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January 2012

WBC Sponsored Events

Sales Seminar - January 24, 2012


Did 2011 bring the sales results you were hoping for? Was your pipeline full of opportunities coming into the new year to sustain solid 1st quarter business development? Does your business plan include your prospecting activity?


If you answered no to any of these questions, you must attend the Prospecting Workshop sponsored by the Women's Business Center. Prospecting Guru Breandan Filbert will be discussing strategies and will outline a process to develop your prospecting plan for 2012. You will learn up to date tactics on networking, Linked In, and referral prospecting that will lead you to opportunities with great prospects.  You will walk away with an understanding of what has to happen each day, week and month to reach your business development goals in 2012.  Don't miss this session!


January 24, 2012, 9:00 - 10:30 am, $20

Women's Business Center, 8527 Bluejacket Street, Lenexa, KS 66214


Register Online
Questions? Contact Dorothy Browning: 913-492-5922

Setting the Table: Successfully Starting and Managing a Restaurant 


"As a restaurateur, my job is to basically control the chaos and the drama. There's always going to be chaos in the restaurant business."
                                                                        - Rocco Dispirito

Kansas City is a great place for independent restaurants. Unfortunately, we have also seen many favorite restaurants come and go. Attend this seminar to get advice on strategies to start-up and succeed in one of the most challenging arenas of business. Lead by long time restaurateur Gary Warden of Piropos and Julie Deane of JDeaneJobs, a recruitment firm specializing in staffing for the restaurant industry, this session will include finding capital, selecting a location, controlling the most important elements of opening successfully, hiring the right people and preventing costly mistakes in the start-up process as well as other essential topics. 


February 21, 2012, 8:30 - 10:0 am, $20

Women's Business Center, 8527 Bluejacket Street, Lenexa, KS 66214


Register Online: www.onekcforwomen.com/calendar/restaurantseminar/

Questions? Contact Dorothy Browning: 913-492-5922


Back by Popular Demand! - Internet Marketing Workshop Series 

Internet Marketing in the Digital Age 


"I enjoyed all 5 classes. It was valuable to see how everything tied together" - Past attendee


Internet Marketing Primer (Wed, Jan. 18th)
Learn Internet Marketing trends, terms, and how a Comprehensive Internet Marketing Strategy will bring customers into your business.


Website Design, Development and Promotion (Wed, Jan. 25th)
A successful Internet Marketing Strategy starts with a great website. Learn how to ensure your website is the 'value hub' of your multidimensional marketing strategy.


SEO and Copywriting (Wed, Feb. 1st)
Learn how to ensure your words, messages, and the continuous flow of value, result in your customer 'tuning in' to your business. This is the essence of Pull Marketing and vital to the success of your Internet Marketing strategy.


Social Marketing / Networking / Engagement (Wed, Feb. 8th)
Discusses social engagement, so important to participating in the conversation your customers are either having about you - or your competitors. You need to be 'talked about'. Learn how to make that happen.


Using Google Analytics to Guide Your Strategy (Wed, Feb. 15th)
Know your customer and your market better using analytics and social listening systems. Your customer will tell you how to market to them - you just need to listen. We will teach you how.


All classes meet from 8:30 - 10:30 am
Women's Business Center, 8527 Bluejacket Street, Lenexa, KS 66214

Class fees are $20 per class or $80 for 5-class series.

Please register online at www.onekcforwomen.com


Questions? Contact: Dorothy Browning, dbrowning@kansaswbc.com

Announcing co-sponsored program with Kauffman FastTrac® 

WBC & Kauffman pilot new version of FastTrac® New Venture 


Kauffman FastTrac and the Women's Business Center (WBC) will be co-sponsoring a pilot of a new version of FastTrac® New Venture program targeted specifically for women. The WBC has been offering New Venture to a woman only audience for the past 10 years. They have found the dynamic generated during an all-woman class was advantageous to giving all the women in the class a voice.

