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03-03-2017: Entrepreneur YOU Conference

Michigan Business Network
February 4, 2017 7:00 PM

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Learn from the Experts

A Day of Empowerment and Inspiration

Entrepreneur YOU is designed to teach women with a passion for entrepreneurship about the challenges and opportunities women encounter as they start and grow businesses. Leave with educational and technical resources, sharpen your skills and gain powerful contacts.

The Entrepenuer YOU Conference is designed to educate women with a passion for owning their business about the challenges and oppurtunities inherent to the endevour-- from planning to launch to growth.  The conferenence provides a broad overview of topics such as marketing, finance, legel and regulatory issues, business modeling, staffing, sales, leadership and more.  In addition to sharpening skills, you will gain powerful contacts and learn new information to drive sucessful  business results.  For those of you unable to make it to Grand Rapids, there will be a conference in Lansing on March 10, 2017.



8:00 – 9:00 am Registration Lobby Exhibitor Showcase First Floor Continental Breakfast & Networking Floor 1 Rm 1-3


9:00 – 9:45 am Welcome and Introductions Auditorium Pamela Imperato, Ph.D. Dean, Donald W. Maine College of Business Davenport University

Bonnie Nawara CEO, Grand Rapids Opportunities for Women

Carolyn Cassin President & CEO, Michigan Women’s Foundation Keynote Address Holly Katko, Author, Entrepreneur YOU President, U-Connect, Inc.


9:45 – 9:55 am Break (restrooms are located near stairway)

Exhibitor Showcase First Floor


9:55 – 11:00 am Breakout Sessions You Got This! Small Business Law Made Manageable Floor 1 Room 1 Learn basic principles of small business legal concepts in this interactive session designed to be legalese free. Session includes a quick reference guide and checklist. Presented by Heather Gilkey, Attorney Lee Reimann, Senior Partner Willingham & Cotè, P.C.

Inbound Marketing Floor 1 Room 3 Discover the methodology behind inbound marketing and how to apply it to your business. Learn how to attract customers at each stage of the purchasing funnel and achieve results with increased online traffic. Presented by Kendra Higgins Lead Designer, HA Digital Marketing

9:55 – 11:00 am Breakout Sessions (Continued)

Supply Chain “101” Room 204 Every business, large and small, has a supply chain. Learn what it is and how to apply management tips, techniques and resources to better manage risk and spending. Presented by Beth Clark Global Responsible Sourcing Manager, Herman Miller

Grow Sales with International Customers Room 206 95% of the world population, and 75% of its wealth, are outside U.S. Understand the best markets and know when it’s time to use exporting to increase your sales and diversify your customer base. Presented by Jade Sims and Erkan Kocas International Trade Specialists MSU International Business Center Pitch Perfection Room 208 Pitches can open doors of opportunity. This interactive session will focus on three types of pitches – idea, elevator and investment, and the success strategy behind each. Presented by Valerie Byrnes Business Incubator Manager Muskegon Innovation Hub

Stop Wishing. Stop Whining. Start Leading. Room 209-211 A straight talk no nonsense guide for women leaders to address the mindset needed to lead an organization to be operationally efficient, creative and entrepreneurial. Presented by Doreen Bolhuis, President Gymco

Cynthia Kay, President and CEO Cynthia Kay & Company Media Production

Tech Tips to Run Your Business like a Pro Room 210 Understand how to evaluate and leverage the considerable amount of tech tools available to run your business efficiently and profitably with expert tips, tricks and hacks. Presented by Sydney Lorraine Systems Integration Engineer Hype Digital Innovation


11:00 – 11:10 am Break (restrooms are located near stairway)

Exhibitor Showcase First Floor

11:10 – 12:00 pm Show Me the Money: Funding a Small Business Auditorium Explore the various funding sources for start-ups and small business ventures - from crowdfunding and angel investing to traditional bank loans and micro lending. Learn what funding resources are available to entrepreneurs.

Moderator: Carolyn Cassin, General Partner BELLE Michigan Fund LP


Kelli Rose, Vice President Community Banking Independent Bank

Bonnie Nawara, CEO Grand Rapids Opportunities for Women


12:00 – 1:00 pm Tours New Building Entrepreneurial Center Donald W. Maine College of Business

Lunch & Networking Boxed Lunch Includes: Choice of Chicken Salad or Tuna Salad Croissant Turkey, Ham, Roast Beef or Veggie Wrap Fruit Salad Cookie Beverage

Exhibitor Showcase First Floor


1:00 – 2:05 pm Breakout Sessions

Building a High Performance Team Floor 1 Room 1 Explore the critical elements and five stages required for a team to develop, become effective and sustain results. Presented by Dino Signore Entrepreneur Education Manager Edward Lowe Foundation


