Event Depot opening at The Stadium District

We are so excited to announce that Event Depot is opening in Downtown Lansing at The Stadium District. The location is centrally located and convenient for all of our clients to stop in to say hello. We’re thrilled to be directly across from Oldsmobile Stadium, 1 block from Lansing Center, and a stone’s throw from our Capital building. The store will be opening in early December, so watch for news about a Grand Opening.


Genworth Financial Long Term Care

Bill Mason

Bill Mason

Bill Mason

Bill Mason specializes in long term care insurance in Michigan and represents Genworth Life Insurance Company. He is known for his expertise and straightforward approach to helping people understand the practical and affordable solutions for their long term care needs. He can assist you in designing an appropriate plan for you and your family.

Bill has resided in the Greater Lansing Area since 1969. He is a graduate of Michigan State University with a degree in Communication Arts. He is available to give public seminars, presentations and group talks on the issues involving long term care in America.

Throughout his eight year career with Genworth Financial, Bill has maintained active involvement in a number of organizations. He has been a board member of the MSU Mid-Michigan Alumni Association and the Ingham County Library. Currently Bill is an officer in the Michigan Travelers Protective Association, a Board Member with Impression Five Science Center in Lansing, a volunteer at MSU with fund raisers and a member of the Michigan Business Development Network.


ICBA Debunks Deposit Insurance Myths

Here’s a post contributed by John Morris, Commercial Loan Officer at Dart Bank.

ICBA Debunks Deposit Insurance Myths

Washington, D.C. (July 17, 2008) The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) is challenging unfounded concerns raised about the safety of bank deposits. Federal deposit insurance guarantees your deposits are safe in every financial institution insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, including community banks. Don’t believe the hype. Get the facts.

Myth: Your money is safer in big banks.
Fact: No one has ever lost a penny of FDIC-insured deposits held in community banks. The FDIC insures deposits up to $100,000 per depositor and $250,000 for certain retirement accounts. If you have more than $100,000 at a community bank, you can still be fully insured if your accounts meet certain requirements. For example, accounts owned by a single person are separately insured from joint accounts or retirement accounts owned by that person. The FDIC’s Electronic Deposit Insurance Estimator can determine your coverage.

Community banks focus on the needs of local families, businesses and farmers, and their top executives are generally available on site to answer your questions directly and make timely decisions. Many of the nation’s largest banks are structured to serve large corporations and have CEOs headquartered in office suites, not local banks.

Myth: Your money is stored in a vault at the bank.
Fact: Community bank deposits are reinvested in your local economy.
Your money on deposit will be used to make loans in the community that help your neighbors start a nearby business, purchase a home, or send a son or daughter to college. Continuing to hold deposits in community banks ensures the neighborhoods where you live and work will continue to grow and thrive.

Myth: Community banks are undercapitalized.
Fact: The vast majority of our nation’s banks, especially community banks, are strong, safe and stable.
Community bankers are common sense lenders that don’t engage in high-risk activities. Instead, they stick to the longstanding fundamentals of responsible banking, and always seek to serve the long-term interests of their customers and communities.

Myth: The FDIC takeover of IndyMac Bancorp means my bank is at risk.
Fact: IndyMac Bancorp was taken over because, in part, depositors became fearful and attempted to close their accounts at once, destabilizing the bank.
The overwhelming majority of the nation’s banks are safe and well capitalized. As stated by FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair, IndyMac is only one of nearly 8,500 depository institutions operating in the United States and represents just 0.2 percent of banking-industry assets. There is little chance your bank will be taken over by the FDIC. And if that does happen, you will continue to have virtually uninterrupted access to your insured deposits.

Myth: Community banks are involved in problems with subprime mortgage lending.
Fact: Community banks are common-sense lenders that have avoided subprime lending.
There is no mortgage-lending crisis for community banks because they are well-run, highly capitalized, tightly regulated and more risk-averse than big banks. Community banks have money to lend homeowners for new purchases and to refinance existing mortgages. In spite of talk of a credit crunch, community banks are open for business.