In light of some of the recent research published by the Kauffman Foundation on the characteristics of women entrepreneurs, Kauffman FastTrac has been exploring additions to the core curriculum that would add further value to the participants experience and outcome. Using the established platform of the Women's Business Center program offers the FastTrac team the ability to pilot these additions locally while still offering the participants the ability to access the support services offered by the WBC following the completion of the class.

Dates & Location

The class will be held at the Kauffman Foundation each Wednesday beginning February 1st and concluding on April 4th.  Click here for additional details or to register for the class. 

Flourishing in Retail: Planning for Success 

Introducing FastTrac® Growth Venture for individuals in the retail sector beginning in February 2012 


Retail business face a unique set of challenges, especially in the current economy. The Women's Business Center is delivering a special FastTrac® Growth Venture program targeted to women retail business owners. Major FastTrac areas of product/service, marketing, financials, operations, managing for growth and leading the organization will be discussed. This retail specific class will provide you with a confidential analysis of your current financials as well as feedback from a mystery shopper. Taught by a facilitator with an in-depth knowledge of the retail sector, the sessions also include presentation's by experts in the field of retail.

This series allows you to think beyond the daily business routine and gain feedback from peers experiencing the same issues you face each day.


When: Meets every Tuesday evening, 6:00 - 8:00 pm beginning February 21st for seven consecutive weeks.

Where: The Women's Business Center - 8527 Bluejacket Street, Lenexa, KS


Click for full program details & Online Registration

Contact Dorothy Browning at (913)-492-5922 for additional details or questions. This class will be open to both men and women.

MicroLoan Program coming in January  


The microloan program which kicked off Oct. 28th is moving rapidly ahead! To date Justine Petersen, the microlender, is in the process of closing three microloans and two credit builder loans could close as early as next week.  

Credit Builder loans are small loans that serve as a:

* step loan to build a credit relationship with the community lender
* reportable line of credit to a credit bureau
* loan that replaces asset-stripping debt (i.e. payday loans) with asset building credit

Country Club Bank 

In addition, Country Club Bank and Bank Midwest have made the first contribution toward the establishment of a loan loss reserve fund needed to bring the microloan program to scale. We are working with other lending institutions to increase the size of the fund which will allow Justine Petersen to request even larger amounts of loanable dollars from the SBA. A second round of seminars and one-on-one sessions to introduce interested individuals to the program is scheduled for January 18th and 19th.


Contact Dorothy Browning (913) 492-5922 for additional details.  

In This Issue
Sales Seminar
Restaurant Seminar
Digital Marketing Workshops
New Co-Sponsored Pilot FastTrac® Program
Flourishing in Retail
Microloan Program
Client News


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The Women's Business Center
The Women's Business Center offers mentoring, resources, and consulting to women in the Kansas City Metropolitan area who wish to become an entrepreneur or who are currently operating their own business.  Through business consulting, classes, workshops, networking, and peer mentoring the WBC is the key to running a successful business for Kansas City's women.


Find out how the Women's Business Center can help you. Click here to learn more!


Join Our Mailing List!





The article in the December newsletter on Jennifer Meents contained a typo - her business is AAA Screening Service.

WBC Client News

"Best of the Best"

Travel Concepts, Inc. recognized as top travel agency.


Travel Concepts, Inc., owned by Denise Cannon, was recognized recently by Travel Impressions, one of the country's largest tour operators selling destinations worldwide, as a "Best of the Best" travel agency.  "Best of the Best" honors are bestowed on a limited number of agencies that are top producers for Travel Impressions, and that are considered to be its best partners. 

25 under 25 Announced

10 of the awardees are women owned or women led businesses


The Annual 25 under 25 awards were announced in December.  This award honors companies with fewer than 25 employees.  Winners were picked from over 1,000 nominations. 

Congratulations to:

Big Momma's Bakery-Cafe
Candid Marketing & Communications
Consolidated Printing Supplies
Great Getaways Travel
KDC Construction
KR Legal Management
Marathon Digital Services and My Smart Plans
Orbis Biosciences
Rockwell Labs Ltd
Summit Construction Company

To see all the awardees and get more details on this award, visit www.ithinkbigger.com   

Kay Saunders publishes new book


Kay Saunders, founder and CEO of Bellewether, Ltd. published a new book at the end of November, "Interpersonal Secrets for Professional Success", which focuses on the people side of productivity - turning personal potential into organizational performance.