1:00 – 2:05 pm Breakout Sessions (Continued)

Target Your Market Based on Your Value Floor 1 Room 3 Get clients knocking on your door! Learn how to get to the market you need in as short of time as possible. Presented by Holly Katko, Author, Entrepreneur YOU President, U-Connect, Inc. Budgeting and Credit Basics Room 204 Learn foundational skills for creating, following and managing a budget. Understand how credit score and debt affect your business and future success. Presented by Scott Dobson Consumers at Work Manager Consumers Credit Union

Government Markets: Opportunities and Competition Room 206 $1 billion in revenue was generated in Michigan last year through government contracts. Learn what it takes to successfully compete for these dollars, how to research opportunities and what free services are available to help. NOTE: BRING A LAPTOP FOR THIS SESSION Presented by Sheila Kreason and Shelia Polacco PTAC Counselors Procurement & Technical Assistance Center

The Bounce Back Effect Room 208 Learn the ten keys necessary for overcoming setbacks with confidence. Presented by Veverly Austin Founder & President, Confident Living

Branding Building Blocks Room 209-11 Walk through each step of building a brand – from how brand visuals communicate brand value to key message strategies. Leave with brand launch tools and tactics. Presented by Ami Iceman-Hauter Brand Manager, M3 Group

Breathing Life Into the Strategic Plan Room 210 Transform your organization’s planning processes. Learn how using a 1-page strategic plan can keep you focused, define priorities and drive results. Presented by Tom Hamp, President AdviCoach of Mid-Michigan



2:05 – 2:15 pm Break (restrooms are located near stairway)

Exhibitor Showcase First Floor


2:15 – 3:20 pm Breakout Sessions

Connecting for Success Floor 1 Room 1 This interactive workshop will present tactics and strategies to improve your ability to genuinely connect with others. Learn how to build trust and respect, then translate that to influence and success. Presented by Anne Bonney, CEO Different Shoe Enterprises

Opening Doors to Closing Sales and Keeping Them Floor 1 Room 3 Learn simple steps to turn those networking leads into sales. This workshop will focus on face-to-face selling, referral generation and how to grow deeper relationships with current customers. Presented by Holly Katko, Author, Entrepreneur YOU President, U-Connect, Inc.

When Passion Leads Room 204 This interactive workshop will introduce fun, intentional activities to unlock the power and passion in all of us. Learn a hands-on technique that will help you set goals, visualize future dreams and think through projects. Presented by Marta E. Soto, Owner Adventures in Music

Turn Analytics into Action: Optimizing Your Marketing Room 206 Learn to utilize and interpret SEO, website and email marketing analytics to positively influence customer behavior. Presented by Hanna Burmeister, Marketing Manager Michigan Small Business Development Center

Achieving Success: Go Further, Faster Room 208 Scaling a business means leadership from the top, coupled with systems that vault you forward. Learn what it takes to go further, faster. Presented by Beverly Wall CEO, Languages International, Inc.

2:15 – 3:20 pm Breakout Sessions (Continued)

Social Media for Your Business Room 209-11 There is no escaping social media; it’s essential to running a successful business. Learn how to navigate this ever changing landscape and succeed! Presented by Lynne Jarman Johnson Chief Marketing Officer Consumers Credit Union

Understanding Financial Statements Room 210 Financial statements are the basic tools for determining how well the business is performing. This workshop will provide a basic understanding of the components and purposes of financial statements. Presented by Angela Sanborn Vice President, Commercial Banking Independent Bank _____________________________________________________________________________ 

3:20 – 3:30 pm Break (restrooms are located near stairway)

Exhibitor Showcase First Floor _____________________________________________________________________________

3:30 – 4:30 pm Success Stories: The Entrepreneurs Tale Auditorium You don’t have to start out as an expert in order to run a successful business. Many entrepreneurs run into roadblocks, and they persevere on the path to eventual success. The difference between successful people and those we never hear about again is that the former kept going. Let these real life success stories inspire you to take the lessons from today and shoot for the stars tomorrow.

Moderator: Jennifer Deamud, COO and Associate State Director Michigan Small Business Development Center

Panelists: Karen Smoots, Founder The Green Glove Dryer

Amy Ritsema, Co-Owner OnSite Wellness LLC

Mallory Root, Founder Roots Brew Shop

Closing Remarks & Raffle

Event Details

  • Date: Friday, March 3, 201 
  • Time: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
  • Location: Davenport University
  •                 6191 Kraft Ave SE
  •                 Grand Rapids, MI 49512


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