Make your home page

This week’s BE&O Show highlights tips on how to turn big events into big opportunities. Our team at WISH-TV recently took advantage of motor racing’s biggest month of the year.

Last week, friends and clients were invited for a behind-the-scenes look at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. This opportunity allowed people to talk and get to know one another better.

Director of Sales at Circle City Broadcasting, Jason Hunter, says that people often do business with people they like and respect.

Opportunities like this one also allow you to thank your clients for doing business with you and allow them to talk about doing business with each other.

Networking is an important part of a business. Big events like this one give the chance to build new connections and strengthen old relationships.

It is also important to follow up with the connections you make at these events and to do it in a timely manner. If not, they may move on to the next.

Take advantage of opportunities to get to know people. When you get to know someone, you get to know more about how they like to do business.

The Office of Minority and Women Business Development gathered at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway last week to talk about ways to involve minorities, women, veterans, and disabled-owned businesses in public-private partnerships.

One of the biggest opportunities lies in the construction sector.

President of the Darden Group, an Executive Construction Management company, Akilah Darden, says during the month of May people are enthusiastic so why not bring them to the track to talk about being intentional with equitable opportunities for diverse vendors?

They brought developers and contractors who control the contract as well as diverse contractors to meet and formulate relationships. Then they learn their capacity and build a team around them to get the job done.

It doesn’t just include getting diverse vendors but also getting the workforce into the trades to help build it. It is important to find people that do things well and to get them to stay in the state of Indiana and give them equitable opportunities.

Another construction company, Nubian Construction, wants to not only build buildings but build people’s lives by giving them an opportunity to get engaged on projects and grow their company.

Having these big events allows an opportunity for everyone to get engaged in working with minority and women ran small businesses to come together and work on projects.

On Tuesday, the Indy Chamber, Hispanic Business Council gathered corporate and civic leaders from across the city to recognize five people paving the way for Hispanic progress.

Director of the Hispanic Business Council at Indy Chamber, Marcelo Montero, introduced some of the honorees.

One of them is Michelle Cox, CEO of Cox Residential Roofing, who explains as a Hispanic woman in business she wants to set an example for other Hispanic people and women to follow her business. Also, she wants to help change the way the Hispanic community is looked at when it comes to business.

The Hispanic Business Council hosts four events a year. The Conexion 5 for 500 is their main event with over 300 attendees.

Other events taking place this week in business include:

The 2023 Earth Day Indiana Festival, Saturday, June 3rd 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Garfield Park. The festival will include at least 110 exhibitors, live music, food trucks, a beer garden, and a place to meet and support other local businesses that are helping the environment.

Also, the Innopower minority week thinking session is June 13th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Martin University.

This content is made possible by InnoPower.

Our success story this week is about an Indiana florist who has decorated the necks of Indy 500 champions for 30 years and who opened her own shop on the strength of her floral talent.

Julie Vance is the owner of Buck Creek and Bloom, located in Yorktown, Indiana. In addition to creating her signature designs for local special occasions, she’s world-famous for assembling the iconic floral racing award.

It opened in November of 2007, but she has been doing flowers since 1988. She opened in her hometown and said she would not have started a flower shop if she didn’t have good design skills and knowledge of the business. She emphasized that it’s really hard work and you have to be really dedicated and put in long hours.

She has been the designer that has the privilege of making the Indianapolis 500 winners’ wreath. It is a Borg Warner tradition that the winner of the race is crowned with a wreath, drinks the milk, and then his face is put in silver on the Borg Warner trophy in the beginning.

Here at the shop, her signature look is probably what she calls her sticks because she uses a lot of natural vines and curly willow and pods and shelf mushrooms and moss and all those real natural things mixed in with the flowers and plants, which what sets them apart from others.

Her path to success was just hard work including work at many other flower shops. Julie just loved this kind of work and it was her artistic outlet, so she always knew she would like to be a flower shop owner.

Matthew B. Murphy III, co-founder and president of Emboss Partners, a consulting and capital acquisition firm, talks about how the lending market has changed and what the future may look like.

He highlights the changes in interest rates on lending money. For a long time, interest rates on lending money have been cheap and rates have shown little to no fluctuation over time. In the last couple of years, that has all changed.

Murphy explains that interest rates have increased and the rates are not as stable anymore. What may be affordable one day may not be the next.

The sensitivity of interest rates has forced both lenders and borrowers to ask more questions and spend more time planning. It is also important to have people to assist in planning, accountants, and financial professionals, that can give businesses the information they need.