"Everything in a world filled with people hinges on how well people negotiate to get along, accomplish tasks and utilize resources," said Saunders. "What could be more practical to achievement than gaining greater people skills?"  The book is designed to guide readers through practical information, achievable steps and realistic recommendations and is a comprehensive tool filled with relevant information important to forming and preserving personal, professional and social relationships. 

Share the good news 


Are you a Women's Business Center client or volunteer?  Something exciting going on in your business?  Let us know if you have added a major product or service line, expanded your territory or won an award.  We will help you spread the word. 


Email dbrowning@kansaswbc.com  


Fast Facts


Fortune 500 companies with three or more women on their boards for at least four years had an 84 percent higher return on sales, 46 percent higher return on equity and 60 percent higher return on invested capital, according to a Catalyst report.

Listen to Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook talk about women advancing as leaders by clicking here.

News from the Women's Business Center

WCC (Women's Capital Connection) has biggest year ever 

As 2011 draws to a close, we look back on a very exciting year for the WCC WCC


In 2011: 

  • 58 companies inquired about funding
  • 12 companies presented to WCC
  • 2 new investments were made
  • One add-on investment was made

    Women's Capital Connection members have invested over $1 Million Dollars in five companies since 2008! 
    Along the way, members report their level of knowledge and comfort in analyzing the opportunities presented has grown significantly.  2012 is shaping up to be an extremely productive year as well.  The number of companies looking for funding continues to grow, allowing members even more variety in the opportunities for investment.  The group is also growing, with several new members coming on board in January.



    Making Kansas City America's Most Entrepreneurial City


    At the Big Breakfast panel discussion in December, Kelly Scanlon posed the question of what can we do to accomplish the Big Five initiative of making Kansas City the most entrepreneurial city in America.  I was prepared to hear the usual litany of responses:  improve access to start up capital, decrease regulations, attract high tech/high growth companies.  Sally Hilkene of Churchill's gave an out of the box but spot on answer to the question.  Her answer: Everyone could buy locally. 

    The power of buying locally has been proven:

    * For every $100 spent in locally owned independent stores, $68 returns to the community through taxes, payroll, and other expenditures. If you spend that in a national chain, only $43 stays there. On-line spending means nothing comes home. 
    * Local businesses hire locally
    * Local businesses don't relocate to another state to take advantage of tax breaks
    * Local entrepreneurs give back to their community, not only in dollars donated, but in time.  
    * It's estimated that if half the employed population spent $50 each month in locally owned independent businesses, it would generate more than $42.6 billion in local revenue.   

    Imagine what our start-up survival rate for new businesses would be if everyone committed to doubling the number of purchases they made from local small businesses.  So next time you have a choice, think and act to make Kansas City the most entrepreneurially friendly city - buy local! 

    UMKC Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation: Entrepreneurship Scholars Program 


    UMKC has announced a new certificate program that is open to the public and designed to provide the support and resources needed to launch scalable, sustainable and successful ventures. Scholarships for the program are available. To read all about the program, visit their website.

    Microloan program for Ugandan incubator established 


    Hadijah Nankanja, the intern who spent four months with us as part of the State Department's Community Solutions program returned to Uganda in mid-December. One of her goals was to establish a microloan program which could help women in her business incubator grow their businesses. We would like to thank all of those individuals who contributed to the establishment of a $1,500 microloan fund that Hadijah will be able to use for this purpose. Hadijah has promised us regular updates on the women in her program as these funds are disbursed. An additional heartfelt thanks to Ruthie Harrison for hosting Hadijah throughout her stay.

    Mentor program begins in January 


    The WBC will be implementing our mentor program for FastTrac® grads in January. If you are a business owner or someone who supports small business and would like to find out more about mentoring opportunities, we will be hosting an information and networking session on January 17th.  Please contact Dorothy Browning for details. The mentoring program itself will begin at the end of January. 

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    Funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.  All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA