Showing posts from June, 2011

Oakland County offers Business Basics workshops

Oakland County Business Center offers the following workshops in July: Pre-Business Research, 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. July 7. (There is no charge); CEED Microloan Orientation, 9 to 11 a.m. Wednesday, July 13. (There is no charge); Fundamentals of Starting A Business 9 a.m. to noon Thursday, July 14. (The cost is $30); Legal & Financial Basics  9 a.m. to noon Tuesday, July 19. (There is no charge); July 21: Writing a business plan workshop, 9 a.m. to noon, Thursday, July 21. (The cost is $40) and Fundamentals of Marketing Your Business, 9 a.m. to noon, July 28, (The cost is $40).
The workshops are held at Oakland County Executive Office Building Conference Center, Building 41 West, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road, Waterford Township. Pre-registration is required for all workshops. Call 248-858-0783 or visit

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Skip the drama, and help your team get to work!

by Joe Wichowski, president and founder of Wixom-based Traction Consulting Group, EBIZ Technology

We’ve all had it before.  Something happens at the office, “The Event” – a customer has a complaint, a project gets off track, or employees aren’t getting along because “so-and-so said such-and-such.”

As an entrepreneur, I believe that my teams’ healthy reaction to these events is critical to the success of our company. These events need to be self-healing, self-resolving. I cannot ignore them, yet I cannot be the person to drive the change necessary when they come up.
Recently, John Drury, from The Inside Out Edge  (, provided me with a tool that I found extremely useful in helping my team understand the Event process, and how best to skip the drama and get to the Work that will truly resolve the Event.

Essentially, around everything we do, there is an inevitable "Event". This could be a project that is not being delivered up to standards, a customer …

Employer seminar to avoid litigation

AGIS, a full-service insurance agency in Birmingham will host a no-cost informative seminar, “Ten Things Employers Can Do to Avoid Litigation, and the Latest Health Care Reform Updates” 8:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. Tuesday, June 28 at the Troy Marriott Hotel, 200 W. Big Beaver Road, Troy. Breakfast is at 8:30, with the seminar following from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. This program has been approved through the Human Resource Certification Institute for two hours of continuing education recertification credit, visit the HRCI homepage at For more information, about the class, call 248-530-1600 or visit

Timely AR collections critical to operational success

 Here's a good "learn from my experience" guest blog from the president of Farmington Hills-based ZenaComp.

By Mark Lichtman, President of ZenaComp of Farmington Hills President of EO Detroit
You meet with a prospective client, present your proposal and the client says “let’s get started!” You’re excited, want to meet their tight deadline and immediately get to work on the new project.  You will invoice them at the end of the month and expect them to pay in 30 days.  Isn’t this how all business is done? I learned at ZenaComp, my technology services company, that the above scenario may work most of the time but I got stuck with slow-paying and non-paying clients more than I would have liked.  I came to understand that when I gave my clients “net 30” terms, the credit I was extending to them in the form of the salary I pay my employees, the equipment and software I purchased on their behalf was actually like an unsecured loan from the bank. Some of my clients were credit wort…

Where is the ROI on Social Media?

Social media campaigns have quickly become a staple in comprehensive marketing strategies. Across North America, many companies are dedicating growing portions of their marketing budgets to social media because they think they are supposed to, they have to or they need to. But it’s not as simple as getting and maintaining an online presence, says Scott Wilson, CEO of and Canada’s leading expert on web sales and online marketing using Search Engine Optimization. “Companies are investing all this money in social media, and the one question they are left asking is, ‘Where is the return on my investment?’” Wilson says. “The truth is there usually isn’t one. They are launching these campaigns and getting dismal returns because they aren’t taking a step back and looking at how they are actually using these social media tools.” Perhaps the most popular social media tool is Facebook, but it’s not as simple as just creating a page and hoping people will find it. Even cre…

5 Ways To Tell If Your Company’s CEO Earns His/Her Pay

Submitted by Ginny
Dr. Linda Henman isn’t as concerned about CEOs getting paid large salaries as much as she is about them being worth it.
CEOs earned an average annual paycheck of $11 million in 2010, with pay soaring by an average of 23 percent last year, according to research released by the AFL-CIO in April. As the economy’s sluggish recovery has analysts worried, Henman, a consultant for Fortune 500 CEOs, believes that company top dogs who actually earn their money are easy to spot.
“Those at the top have three major responsibilities: Develop the business, grow talent, and make decisions that drive innovation,” said Henman, also author of Landing in the Executive Chair: How to Excel in the Hot Seat( “There is much shuffling at the top. Too often Boards don’t make wise decisions about CEOs and CFOs, and these executives, in turn, don’t make wise hiring decisions throughout the enterprise. But if leaders do a better job, companies …

