Twenty NM small business leaders begin Emerging Leaders program
Chris Weil brought a copy of his original business plan.
"In this, I've developed the roadmap of what I've wanted to do with my company," Weil said. "It was in the back of my head: what I wanted to do, where I wanted to go. ... We knew we were working, but we didn't know where we were working toward."
On Wednesday, 20 local small business leaders with similar dreams to Weil's listened to him speak as the Small Business Administration's Emerging Leaders program at WESST Enterprise Center kicked off.
Weil said writing down his roadmap on paper has transformed his business, Weil Construction Inc., and was one of many lessons he learned in the course. Since his graduation from the program in 2016, his business has expanded to Colorado Springs, Colorado; Fort Worth, Texas; and San Antonio.
Weil Construction Inc. was named the 2018 National Small Business Prime Contractor of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration earlier this month. Weil was awarded the New Mexico SBA Entrepreneurial Success Award in 2017 for growing to over $10 million in revenue.
From April to October, the 20 business leaders will typically meet every other week at the Better Business Bureau Serving New Mexico and Southwest Colorado office in Albuquerque. By graduation time, they will learn how to lead and manage resources at their disposal and growth that follows. Marvis Aragon, owner of Marvis Aragon & Associates, will be the course instructor. He will also teach the new Las Cruces Emerging Leaders program on Mondays.
While each of the new students in the course will follow different pathways outside the class, they share common goals of learning and growing.
Jasmine Baillio, who owns both What Goes Around … A Consignment Boutique locations in Albuquerque, has aspirations of opening another store or acquiring another one in town. Baillio said she feels a crash course on managing the ins and outs of steady growth is perfect for her.
"This just seems really tailored for me," she said. "This is part of trying to be the very best we can be."
Since she received her master's degree from the University of New Mexico, Christina Tewa wanted to continue her education. After recently being named senior vice president of Keres Consulting, Tewa wanted a refresher on business practices and learn how to keep her company on an upward trend. In February, Keres announced it will move its headquarters to Albuquerque's Uptown area.
"I really want to make sure that we're increasing sales and doing everything we can to keep our company profitable," Tewa said. "I'm hoping that going through this program will help me tie it all together and just be a better leader for our companies and for our employees."
Weil's advice for the 20 small business executives was to put in the extra time outside of work to maximize the output of the what the course offers.
"You're ready to grow," Aragon told his 20 new students. "So let's grow."
Here is the Class of 2018 for the Albuquerque SBA Emerging Leaders Program:
Samia Apodaca – Consolidated Builders of NM – Albuquerque
Jasmine Baillio – What Goes Around …A Consignment Boutique – Albuquerque
Tim Borror – Sierra Hacienda Builders – Albuquerque
Kyle Burns – The Rikoon Group – Santa Fe
Jay English – Elevate: Performance Health Wellness – Albuquerque
Joshua Fenlason – Cypress Communication Systems – Corrales
Mya Kass – Santa Fe Oxygen and Healing Bar – Santa Fe
Melania Kirwin – MGP Mechanical – Albuquerque
Loretta Lopez – Rymarc Construction – Santa Rosa
Vincent Martinez – Vital Consulting Group – Albuquerque
Alex Matcham – Intor – Socorro
Matt McDanel – Ski Tech – Santa Fe
Erin Muffoletto – Muffoletto Government Relations – Albuquerque
Augustine Seymour Jr. – Velocity Build – Albuquerque
Kathy Steen – Pop-A-Lock of Albuquerque – Albuquerque
Christopher Sweetin – 3D Security Training Solutions – Albuquerque
Ryan Swinney – Critter Control – Eco Friendly Solutions – Albuquerque
Christina Tewa – Keres Consulting – Albuquerque
Kendra West – Southwest Abatement – Albuquerque
Jay Willmon –Just Click Printing – Farmington