Monthly Message – January 2015 - Conway Center for Family Business

Monthly Message – January 2015


Monthly Message — January 2015

Family Business Advisory Boards from A-Z

January 15 – 7:30-9:00 a.m.

Alumni Hall at Ohio Dominican University

1216 Sunbury Rd., Columbus, OH 43219

Program presented by KeyBank

You’ve either heard it before – “Your family business needs an advisory board. It’s an important tool that will help you grow your business”. Or, you’ve asked yourself, “Am I getting the most out of my current advisory board? Are there best practices we should be implementing?” Either way, this program is for you! Howard Task, president of Howard Task Marketing, Management & Advisory Services, will tell you everything you need to know about starting and running an effective advisory board.

Task has served on many boards and counseled family business leaders on strategic planning facilitation, marketing, and general business services for more than 25 years. He’ll be joined by Joe Bowman, president of Century Resources, who will share his experiences and challenges in establishing and working with his own advisory board.

Topics will include:

  • Does your business need an advisory board – why or why not?
  • Compensation for board members
  • Getting the most out of your board
  • Advisory Board vs. Board of Directors – what’s the difference?

This program will be valuable for ALL family business leaders – whether you’re getting ready to start a board or already have one in place – so be sure to join us!

RSVP to Heather Howell at or 614-253-4820. The program is free for Conway Center members and $35 for non-members. Family business leaders attending for the first time may attend as our guest.


Better Your Bottom Line:

Incentives, Resources,

and Tax Breaks for Your

Family Business

January 28 – 8:00-9:00 a.m.

Griffin Student Center, Rm. 274

Ohio Dominican University

1216 Sunbury Rd., Columbus, OH 43319

Come learn about incentives and resources available for your family business during this Roundtable led by Jim Bechtel of Conway Center Service Provider GBQ Partners. During this program, Jim and his staff will share information about a variety of programs and opportunities that can benefit your business and your bottom line. They’ll answer questions about your individual needs and connect you with the programs that are most beneficial for you. Sign up today!

RSVP to Heather Howell at or 614-253-4820. The program is free for Conway Center members and $35 for non-members. Family business leaders attending for the first time may attend as our guest.

Save the Date!

Successful Succession Planning Strategies for Family Businesses

February 19 – 7:30-9:00 a.m.

Alumni Hall at Ohio Dominican University

1216 Sunbury Rd., Columbus, OH 43319

Conway Center co-founder, peer group facilitator, and president of Emens & Wolper Law Firm, Bea Wolper, will lead a lively discussion about tried and true succession planning strategies that you can use in your family business. Toni VanHorn, of Sound Communications, a 2014 Conway Center Succession Planning Award Honoree, also will share her succession planning journey. Put this date on your calendar now and watch for more details in the next Monthly Message!

RSVP to Heather Howell at or 614-253-4820. The program is free for Conway Center members and $35 for non-members. Family business leaders attending for the first time may attend as our guest.

Directors’ Insight

For most people, the transition from one year to the next brings up a lot of questions. Did I accomplish my goals last year? What do I want to achieve in the New Year? What’s next for me and my family? What tools or resources do I need to take me and my business to the next level?

Fortunately, many of the resources you need are already available to family businesses at the Conway Center. Your membership gives you and your employees access to nine educational programs, ranging from advisory board and succession planning strategies to communication, marketing, and culture development in 2015.

It also provides you and your staff with opportunities to build relationships and learn from family business peers by attending many of our peer groups. The Business Development, Human Resources, Leadership Development, Online Strategy, Succession Planning, and Women in Family Business Peer Groups are all open to any employee of a Conway Center member business. There’s also a year-long Next Generation Leaders Peer Group, starting each January, for family members who are working toward leadership positions in their companies. Additionally, the CEO Peer Group provides an opportunity for the CEO or President of a family business to interact with peers for a fee that covers their dinner meetings, golf outing, and a holiday party.

We encourage you to try out a new peer group this year or share this opportunity with your staff. It’s a great way to build new relationships while acquiring new skills and knowledge…and a wonderful way to start the New Year!

Dick and Deana

Adverse Weather Plan

If we ever have to cancel an educational program due to inclement weather or unforeseen circumstances, we will notify the media sources listed below and send an e-mail to all of our members. For peer group cancellations, we will notify individuals who have registered and everyone on that peer group distribution list. In addition, all cancellations will be noted on our website calendar.

If you ever wake up and are uncertain whether we will be meeting, please check your email, or turn on your radio or television, and listen for our announcement before you head out the door. If there’s no announcement or no e-mail from us in your inbox, that means we’re waiting for you to join us! Please note – If Ohio Dominican University is closed, and your meeting is on campus, it also is cancelled.

Radio Stations: Sunny 95, 610 WTVN, WNCI 97.9, WOSU 89.7 FM, 97.1 FM.