Transform Your Poor Performers into High Achievers

Confronting poor performers in your organization can be nerve-wracking, difficult, and confusing. But according to author Dave Anderson, it is possible to approach these conversations with love, respect, and the promise of improvement while boosting your business in the process. Hoboken, NJ (June 2011)—Confronting poor performers: Of all the responsibilities that come along with leadership, it’s not likely to be among your favorites, and yet, it is among the most important things you’ll do for your organization. Chances are, you approach delivering this sort of unpleasant feedback in one of two ways: You wimp out and avoid it altogether, thus sparing everyone an uncomfortable scene (but perpetuating unproductive behaviors). Or you don’t hold back at all and let people have it—those poor performers will either shape up or ship out (you hope!), and if it’s the latter, then good riddance to a weak employee who couldn’t hack it. But according to author Dave Anderson, there is a middle groun…

Psychologist discusses behavior-based employment interviews

One of the best predictors of future job performance is past performance. Learn how to conduct behavior-based interviews that can help you determine how job candidates will perform in the future, 8:30 to 11:30 a.m., Wednesday, June 22, at the Jewish Community Center, 15110 W. Ten Mile Road, Oak Park, Michigan.
Moderated by Dr. Alan Resnick, an industrial/organizational psychologist with HR Solutions Group – a division of JVS, the interactive session with help people who make hiring decisions learn strategies for successful interviewing, testing and assessment and how to develop behavior-based interview questions and collect behavioral examples. Participants will also receive a glossary of behavioral questions.
The event is free and begins with refreshments at 8:30 a.m., presentation at 9 a.m. and networking from 10 to 10:30 a.m. To reserve a seat, contact Paul Lefkowitz at

Pontiac holds forum featuring L. Brooks

Forum for Our Future is an event that brings together citizens and business and community leaders in Pontiac. It is 2 to 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 15, at Baker College Student Center, 1500 University Dr., Auburn Hills. Featured speakers include L. Brooks Patterson, Oakland County Executive; Joy Calloway, St. Joseph Mercy Oakland; Phillip Henry, Branch Manager of Fifth Third Bank; Kwame Stephens, Principal of Pontiac High School and Jeff Love, President of Baker College. Contact the Pontiac Regional Chamber at 248-335-9600 or There is no charge to attend this forum.

Pontiac holds old time pub crawl downtown

The Pontiac Regional Chamber, Pontiac Downtown Business Association, Greater Pontiac Sesquicentennial Commission and The Rise of the Phoenix program have partnered to host two exciting days of open houses and family fun!  The weekend welcomes and introduces the 52 new businesses that have opened in downtown while celebrating the City’s 150th year.
On Friday, June 17, the fun will include an Old-Time Pub Crawl and Cruise N’ the Loop.
5 to 10 p.m. Old Time Pub Crawl Come hungry and thirsty and try signature drinks and dishes at the many        restaurants on Saginaw, Mill and Perry Streets including:             Mill Street Grille 12 S Mill Street                     Acoustic Madness, guitar and drum duo, performing rock and reggae             Crofoot 1 South Saginaw                    50s theme in the café             JD’s Keyboard Lounge 1 North Saginaw                    Free Admission-No Cover Charge             Blue Note Café 7 North Saginaw             Lucas Coney Island 29 North Saginaw    …

New Whitepaper on Credit Card Processing Available

Request our free white paper and learn more about credit card processing and the different entities that are involved when a credit card payment is processed. This white paper also showcases how Azox can help fill the void by providing a solution for credit card processing in Microsoft Dynamics GP.

Additionally, this article will also educate the reader on PCI compliance standards and how maintaining a secure environment is essential in helping prevent cardholder data from being compromised. Request a free copy of the white paper here and it will be emailed to you.

Getting your business spotlight in The Oakland Press

We seek businesses to feature as business spotlights on The Oakland Press business page.

Spotlights are profiles of businesses. These can include more details and quotes. Try to include:
    * What is the news? (New location? New business? New owners?)
    * How long has the business been in business?
    * What is important to readers? (Are expanded services available?)
    * What kind of business is it?
    * How many employees?
Spotlights generally include a photo of the business with an identified person in the photo (owner, manager, etc.)

Include electronic photos and shots of individuals. Photos focus attention on your news. Include photo caption information that identifies all people in the photo from left to right, says where the photo was taken, what event took place, etc.

