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Newsletter for January 26th


Survey and Student Feedback

Recapping our class business’ successes and failures, the class read feedback from surveys given to the participating businesses. In a few months, students will distribute another form to track how the expo impacted the businesses. Since the goal was to increase the community’s knowledge of the businesses in Jasper County, this tracking enables students to determine the level of success of their business.


Meeting with Mentors

Mentor day gave students more feedback on their class business as well as guidance as they begin the journey of the personal business. The mentors offer students someone who can play the ‘devil’s advocate’ and ask the hard questions. They also give a different perspective that is invaluable. We appreciate our mentors and the time they spend meeting with students and being willing to email/text the students as needed.


Judy McClure's Signs and Graphics

Judy McClure

In preparation of their individual businesses, students met with Judy McClure to see what options they had for branding and signage. Students learned about the products available, customer care, machinery processes, and how colors affect people's perceptions. Being in business since 1991, Judy has a wealth of knowledge to share. Yet, she told students that she learns something with each new project. Another concept Judy emphasized was the importance of keeping good relationships with everyone from the delivery people to the customer.

We appreciate Judy taking time to share about her business ‘Judy McClure’s Signs and Graphics’.


Sales and Service

Louis Ochs Chevrolet Buick

Louis Ochs and Gail Garbe gave students a lot to think about as they answered questions about Louis Ochs Chevrolet and gave the Jasper CEO class a tour. The tips shared by Louis include: Be a people person. Be honest and do what you say you’ll do. Have a good work ethic.

Since 1962, when Louis started his business, a lot has changed! He shared the differences between owning a business in 1962 versus owning a business in 2018. One thing that never changed is the value of serving the customer. “You have to believe in what you sell. Yet, the selling price isn’t everything; your reputation has value as well. The seed you sow is the kind that will grow. Sow the right kind!”

Students left better informed on what to bring when buying a car (financing, registration, driver’s license, insurance, and trade-in title), the idea of ‘floor plan’, shopping locally benefits, and tips on salesmanship. We appreciate Louis and Gail taking their time to present to the CEO class. And remember, Louis Ochs Chevrolet is the nearest location for bus and heavy vehicle testing!


Craig Emmerich and Dr. Blake Schroedter

Elite Fitness

What an amazing way to start our day at Elite Fitness! We competed in team building activities and really worked up a sweat! We are so appreciative of Craig Emmerich for orchestrating a fantastic opportunity for the CEO class. If you have not visited Elite Fitness, you are missing out! The team atmosphere and fun energy draws you in and, as Craig put it, “We suffer together”. The have free open gym days every other Saturday, the 27th being the next one! Go check them out and find a new passion. They have classes for 10-15 year olds, a strength-training class for 16 and older, and a legends class targeted at functional movements for older adults.

Owner, Dr. Blake Schroedter, also spoke with students about being an entrepreneur. He currently is a psychologist specializing in veterans with PTSD, a Captain in the National Guard, creator of Easy Go Baby (a meal replacement powder container and dispenser), and a professor. “Be okay with failure, but more importantly, develop what failure looks like so that it can become a learning opportunity,” he told students. He was able to explain psychological reactions to stimuli and how to compartmentalize the stressor to allow for higher-order thinking to occur. Dr. Blake also stressed the importance of self-care.

When it comes to business, he takes the shotgun approach and diversifies his sources of income. To start a company, he draws on the knowledge from the book Lean Start Up. He shared a variety of concepts, but one that resounded with our CEO training is to ‘be comfortable with the uncomfortable’. Thank you, Craig and Dr. Blake, for taking time with our class and for the service of fitness you offer to Newton and surrounding areas!


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Get Involved in CEO

The manner in which the CEO program is funded is critical to its success and sustainability. All funds raised are used exclusively for the Jasper County CEO program. To participate, a 3-year $1000 per year commitment is required. Business Partner Investors commitments of time and energy are also critical to the program's success. Contributions may be tax deductible, as our organization is a 501(c)(3) not for profit organization.

When we are not touring local businesses, we need a place to host the class. During that time, the 0 CEO students and their Facilitator would meet at your site where they would also have guest speakers and guests from the community attend. Hosting requires a facility with internet access and adequately accommodates up to 5 people.

We are looking for people to share real-life stories about the concepts of running a business, from strategic thinking, product development to marketing, and cash flow management. Also, sharing your personal successes and failures are what recent classes have enjoyed the most.


If you are interested in participating in any of the above programs, use our contact form to send us a message


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