Television Stations: 4, 6 & 10

Conway Center Peer Groups

To sign up for any of our peer group meetings or to learn more about peer group opportunities contact Executive Coordinator, Jill Hofmans, at or visit for a full schedule of Peer Group programs.

Next Generation Leaders Peer Group
January 13, 2015
Noon – 1:00 p.m.
O’Brien & Associates
47 W. 3rd Avenue, Columbus, 43201
First meeting of the new group!

Leadership Development Peer Group
January 20, 2015
8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
Room 274 – Griffin Center
Ohio Dominican University
Topic: Trust

Business Development Peer Group
January 22, 2015
7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Room 274 – Griffin Center
Ohio Dominican University
Topic: The Answer is Always a Question: How are You Solving Customers’

Online Strategy Peer Group
February 4, 2015
8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
Fathom Columbus
1465 Northwest Blvd., Columbus 43212
Topic: TBD

Women in Family Business Peer Group
February 10, 2015
7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Room 274 – Griffin Center
Ohio Dominican University
Topic: Entering and Reentering the Family Business – Employee or Child?

Succession Planning Peer Group
February 12, 2015
7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Room 274 – Griffin Center
Ohio Dominican University
Topic: Succession of Authority and Relationships – How does the Next Gen take control? How do they take over key customers, suppliers, employees, etc.

CEO Peer Group
February 12, 2015
3:30-7:30 p.m.
4700 Lakehurst Court #200, Dublin, 43016
RSVP required

Welcome New Members

Asguard Financial Solutions LLC
Alisha Mellott, Thomas Mellott
5108 Cashion Dr., Hilliard, OH 43026
(614) 771-0489/

Asguard Financial Solutions provides accounting, audit, and tax services to business, non-profit, and individual clients throughout Ohio and regionally. Asguard was founded in 2013 by President and CEO Alisha Mellott, and her husband Thomas Mellott, CFO. They are the only family members employed by the company so far, but they hope to bring younger generations in once the company is more established. The Mellotts collectively have more than 50 years of experience in multiple aspects of accounting and finance. Asguard Financial Solutions hopes to grow into a full service accounting and tax firm that provides a high level of quality services to help clients meet their needs.

Hoffman Auto Repair LTD
Tony Hoffman, Karen Hoffman, Blake Hoffman
975 West Walnut Street, Canal Winchester, Ohio 43110
(614) 833-0792/

Tony Hoffman started Hoffman Auto Repair LTD in 1981 as a one-man auto repair shop. Over 30 years later, Hoffman Auto Repair continues to provide complete automotive services for all makes and models of foreign and domestic cars. Working out of a single location in Canal Winchester, Hoffman Auto Repair serves customers throughout Central Ohio – including Groveport, Pickerington, Reynoldsburg, Carroll, Ashville, Amanda, and Columbus. Tony’s wife, Karen, has been the company’s bookkeeper since the beginning, and their son, Blake, joined 8 years ago as a shuttle driver. Since then, Blake has moved up to doing light mechanical repairs and services, and now acts as a service writer for the company. The company also employs three Certified Master Technicians, two part-time office administrative assistants, a shuttle driver and a service manager for a total of 10 employees.

Entrepreneur of the Year Awards

Nominations for EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2015 are under way. The awards recognize those entrepreneurial leaders who have implemented new thinking to grow their family business while maintaining the family’s tradition and values and demonstrated how a family business can succeed from generation to generation. Submit a nomination for the Entrepreneur Of The Year 2015 Program and recognize an outstanding leader and his or her family legacy. Family business leaders may nominate themselves or be nominated by peers or other business leaders. Visit for more information and to access the application form. The deadline for nominations is March 6, 2015. Questions? Contact

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Interesting Reading

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Your retirement savings are intended to fund the lifestyle you envision. Consider ways to diversify your retirement assets now to help maximize after-tax returns.

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The necessity of a strong cash flow is irrefutable. You’ve likely read stories about companies that could post a profit but floundered anyway because they simply didn’t have the money on hand to move forward.

‘If It’s Going To Be, Then It’s Up To Me’
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Early in my career I had the pleasure of knowing a very successful businessman who often recited the mantra: “If it’s going to be, then it’s up to me.” While I had heard this line before, it wasn’t until he said it that it actually resonated. Perhaps it was because he actually believed in the power of those words – and he let this simple mantra guide his actions every day…

Family Businesses Must Prepare For Major Shift In Next 20 Years
Some family-owned businesses are finding that it is no longer assumed that children will wish to take over a family business. Thus, if the founders of a…

The Family Office: How To Avoid “Latent Development Syndrome”
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Although, in addition to managing the family’s financial capital, the family office’s mission may be to assist in the development of human capital, we find…

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Why I Decided To Keep The Family Business Alive
At one point in their lives, each of our guests had to choose whether or not they would inherit a family business. The answer didn’t always come quick…

Guest Blog: Putting Family Business In Perspective
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