NEO Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year
Joel E. Adelman
founder and CEO
The Advance Group of Companies
In 1998, Joel E. Adelman established The Advance Group of Companies, which is dedicated to providing entrepreneurial staffing companies with the opportunity to flourish and grow. Advance not only provides capital funding to its clients, it also provides various back office services that include information technology, payroll and tax, and recruiting/search software.
Based on his experience and knowledge, Adelman, who is founder and CEO, intended to establish a business selling consumer products. However, his exposure to payroll services at a national staffing convention led him to uncover an underserved market. This fueled Adelman’s passion, and he became determined to create a new solution for the staffing industry.
Adelman combined several different services into one business, developing a company with few direct competitors. Advance offers entrepreneurs all-inclusive services and support.
The company recently introduced a new service, Workforce Solutions, which matches the demand and supply of labor. Adelman once again identified a need in the market and discovered a manner in which to capitalize on it, bringing together small and midsize staffing firms and introducing them to Fortune 500 consumers in need of their services.
As the largest independent provider of funding and leading provider of solutions for the temporary staffing industry, Advance has grown steadily. As to be expected, the company’s revenue declined during the recession. However, Adelman’s foresight and management decisions allowed the company to enhance its earning potential by expanding its service offerings.
When the economy began to improve and the demand for staffing escalated, Advance grew at 25 percent. Advance has maintained that 25 percent growth rate for the past three years and forecasts that it will continue to grow at this rate.
Adelman’s one-of-a-kind business offers fellow entrepreneurs an opportunity to realize their aspirations via technological and monetary support. As a result of his innovative and unique offerings, the supply of labor better matches the demand.
How to reach: The Advance Group of Companies, www.advancepayroll.us
Real Estate & Hospitality
Doug Bauer, Tom Mitchell and Mike Grubbs are home building industry veterans with more than 60 years of combined experience. That is why, when the industry was in the depth of recession in 2009, they knew it was time to make a bold move.
They started TRI Pointe Homes, a next-generation homebuilder focused on the design, construction and sale of innovative single-family detached and attached homes in planned communities in major metropolitan areas in the West. The company lives by three words — think, renew and inspire.
Friends, family and colleagues thought they were crazy to start a new home building company when many of the industry giants were going under, but they knew that this was an industry of cycles, and that when it sank to the bottom, it would be followed by an upswing. And sure enough, four years later, the company they built is not only profitable, but also the focus of a successful IPO. TRI Pointe Homes became the first homebuilding company to go public since 2004.
Bauer, who is CEO, Mitchell, who is CFO, and Grubbs, who is COO, like to set very high goals for themselves. Their successful collaboration is based on their shared discipline and focus, and their unshakable belief that they could succeed. Part of their success is due to being nimble in their decision-making. They analyze the facts, make a decision and go. They may not be right every time, but they don’t waste time sitting around and questioning decisions.
Despite all the achievements the three partners and their company have seen, they still strive to do more; they believe success is a continuum. They are looking to their next mountain. The company currently operates in Northern and Southern California and Denver. TRI is looking to grow in its current markets, and, if market conditions warrant, possibly expand to select markets in Texas, Phoenix, Nevada and the Northwest.
How to reach: TRI Pointe Homes, www.tripointehomes.com
Real Estate & Hospitality
Alan J. Fuerstman began to show his natural aptitude for the hospitality industry at the young age of 17. He was still in high school and had started to work part time as a bellman at a Marriott Hotel in New Jersey. It was his attention to detail, ability to serve guests and willingness to always lend a hand that was quickly noticed by management.
The result was an offer to join Marriott’s management team after Fuerstman graduated from Gettysburg College. He quickly rose through the ranks at a number of luxury hotels before being recruited by Steve Wynn to open the prestigious Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas.
Through all this, Fuerstman gained experience and put himself in position to pursue a personal vision he had been thinking about. He wanted to create something new, a small ultra-luxury hotel that prided itself on gracious hospitality and attention to service and detail without the stereotypical pretentiousness of a five-star hotel.
As founder and CEO of Montage Hotels & Resorts, Fuerstman has been involved in all aspects of the company’s growth. He didn’t have brand awareness, but he did have a strong sales and marketing vision that could focus on the core differentiators that Fuerstman was confident would win over prospective guests.
And while he has taken a hands-on approach to every aspect of Montage Hotels & Resorts’ growth, Fuerstman never fails to demonstrate the importance of his people and the value that they bring to the culture and the company.