How to submit news
Send news releases via email to Attach electronic photos to the email.

See if stress is taking its toll

Automation Alley and St. Joseph Mercy Oakland present an event focusing on alleviating workplace stress and the impact it can have on overall health and well-being. The free event is noon to 4 p.m. Thursday, June 9 at Automation Alley Headquarters, 2675 Bellingham, Troy. It features a light lunch at noon followed by a panel discussion, 12:45 to 2 p.m. Speakers include Ramesh Madhavan M.D, D.M. - Cardiac Implications of Executive Stress; Donald E. Deering, Ph.D. - Executive Stress and Depression and Tom Rifai, M.D. - Nutritional and Metabolic Implications of Executive Stress. Free blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, BMI and stress and depression, (self-assessment) screenings will be available until 4 p.m. Register at or call 800-372-6094.

League of Women Voters host Gary Peters, Debbie Stabenow

League of Women Voters Oakland Area Annual Meeting with Guest Speakers is 9:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 11, at Shenandoah Country Club, 5600 Walnut Lake Road, West Bloomfield Township. U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow and U. S. Representative Gary Peters will be the guest speakers. The cost is $30, including lunch. The cost to hear the speakers only is $10. Pre-registration is required, call 248-594-6602 or visit

Trade shows feature MIchigan agriculture

The Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development is hosting Michigan Pavilions at the 2011 Michigan Restaurant Association and Michigan Grocers Association shows. The deadline for reserving booth space is July 14.
The Michigan Pavilion is a selected area within the trade show where Michigan’s agriculture-based companies are identified for attendees while promoting their Michigan made products. Both events will be attended by industry insiders such as buyers and distributors.
Through federal grant dollars, both trade associations and MDARD are offering booth space at significantly discounted prices with additional discounts to specialty crop companies.
The Michigan Restaurant Association show is Sept. 12 at Shanty Creek Resorts in Bellaire. Visit
The Michigan Restaurant Association show is 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 18 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 19 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi. Visit o…

Top 9 challenges of growing a business

Submitted by Dottie DeHart, DeHart & Company Public Relations

Stanford, CA (June 2011)—For many, achieving the American Dream means taking control of their destiny, quitting their 9 to 5, and opening the doors to their very own business. These brave entrepreneurial souls have shaped American enterprise, and today, they’re playing the very important role of helping to drive the nation’s economic recovery. And if you’re one of these brave souls—pouring your blood, sweat, and tears into running your own business— Professor Ed Hess stresses that there’s no time for rest. Once you’ve got your start-up off the ground, he says, the daunting task of growing your business to the next level must begin.

“Growing a business presents a whole new group of challenges for entrepreneurs,” says Hess, author of the new book "Growing an Entrepreneurial Business: Concepts & Cases."
“The good news is that most businesses experience the same or very similar challenges when it comes to growth.…

Ultimate Networker is June 10

Entrepreneurs and professionals are invited to attend The Ultimate Mixer and Business Connector, 6 to 9 p.m. Friday June 10 at The Skyline Club in Southfield. Hosted by the South East Michigan Entrepreneurs Association (SEMEA) and The Skyline Club, there will be a short presentation by Keynote Speaker Terry Bean, author of The Universal Guide to Business Networking. He will discuss how to build and leverage professional relationships more effectively. To follow, will be a speed networking icebreaker and a mix and mingle to allow attendees to begin to practice what they learn. Hors d’oeuvres will be served. Participants are required to submit a brief profile online before registering. Registration is $20. For more information or to register visit or call 248-491-3146.

Area golf outings tee off summer

June 6
The 2011 Rochester Regional Chamber of Commerce Golf Outing is 9:30 a.m. June 6 at Fieldstone Golf Course, 1984 Taylor Road, Auburn Hills. The shotgun start is at 11 a.m. There is a buffet lunch on the course and a dinner buffet and after hours mixer 4 to 6 p.m. with an awards presentation at 5:30 p.m. The cost is $100 per golfer. To register, call 248-651-6700 or email

June 6
The 21st Annual Hank Greenberg Memorial Golf Invitational (The Greenberg), a day-long golf, dinner, auction and social event with legendary athletes and sports celebrities to raise money to fight prostate cancer will be at 10 a.m. June 6 at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills. Attendees will be treated to golf on the South or North courses at world famous Oakland Hills Country Club, open bar, and a special program featuring Frank Robinson, Jimmy Roberts, and Emcee Jeremy Schaap in a dynamic sports panel, as well as awards presentations. The celebration will include a silent auctio…