This past Saturday was the City of Chicago’s Small Business Development Center Expo at the South Shore Cultural Center. The expo consisted of about 40 exhibitors that included anything from financial information, to tax and legal clinics, to zoning information. One valuable service provided was free headshot by a professional photographer which include services by a hair and make-up artist.
The Expo offered several free workshops. The Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC) offered a workshop on developing a business plan. Fifth Third Bank and ACCION presented information for accessing capital, and Blue Top Marketing offered a workshop on Facebook marketing. I wanted to attend all of them, but unfortunately the workshops occurred simultaneously.
Maya-Camille Broussard, founder of Justice of Pies, was the guest speaker. Maya-Camille started Justice of Pies in honor of her late father. Her father was a self-proclaimed “Pie Master”, in addition to a criminal defense attorney. Maya-Camille wanted to recognize her father’s passion for baking and, professionally, his hard work & belief that everyone deserves a second chance.
Maya-Camille presentation focused on lesson’s learned during her journey creating Justice of Pies. I walked away learning so much, I really wished I would have taken notes or recorded the presentation. The main take-aways for me was:
- Keep your product or services simple
- Your product or services should have an emotional connection to its customers
- Hire experts in areas like branding and logo design
- Get paid for your time, services and products
Maybe one day I will utilize all these great local resources in Chicago, and apply Maya-Camille lessons to my own business. You never know what the future will bring. One thing for sure, I will picking up a pie at Whole Foods!