He doesn’t focus on awards and doesn’t want his employees to feel pressured to do something that isn’t possible. His attitude is to “focus on your own backyard first,” believing that consistent effort and dedication to your job will bring you all the recognition you and your business deserve.
How to reach: Montage Hotels & Resorts, www.montagehotels.com
From president of a $1.4 billion pharmaceutical operation to pit master, John Rivers stepped out of 20 years in corporate America to pursue his dream of opening a traditional Texas smokehouse in Florida as a platform to introduce his 18-hour, slow-smoked Angus brisket in what was otherwise considered a pork-dominated market.
He had spent two decades perfecting his recipe for brisket in his back yard. However, it was a heartfelt call in 2004 to raise funds to help offset the overwhelming cost of cancer treatment for a 6-year-old girl that brought Rivers’ passion to a new level.
Moved by the family’s story, Rivers organized a barbecue fundraiser that resulted in more than 500 attendees and the launch of what he dubbed his “barbecue ministry.” For the next five years, Rivers fired-up the smoker anytime a church, family, school or charity was in need of help.
Working from his garage, Rivers’ ministry quickly grew in popularity, prompting the bottling of his 4R signature barbecue sauce and later a line of signature rubs. The ultimate leap of faith was in October 2009 when Rivers opened the first of three 4 Rivers Smokehouses in Winter Park, Fla.
Since opening his restaurants, Rivers, who is chef and CEO, does not focus on the top line or bottom line growth. Rather, he focuses on his employees’ and customers’ experiences. He has found that spending time on employees and customers, and of course, his product, helps drive his growth.
In his first year in business, Rivers received numerous accolades from the media, including “Best Barbecue” by Florida Travel + Life magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, Orlando magazine, Orlando Business Journal and Orlando Weekly; “Best Sandwich” by Orlando magazine and two Silver Spoon Awards from Orlando Home & Leisure.
Rivers was most recently featured in Cigar Aficionado, Restaurant Business, Cooking with Paula Dean and was a recipient of Cooking Light’s 2012 Taste Test Awards.
How to reach: 4R Restaurant Group, www.4rsmokehouse.com
Financial-services firm Edward Jones has been ranked No. 8 on Fortune magazine's "100 Best Companies to Work For 2013" list in its 14th appearance on the prestigious list, according to David Gottlieb of Pepper Pike.
Edward Jones' 14 Fortune rankings also include top 10 finishes for 10 years and consecutive No. 1 rankings in 2002 and 2003 and consecutive No. 2 rankings in 2009 and 2010.
Currently, Edward Jones has 4,630 positions available throughout the country, mostly for financial adviser and branch office administrator. Each Edward Jones branch office includes one financial adviser and one branch office administrator who work one-on-one with clients in the communities where those clients live.
To pick the 100 Best Companies to Work For, Fortune partners with the Great Place to Work Institute to conduct the most extensive employee survey in corporate America. Two-thirds of a company's score is based on the results of the institute's Trust Index survey, which is sent to a random sample of employees from each company. The survey asks questions related to their attitudes about management's credibility, job satisfaction, and camaraderie.
The other third of the scoring is based on the company's responses to the institute's Culture Audit, which includes detailed questions about pay and benefit programs and a series of open-ended questions about hiring practices, internal communications, training, recognition programs and diversity efforts.
Edward Jones provides financial services for individual investors in the United States and, through its affiliate, in Canada. The firm's 12,000-plus financial advisers work directly with nearly 7 million clients to understand their personal goals.
In January 2013, for the 14th year, Edward Jones was named one of the best companies to work for by Fortune Mmagazine in its annual listing. The firm ranked No. 8 overall. These 14 rankings include 10 top-10 finishes, consecutive No. 1 rankings in 2002 and 2003, and consecutive No. 2 rankings in 2009 and 2010. Fortune and Time Inc. are not affiliated with and do not endorse products or services of Edward Jones.
All you need to do is look around to realize that the world is changing at a pace faster than anyone could have imagined. Every day, competition increases and the rules of engagement are rewritten. Keeping up with the Joneses is no longer enough to ensure survival.
Those manufacturers that understand how to remain in a state of constant adaptation have learned that this may be the only true key to thriving in the new economic realities of the global economy.
In the links below, we highlight 17 manufacturers that have taken steps to get ahead of change and forge their own paths. These award winners, honorable mentions and panelists for the 2013 Evolution of Manufacturing Conference, presented by Cuyahoga Community College, are truly setting the pace for others in this region. And we even identified a handful of companies that were engaged in initiatives “of note” to tell you about.
