“Give every person more in use value than you take from them in cash value.” – Wallace Wattles (1860-1911)
FARGO—Many CEOs and business owners say it’s lonely at the top, but it doesn’t have to be thanks to a new executive club called the100.
Founder Kurt McSparron said he was motivated to start the100 because most of the business groups in town are geared towards sales professionals hoping for referrals. He saw the need for a group that would support those at the top.
“It’s a peer-to-peer development group where CEOs can support each other, share ideas, find solutions and do business directly with other owners,” he explained.
Membership is by invitation-only and capped at 100 in order to limit competition among members. McSparron said the goal is to represent as many industries as possible.
“What we did was sort of create a business owners’ shopping mall where everything a CEO needs on a daily basis, the group more than likely provides it, from CPAs to attorneys to marketing firms to contractors,” McSparron said. read more
FARGO — Growing your business is not a solo act.
That was a key message at the first ever Executive Expo.
The 100 Inc., an initiative focused on growth in business at all levels, hosted the event to expand business opportunities and build relationships within it.
Keynote speakers and breakout sessions focused on ethics, leadership, and networking – an ongoing issue in the F-M business community.
“We can all work independently and do well alone but if we use the energy of the other business leaders, it’s just that much easier,” says Kurt McSparron of The 100, INC.
McSparron says he founded the group BECAUSE OF the need for collaboration between executives in the F-M community. watch
1. the ability to assess and initiate things independently synonyms: self-motivation · resourcefulness · inventiveness
2. the power or opportunity to act or take charge before others do:
3. an act or strategy intended to resolve a difficulty or improve a situation; a fresh approach to something synonyms: plan · scheme · strategy · stratagem · measure
4. (the initiative)
Policies and Procedures
the100,inc. 1-pg business plan | updated quarterly | Q3 2017
the100, inc. offers CEOs, Presidents, owners and executives valuable networking opportunities and unique leadership development through a limited Membership, non-profit business organization.
Problem Worth Solving
Business leaders tell me that they “need to get out there more”. They struggle to find time for networking and development. They don’t necessarily need to meet more people; they just need to meet the right people. They need to know the owners of companies that provide products and services necessary to own, operate and grow their business. They need to continually sharpen their leadership skills, but they don’t necessarily want to commit to a strict educational schedule. Their time is valuable and they need networking or social outings to have a great potential for return or collaboration.
the100, inc. provides a platform to; promote your business directly to other business owners (the decision-makers); support local entrepreneurs; celebrate the success of fellow job-creators; find commonality with and learn from other experienced business leaders, with no mandatory participation and a minimal investment.
Our Target Market
Our target Member is the private business owner with 5+ years in operation; a desire to grow the organization; a reputation for integrity, humility and good business practices; based and operate within 60 miles of Fargo, ND.
Our area colleagues
We do not have competition, we have business-growth colleagues. the100,inc. is a unique format.
Many area business organizations…
- focus on advocacy and public policy – the100, inc. does not
- are dominated by management, sales and/or “non-owner” personnel – the100, inc. is not
- require meeting attendance and “lead-gathering” or referrals brought in – the100, inc. does not
- focus strictly and intensely on leadership development in a structured format – the100, inc. does not
- have a large financial investment and time requirement – the100, inc. does not
- allow Membership from nearly all applicants – the100,inc. does not
- do not have a full-time Member liaison – the100, inc. does
the100, inc. is working to build collaborative relationships with the Fargo-Moorhead area business organizations and non-profits. We offer a certain number of complimentary Memberships to other business-related groups.
Membership sales: The majority of original Members came from relationships and connections from a previous position of the Founder, Kurt McSparron. New Members since, have come by referral from other Members, word-of-mouth, attendance at our Executive Events and from our website. Membership is currently limited to a total of 200, therefore, sales channels for Membership are limited as well.
Executive Events sales: Our monthly Executive Events series is marketed to all business owners in the Fargo Moorhead area. Our primary sales tools are; Mailchimp email @ 950 contacts; Fargo Inc! business magazine @ 8000 mailings and social media targeting through Facebook and LinkedIn.
We reach our Members daily through our website (the100.work), a private Facebook group, and our Founder’s open calendar (where Members are encouraged to make appts, schedule calls, meetings etc).
We connect weekly with a Wednesday Member Lunch.
Monthly, we host a high-level Q/A discussion at our Executive Events series. These are luncheon or breakfast sessions, where a 3-5 person panel of Members lead a topic discussion with an average of 40 area business owners in attendance.
On a quarterly basis, we invite our Members + spouses and employees to a “no-agenda” Member Social hosted by one of our Members at their location.
- Members invests $1/day for 365 days of Membership
- Gold Members invest $2,500 for 10 years of Membership + Sponsorship benefits
- Executive Event tickets are $50 non-Members and $30 Members
- the100, inc. was formed on August 15, 2015 with Member #1
- officially launched on January 1, 2016 with 70 Members
- Member #100 was added on May 31, 2016
- we’ve enjoyed an 80+% renewal rate in our first year of Membership renewals
the Ag100 was added in the fall of 2016 and currently has 25 Members (seats filled by the fall of 2017)
- we celebrated 1 year of our Executive Events series in April of 2017 (attendance at these events has been as high as 95 and as low as 25, with an average around 40 per event)
- in May 2017, we expanded the vision of the100,inc. to include 200 total Members;
- 100 business products and services owners
- 25 ag-related Members
- 25 trade-industry contractors
- 25 FM-area non-profit Executive Directors
- and 25 people of influence.