For more information on the safety of community bank deposits, visit ICBA’s Web site.

Do You Have the Strength to Make a Difference?

The Muscle Team Gala is a high-profile social event to benefit the families served by the Muscular Dystrophy Association. The concept of Muscle Team is to gather top athletes and pair them with a MDA Buddy, a local child living with neuromuscular disease. At Muscle Team 2008, participants get the chance to meet and greet the Muscle Team coaches, players, their buddies and other celebrities and top business executives. The evening consists of fun events, interactive entertainment, a variety of food stations and is highlighted by extensive media coverage, live and silent auctions and unique sports memorabilia. The 6th Annual Muscle Team Gala will be held on Wednesday, May 21St at Eagle Eye Golf Club.

The Muscle Team Gala will prove to be an incredibly valuable fundraiser for MDA. All of the net proceeds from the event will be providing help .and hope to children and adults in Mid-Michigan affected by any of the 43 neuromuscular diseases covered by the MDA program, including Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and ALS, more commonly referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

The Muscle Team Gala is a fabulous way to reach 400 premiere Mid-Michigan business members while making a contribution to a great cause. We hope that you’ll join us by making a donation to our silent or live auction.. In return for your generosity, we will recognize your establishment in the program and on the bid sheet corresponding to your item.

Donations can be sent to:                          

                                                                 Muscle Team 2008 c/o MDA

2133 University Park Dr. Ste #400

Okemos, MI 48864
(517) 706-0348

Please fill out the Auction form with your donation information and return to our office. We will also be happy to pick up any items, please feel free to call me at the number listed above to arrange a pick up time or if you have any questions. Tickets to the event are available for purchase. Thank you for your consideration, and we hope you’ll join us by supporting this phenomenal event!


Kim Church

District Director

MBDN Forms

If you are interested in learning more about our  structure, here’s a copy of our meeting agenda:

Meeting Agenda

If you are interested in joining our group, here’s the registration form:

MBDN Membership Form

An easy rule for 2008: The simple gets done; complexity kills

This is an article from the e-newsletter, Succeeding In Business by Eric Albertson-

Three to four minutes for a successful 2008


If you can give me two or three minutes today, I will give you some insights that will help you make more, and give you the option to work less. Read on if this interests you.


What is Occam’s Razor?


“All other things being equal, the simplest solution is usually best.” This is also known as Occam’s (sometimes spelled “Ockham’s”) Razor, a maxim from a 14th century English logician named William of Ockham. This razor is still sharp after more than 700 years of steady use.


So why did I bother with the other 80 percent? 


The 80/20 rule is also known as the Pareto Principle. The rule suggests that 80 percent of your results come from 20 percent of your activities. For me it seems that it is usually the 95/5 rule. So why do we bother with the other 80 percent?


The simple gets done


The bonus of the two rules above is that the simple things get done, while the complex ones are ignored. At least, by me and most folks I know. In all this, action is the key. The only difference between the top and bottom performers is (on average, and in my observation), the action taken or not taken.


Action + now = WOW


Pick the best few and consider making a choice to take action now.


Start, stop & how


With the above in mind, consider taking five minutes and asking yourself the following three question:


1.  What did I accomplish last year? Name the top 3 things.


2.  What disappointed last year? Name the top 3 things.


3.  What am I going to do differently this year? Name up to 3 things.





A simple challenge for 2008


If you can take action on just two or three of the items below, I’ll bet your 2008 will be dramatically wealthier, healthier and happier than your 2007 was, no matter what the economy does.


1. Get your goals written and look at them twice a day, every day, for the rest of the year. See below:


2. Build and maintain a target list of ideal customers you want to do business with.


3. Get your elevator speech down and know exactly what you want to say after your prospects say, “Tell me more.” 


4. Get clear on a simple sales process that reliably yields closed sales.


5. Become clear on how to get the second sale over and over again with your customers; it’s really the only one that matters.


6. Understand how to get paid what you and your offering are worth.


7. Understand how to manage your activities to achieve your goals.


8. Have fun doing the above. This is actually the most important of all. If you aren’t having fun, you won’t stay with it. Pay close attention to this one.