The conference is designed to recognize and showcase manufacturers and technology companies that have adapted to competition in a global economy through improved operations, new technologies, products or services. The 2013 program focuses on the continued evolution to advanced manufacturing with a focus on breakthrough concepts, transforming old-line manufacturers into high-tech manufacturers and what it takes to remain competitive and relevant in a new manufacturing age.
This year marks the 14th year of this annual event. This year’s honorees are culled from an extensive nomination and selection process which began in early fall and ended in early December.
Congratulations to the honorees and honorable mentions.
Click the links below to read the individual profiles for all of this year's honorees.
2013 Evolution of Manufacturing - Panalists
Tom Salpietra, president and COO, EYE Lighting International
Eric Lofquist, president and CEO, Magnus International Group
Suzy Remer, owner and CEO, Midwest Box Co.
2013 Evolution of Manufacturing - Winners
- ArtiFlex Manufacturing LLC
- R.W. Beckett Corp.
- H.C. Starck Inc.
- RBB Systems
- Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics
- Superior Products LLC
- Visual Marking Systems Inc.
- Voss Industries Inc.
2013 Evolution of Manufacturing - Honorable Mentions
2013 Evolution of Manufacturing - Manufactures "Of Note"
2013 Evolution of Manufacturing - Sponsors
Pillar Awards Nonprofit Board Executive of the Year Finalist
immediate past chairman
Columbus College of Art & Design
www.ccad.edu | (614) 224-9101
Michael Fiorile is a big thinker and persuaded the Columbus College of Art & Design’s entire board and senior leadership to think big, too. He is a man who is not satisfied by doing just “good enough.” He leads to achieve more and exceed past expectations.
Fiorile has devoted almost nine years of service to the CCAD board of trustees. He was elected to the board in November 2003. He served as board vice chair from
2008 to 2010 and as board chair from 2010 to 2012. He served on the board’s executive and governance committees from 2008 to 2012 and served on the executive committee until this year.
His most recent appointment expired in June 2012, but he agreed to serve one additional year as an ex officio member.
Throughout Fiorile’s board service, he has been tremendously generous himself, as well as assisting with corporate gifts and opening doors to additional private donors. The personal philanthropy of Fiorile and his wife, Karen, has placed them in the top tier of CCAD donors, and his advocacy on the college’s behalf has played an important role in securing leadership gifts.
In his final year as board chair, he was instrumental in increasing participation in board giving from 74 to 100 percent and increasing the average board gift by more than 200 percent.
In addition, the board and senior leadership alike appreciated how Fiorile kept the board conversation at the strategic level — avoiding micromanagement while keeping everyone’s eyes on collective goals.
In today’s regulatory environment, banks are no longer lending based on collateral; they are focusing more on business history, the owners, their future plans and how they’ll repay the loan.
“A business plan is an excellent way to tell bankers about the story behind the numbers and let them know you have a good handle on the future of your business,” says Betty Uribe, executive vice president for California Bank & Trust.
Smart Business spoke with Uribe about how to develop a business plan to increase your chances of obtaining a business loan.
Why are business plans important?
When presenting a loan package to a lender, an organized, well-thought-out business plan can make the difference between getting and not getting the loan.
A business plan will show the lender if the business has a chance of making a profit and in what time frame. It also provides a well-thought-out estimate of how much the business needs to grow and defines the market, customers and the percentage of the market the business plans to reach, providing a clear revenue estimate. Importantly, a business plan can convince the lender to fund your business and show them potential issues and how they’ll be addressed.
What are the steps involved in creating a good business plan?
Start with an outline and fill in the blanks as you learn more about the process. Your plan should be only as big as necessary for your firm to run smoothly. In fact, the outline alone may suffice, particularly if you are not submitting the plan in a package to obtain financing.
Many seasoned entrepreneurs calculate a break-even analysis to predict future viability in their respective fields. This is a formula based on the relationship between revenue, fixed costs, variable costs and profit. The analysis can show you how much money you must bring in to stay solvent.
Another preliminary tool is a feasibility plan, a basic document that features a summary, mission statement, market analysis and required success factors. It also might include an initial cost analysis addressing pricing and potential expenses. This can help you determine whether starting a business can work for you.
What resources are available to help?
An abundance of user-friendly business planning software is available that is designed to help strategize, sort and calculate related financial data.
Also, agencies like the Small Business Administration and SCORE, the Service Corp of Retired Executives, offer detailed information on developing a solid plan.
How do you get started?