Team and Key Roles
- Kurt McSparron | founder and president
- the100,inc Advisory Board
- Todd Fisher | FF Fisher Sales and Leasing
- Barry Dresser | ArtCo Promotional Products
- Josh Christy | Codelation
- Mark Giddings | Giddings and Associates, Ltd
- Guy Nelson | Anvil Design and Manufacturing
- Deb Jaeger | The UPS Stores
- Cindy Cole | Altel Alternative Telecom | GOLD
- Jodee Bock | Bock’s Office Transformational Consulting
- Rachael Boyer | The Coatings Authority | GOLD
- Todd Fuchs | Payroll Express, Inc | GOLD
- David Dietz | Preference Employment Solutions | GOLD
- Zach Paxton | Custom Graphics, Inc | GOLD
- Tim Eissinger | Anne Carlsen Center | GOLD
- Dan Cash | Midwest Radio Fargo Moorhead | GOLD
- Don Arvidson | Express Employment | GOLD
(past board Members)
- Jim Buus | Goldmark Commercial Real Estate, Inc
- Harlan Goerger | H Goerger & Associates dba Ask HG
- Cami Lee | Compliance & Safety Services
- Aaron McWilliams | Spiral Light Candle Co
Partners and Resources (Member contributions)
- Fargo Inc!
- Yarn Productions
- Custom Graphics
- UPS Store
- Avalon Events Center
the top 7 benefits of Membership
1) executive-level networking
- daily activity in our private Facebook Group
- weekly lunches at Porter Creek
- monthly Executive Events at the Avalon
- quarterly Member Socials at Member businesses
- Member to Member introductions
2) leadership development
- discuss best practices and processes
- share experiences and solutions
- develop creativity and innovation
- form collaborations and relationships
- meet the area’s best business coaches
4) business growth and/or traction
- achieving or maintaining well-managed, sustained growth
- no downsizing or unwilling closures by Members
- getting the right people in the right seats
- implementing proven processes
5) increased profits + reduced costs
- additional revenue
- decreased costs
- discovering hidden profits
- saving time
- avoiding the “rabbit-holes” from others’ experiences
6) owner, staff and company wellness
- inspiration +++
- we celebrate success
- we get to know our Members outside of work
- we support our local community
- we seek ways to make an impact
- we look back at the mistakes we’ve made along the way and learn from them as we move forward!
10 11 initiative actions
1) be active in our PRIVATE, MEMBERS-ONLY FACEBOOK GROUP
simply clicking “like” puts your name in front of other Members.
Also, post your own promotions, events or business questions. Remember, only our Members can see our private page. If you’re not on Facebook, give me a call and let me help you get started.
2) contact me everyday, for introductions, ideas or solutions
Those introductions lead to interaction with other Members.
Having a situation?…let me know if i can help (or find someone who can). Obviously, the more that you’re in the front of my mind, the more that i’m promoting you to the other Members.
3) make time for our weekly Wednesday lunch. 12-1pm
usually 10+ Members show up each week and we casually get to know each other. Lunches are almost always at Porter Creek on 45th St S in Fargo. Any change would be posted in our Facebook group.
4) make time for our monthly executive events
Each quarter, we will host a 3hr “Best Practices” breakfast event at the Avalon, a 2hr specific topic luncheon at the Avalon (both events open to the entire F-M business community) and a 2hr Members-only social event (just for fun).
Beginning in February of 2018, our Executive Events will be the 3rd Wednesday of EVERY MONTH.
5) be a panelist/featured speaker at our Executive Events
The panelists are, generally, always our Members. You have a free opportunity to promote yourself, your business and give back to the group. I am looking for panelists for our 2018 line-up.
6) Host a Member Social at your business
I will help with anything that you need and we have help available from Member businesses, but, for the most part, the Member Socials are your company’s event.
Socials are always FREE to Members and from 4-7pm.
7) Host a 5-10 Member presentation event
Do you have a topic that you would like to address with a smaller group of our Members? Let me know your idea and I will be happy to help arrange the event with you.
8) Host an Open House at your business
If you have moved locations or would simply like to celebrate, let’s host an Open House. I’m happy to help.
9) reach out to our Members for consultations
Many of our Members are available for free consulting and all are very interested in seeing each other grow. Give me a call to arrange a meeting or contact the Member directly.
10) share ideas and suggestions to grow our project
Nearly everything that is the100,inc. has come from Member suggestions. Please share your ideas with me and I will bring them to our next Advisory Board meeting.
So far, we have had Members form partnerships, collaborate on projects, secure large accounts, as well as save time and money by taking advantage of this network – thank you!
11) consider a GOLD MEMBER SPONSORSHIP
Like all non-profits, the100,inc. relies on the generosity of its’ Members maintain cash flow.
We have a substantial promotional opportunity available for 10 Members to support our initiative above and beyond standard Membership.
Gold Memberships are an $11,500 value available for a 1-time contribution of $2,500, which includes 10 yrs of Membership. Click here for more information or email email@example.com with questions.
as of 4-01-2018, just 1 Gold Membership is still available
As founder and daily facilitator of the100,inc., i’m given the humble distinction of meeting many of our areas best business leaders. From the most successful, long-standing businesses, to the struggling, striving and growing ventures…i thank you!
As your personal Executive Assistant, i am available for each of our Members, to…
- answer everyday questions
- make time-saving referrals
- make valuable introductions
- illustrate common challenges
- develop profitable ideas
- and discover practical solutions to their business issues
…through our experienced network of owners and serial entrepreneurs. As Members of the100,inc. you have, essentially, hired me for 1 year as a “go-to” resource and a business support officer, to add more time to your schedule and more profit to your bottom line!
THANK YOU…sincerely to each of you and remember…”what helps people, helps business”!
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