Thursday, November 22, 2012

ATB and University of Lethbridge host Small Business Institute Speakers Series

Dr. M. Gordon Hunter and Dan Kazakoff
T. Lucas photo

Toni Lucas

Alberta Treasury Branch (ATB) and the University of Lethbridge (U of L) have joined forces to create a Small Business Institute Speakers Series, the first of which happened at the Ramada Inn in Pincher Creek on Wednesday November 21.

ATB Relationship Manager Mark Barber acted as Master of Ceremonies introducing U of L Faculty of Management members Director Dan Kazakoff and Dr. M. Gordon Hunter. Kazakoff and Hunter have written two books together, 'Little Empires' published in 2008 and 'Small Business:  Journey to Success' published in 2012, both of which are available at the U of L bookstore.

"One of the goals is rather than have the small business people come out to say, Calgary or Lethbridge, we thought it was important to start to build relationships in the communities, the chance to come to where these businesses are and give these talks," explained Kazakoff.

Hunter added "I'll be talking about the type of research projects we have planned, and we'll be asking them for input on what kind of research projects that they think we should conduct.  The input that we get tonight will drive some of the investigations that we will do in the future."

"We get to hear from people in small business and the issues that they're confronting on a day to day basis, and that may provide us with some research initiatives that we may take,"continued Kazakoff.  "The best thing is actually the stories you hear from people.  The histories of their small businesses, their successes, what they've learned from the challenges that they've had.  Gord and I both want to connect with the community.  These are applied initiatives   We want to not only have value for ourselves, but for the individuals that run small businesses."

Kazakoff talked about 'Little  Empires' and the successes and challenges of multi generational businesses in Lethbridge and area while Hunter focused on their second book 'Small Business:  Journey to Success'.  "It's a little more academic, and talks about some of the research projects that we've done," Hunter explained.

The two make a dynamic team and were excited during the question and answer period that followed the presentation.  They truly were engaged in discussing the challenges that those that were gathered face.

Kazakoff and Hunter expressed their appreciation to ATB for sponsoring the lecture series and to U of L's Steve Craig for coordinating it.  The even will also be held in Vulcan on February 2, in Medicine Hat on February 27, in Cardston on March 20, and in Brooks on April 10.

Related link: Excerpt of 'Small Business: Journey to Success'

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