Phone: 417-334-8820
BUILDING TRUST SINCE 1978. 4820 N TOWNE CENTRE DR | OZARK, MO 65721 | PHONE: 417-887-6897 | FAX: 417-447-3040 | WWW.LSCINC.COM
MARCH / APRIL 2017 | $4.95
03 2111 S. Eastgate Ave. Springfield, MO 65809
VOLUME 2 ISSUE 3