Business symposium to be held Sept. 29-30

Conference will focus on customer service and tourism marketing

Posted: Thursday, September 16, 2004

Capital City Business Symposium

When: Sept.29 and 30

Where: Centennial Hall

Cost: $115 for two days or $25 per session.

For information or to register: Visit or call 586-1737 Ext. 106.

Local business groups will hold the second annual Capital Business Symposium this month to help small business owners in such areas as customer service and tourism marketing.

"If we can better educate managers and owners what to look for and train their staff, it will trickle down," said Todd Saunders, marketing and outreach specialist at the U.S. Small Business Administration in Juneau.

The symposium will include two days of business-related sessions Sept. 29 and 30 at Centennial Hall. The next day the event's featured speaker, Kent Burnes, will do eight walk-throughs at local businesses, Saunders said. This exercise assists owners with how to improve their businesses, said Saunders, chairman of the organizing committee for the event.

Burnes, of Grass Valley, Calif., is a national speaker with an economic development background. He is an author of several books, including "Secrets to Small Business Success."

Since most of the businesses in Southeast Alaska are small, Burnes' keynote address will focus on the secrets to a successful small business.

Other topics will include low-cost advertising, recruiting and keeping employees, e-commerce strategies and useful tools when marketing to tourists.

The event will also include the Tongass Trade Show, which will feature vendors with products made in Alaska.

About 80 people from Southeast Alaska have registered and Saunders expects another 30 to 40, he said.

• Tara Sidor can be reached at

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