Most experts outline 10 key components for a basic business plan. Key components include:
• Cover sheet
• Table of contents
• Executive summary
• Company description
• Product or service description
• Market analysis
• Strategy and implementation
• Management team
• Financial analysis
What should a business owner do with the business plan once it’s written?
Start by recording overall business or long-term goals on a spreadsheet, setting the bar high enough to grow. Make sure your goals are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound (SMART). They must be easily identified, quantified and understood by you and your management team or you won’t know when you reach them. Also, set quarterly, monthly, weekly and daily objectives, then record your progress but don’t share or discuss goals with negative individuals who might impede progress. Lastly, keep asking yourself, ‘Does this decision take me closer to my goal?’
Growing a business takes commitment and systematic planning. Educate yourself. The more you learn about your industry, competitors, finances and time management, the greater your chances of success.
Betty Uribe is executive vice president at California Bank & Trust.
For a full scope of tools and information through to help businesses get started, visit www.calbanktrust.com/team. Another valuable source of information for business owners is at www.calbank trust.sbresources.com.
Insights Banking & Finance is brought to you by California Bank & Trust
The employees at Ashton Staffing Inc. regard every vacant position presented to them as an opportunity to bring the right people together. Headed by President and CEO Melissa Hulsey, Ashton has a customer service philosophy that instructs its associates to treat every job as if they were placing their best friend at their parents’ company.
Ashton employees often tell potential clients that their firm will probably not be the cheapest staffing option they will find and that if they are shopping for price only, Ashton is not the service they should partner with.
Ashton’s commitment to quality is demonstrated by the many professional certifications it holds. One of the most important is the Workers’ Compensation Risk Certification. The requirements for obtaining WRC include having strict application and screening protocols, conducting mandatory drug and background checks for all associates, and allowing a third party to audit all employee files for compliance once a year. A minimum score of 85 percent must be achieved to obtain and maintain the certification.
Customer retention is important to Ashton, and one way the company rewards its customers is by contributing to things that are important to those clients: sponsoring baseball teams, contributing prizes to special events, making charitable donations in their name. In so doing, Ashton has retained customers well. The company has many clients with more than 10 years’ tenure.
“For more than 10 years, Ashton Staffing has been the first choice for our staffing needs,” says David Agan, senior accounting and finance manager with KCMA Corp. in Kennesaw, Ga. “Their courteous professionals are attentive and always provide the proper person to meet our requirements. No matter what the opening, Ashton has been able to assist us with qualified candidates. We have enjoyed working with Ashton and have been very pleased with the results.”
How to reach: Ashton Staffing Inc., (770) 419-1776 or www.ashtonstaffing.com
Putting it succinctly, Junior Achievement’s mission is to help give students — who are inspired to be the young entrepreneurs of tomorrow — a taste of the business world. Since 1919, JA has been educating students about entrepreneurship with passion and integrity. It is the world’s largest organization devoted to that purpose.
One of the keys to JA’s success is the hands-on programs that help prepare young people to operate their own business. Many alumni of the program have cited their experience in JA as the foundation for their interest in being self-employed.
For instance, an inductee into a local chapter’s Hall of Fame recalled that when he was 13, he wanted to be an astronomer. Then, with five friends, he got into Junior Achievement and created a little company to market a useful product.
“We made money in the end,” he says. “After three or four months, we distributed $40 to each person of the company. Forty bucks doesn’t sound a lot today, but that was in 1955. At any rate, I decided, ‘Hey, I’d better go into business because I can’t make any money as an astronomer.’ That’s when I decided to go into business.”
Today, he owns a multimillion-dollar successful company.
JA Worldwide reaches more than 9 million students each year in 380,000 classrooms as well as after-school sites. There are 330,000 classroom volunteers globally who come from a wide range of backgrounds: retirees, businesspeople, college students and parents.
Local chapters each year honor distinguished business leaders who have acted as role models for students.
This year’s honorees for Junior Achievement of Central Ohio include Jim Budros, chairman of the board of Budros, Ruhlin & Roe Inc., the largest independent wealth management firm in central Ohio; Chuck Kegler, director with Kegler Brown Hill & Ritter LPA and a member of the firm since 1968; and Dwight Smith, founder and CEO of Sophisticated Systems Inc., a business technology partner in the Columbus region, and co-founder with his wife Reneé of the Thanks Be to God Foundation to support entrepreneurship and children worldwide.
They join the more than 80 business leaders inducted into the Junior Achievement of Central Ohio Hall of Fame in the past 25 years who give inspiration and purpose to young people to succeed in a global economy.