Murphy says it is most important for business owners to plan, plan and plan. Be prepared to navigate the uncertainty of financial markets.

This week on The BE&O Show, Jimmie L. McMillan, Chief Diversity Officer and Senior Corporate Counsel of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, spoke on how their business units strive to be more inclusive.

One way McMillan accomplished this was with the plan titled “Race for Equity and Change.” He partnered with Roger Penske and Mark Miles with the idea to change motorsports.

Starting with their employees, McMillan created measurable goals in hiring, promotion development, and throughout their workforce.

Another way the Indy 500 became more inclusive was by partnering with minority and women-owned businesses.

The last way the Indy 500 has done more to become inclusive is by reaching out and inviting 10,000 new fans each year.

Their current goal for their developers and general contractors is to connect with their diverse group of construction vendors.

This content is made possible by the Indiana Economic Development Center.

Today we are highlighting the success of Indiana resident Sunny Lu Williams.

Williams is currently president of Techserv Corporation.

“I come from a long line of serial entrepreneurs” Williams states. Her grandmother founded Techserv in 1992 as an immigrant.

After her grandmother took the citizenship and driver’s test, eager to learn the ins and outs. She followed those directions to create her own business.

Williams mentions how her grandmother was one of the first police women in Taiwan and had an administrative capacity within the Taipei Metropolitan Police Agency.

She mentions the lifestyle companies her grandmother created within her community. As her children got older, Techserv became an E-right business, which is a supplier to schools and the government. Techserv’s big success occurred in the late nineties.

The company reached over 47 schools in the Chicago Public School System supplying them with computer labs. Which introduced those schools to STEM education.

Over the years, Techserv evolved from doing instruction following process systems to evolving them. After Williams’ grandmother founded Techserv in 1992, her mother strengthened Techserv’s supply chain. Sunny Lu, alumni of Purdue University helps benefit the company’s system design.

“The heart of it is working with folks that both design the system are users of the system and have the ability to look back on whether or not that system, which is a collection of processes, instructions, and ways to do things, whether it ultimately helped or hindered the population that was intended to serve” Williams states.

Governor Holcomb declared a proclamation naming it small business week throughout the state.

The IUC and the Indiana Small Business Development Center are going all over the state, recognizing outstanding entrepreneurs and small businesses that make Indiana communities places where people want to live.

We visited Butler University to hand out the woman-owned award to Indie Power Products.

Nancy Rider and the team have done an outstanding job getting the business off the ground and growing, and they’re excited to recognize the hard work.

The recognition is humbling and they’re honored given the fact that there are so many small businesses in the state of Indiana.

Being a woman-owned small business takes a lot of hard work and the recognition is gratifying.

Today on Running Your Business Day to Day, it’s halfway through the month of May and time to check in on some of the news businesses in Speedway, Indianapolis.

Brooke Minn, the owner of B.Erin Designs and board president of the Speedway Chamber of Commerce, explains her business has been storefront for seven years and recently moved locations to a building at 1320 North Maine. The store is now located in a more visible location allowing customers to easily access it when visiting Speedway for race weekend.

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway attracts thousands of people to the town of Speedway every year, which brings customers to small businesses in the town.

“May is our Christmas, always has been and every year it gets better and better,” Minn said.

Town Councilor of Speedway, Vincent Noblet, introduces the new development on Main Street. It includes a combination of shops, condos, and Airbnb. This change was made possible by the major stakeholders in the town of Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and Allison Transmission, that stay and succeed.

Speedway is nearing its’ 100 year anniversary. Noblet says there is still more change and growth in store for the town as they continue to redevelop.

President and CEO of Fifth Third Bank, Tim Spence, gives insight into the health of regional banks and whether it could affect your ability to access capital.

On May 3rd, Fifth Third Bank celebrates “Fifth Third Day,” the third day of the fifth month, by volunteering in the community and reminding us about the importance of supporting one another. Spence emphasizes community as an important part of the success of banks.

Spence explains bank failures over the last month and a half that have resulted from a number of banks being more focused on the tech sector than the real economy.  “The good news for the system overall and in particular, the state of Indiana, is that the banks that are in operation in the Midwest were virtually unaffected,” Spence said.

The President and CEO emphasizes the importance of healthy and strong communities and customers.

Midwest banks benefit from this by having stable communities and customers that support and understand the importance of this.