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Governor's Small Business Forum: One-day event gives businesses in Brazos Valley resources to grow

Gov. Greg Abbott's office, the Texas Workforce Commission and the Research Valley Partnership co-hosted Thursday one of six Governor's Small Business Forums being held across the state.
Matt Prochaska, president and CEO of the RVP, called the one-day workshop "a resourcing day for our small businesses and to really give them some tools to grow their businesses."
"We're expecting great things as a result of today. A lot of great seeds have been planted," said Prochaska.
The sold-out event featured 29 local, state and federal exhibitors on-site at the Stella Hotel to offer resources to local small businesses. Prochaska said 160 people attended the forum.
"Our overall goal is to support and complement the community in everything we're doing," he said.
The roughly eight-hour forum featured networking, perspectives on business planning and CEO panel sessions on customer service, products and teams.
Michael Treyger, from Abbott's office, said Thursday's forum was one of six statewide; the Office of the Governor is also offering five service provider-facing workshops and 18 service provider grants. Altogether, Treyger said 29 regions will be touched through these small business initiatives.
Treyger said the governor's office chose Brazos Valley for one of the six forums because the RVP provided a "compelling narrative" in their response to the office's call for partnerships.
In a panel focused on local business leaders' perspectives on customer experience, moderator Jose Quintana, president and chairman of AdventGX, asked Dave Fox, president of Blue Baker, for his perspective on creating unique experiences that make for great customer service experiences.
"We're full of recipes in a bakery, but there's really no recipe for positive or memorable service," Fox said, emphasizing the unique experience of customer interaction.
Al Gonzalez, sales and service site director for Wayfair, said the key to great customer service was investing in employees' development and celebrating their victories, suggesting that such a focus on employees will translate to positive customer service.
Brandon Jones, president and CEO of TexAgs, recommended small businesses spend time tailoring strategies for each customer. Jones suggested this will help companies be more authentic and true to their brands.
Prochaska said forums such as Thursday's create a space for new and existing businesses to grow, helping the local economy and community to grow alongside them.
"If we work together as a community, everyone can benefit," he said.