After all, it’s the only life you have by my observation.



As you read this newsletter in 2008, I’ll help you on each of the eight items above. Yes, even the fun part, this year.


Remember the 80/20 rule 


If you just nailed two or three of the above, I suspect you would have a banner year. Do them all, and I suspect you will be on top of the world. 


My friend, Bob Proctor, of The Secret 


Many years ago my friend, Bob Proctor, got married. His new wife sold insurance. Bob is a famous productivity guru and all-around great guy. Bob married for love; his wife was not doing well in the insurance business, as I recall, when they married.


Just try this one thing, Honey


The new Mrs. Proctor asked Bob, “How can I be more successful, Mr. Guru?” Bob said, “Just be in front of one new prospect every day, by 10 A.M., and ask that prospect to buy, no matter what.” She said, “Is that all?” Bob said, “That’s it.”




Sounds like something simple that could actually be done.


Simple execution = WOW


The new Mrs. Proctor’s sales increased more than 10 times in the next 12 months, because she followed these simple instructions, according to what Bob told me.


Now the ball is in your court


So what are the one to three simple things you will do differently this year that could help you put the 80/20 rule to work in your life? 


Remember; the simple gets done while complexity kills. Keep it simple and get it done!


To your success in 2008.

“Reprinted with permission from Eric Albertson’s SucceedingInBusiness.com Newsletter.(Copyright, 1998-2007, Eric Albertson, SucceedingInBusiness.com.)”

Lansing (Re) Development

Have you been to downtown Lansing recently? In the midst of growing foreclosures & higher unemployment around the state, Lansing is in the middle of major changes to it’s skyline.  Last night, Mayor Virg Benero outlined some new tax incentives to homeowners and investors for home improvements.  (read the text of his State of the City hereThis proposal will offer a 50% break on the increased taxes resulting from qualified improvements to your primary residence or improvements to an old, abandoned house to an owner-occupied home.  More details will follow when the plan is worked out by the mayor. But, even more exciting is the number of new housing & retail developments that are going on downtown.  Here is a brief list of the projects:Stadium Lofts:Stadium District

  • In the heart of the new Stadium District, across the street from Oldsmobile Park
  • Mixed commercial (1st floor) and residential
  • Opening Spring of 2008
  • Designated as a Neighborhood Enterprise Zone (NEZ)
  • Received designation as one of 23 “Cool Cities” by the State of Michigan

Capitol Club Tower:

  • Start Construction in Spring 2008Capitol Club Towers
  • 20 story high rise condominiums
  • Will become the 2nd tallest building in downtown Lansing
  • Downtown river frontage
  • Private balconies
  • Tax-Free Living (no property tax, no city income tax, not state income tax plus 1.5% interest rate reduction)
  • Fine dining & health facilities

Kalamazoo Street Gateway Center:

  • LEED CertifiedLansing Gateway
  • Energy Efficient
  • Green Roof
  • Retail & Residential
  • 32 one and two bedroom apartments
  • 10 Condos
  • Near the River Trail
  • Near the Stadium District

Ballpark North:Ball Park North

  • Overlooks left field at the Lugnuts stadium
  • 138,000 sq. ft. of commercial and residential space
  • Covered and surface parking
  • 6 stories of Condos and apartments

City Market Renovations:Market Place

  • 3 acre site along the Grand River facing the new Accident Fund Building World headquarters
  • 140,000 Sq. Ft. of buildings
  • 2 four story residential buildings with a total of 90 to 120 mixed condos and apartments
  • 10,000 sq. ft. riverfront restaurant

Motor Wheel Lofts:

  • LEED Certified
  • Still some available units
  • 119 loft style condos
  • 15 different floor plans ranging from 590 to 3,000 sq. ft.
  • Underground parking
  • Exercise Room

The Arbaugh:

  • Corner of Washington & Kalamazoo
  • Near Cooley Law School
  • 48 residential apartment units
  • 20,000 sq. ft. of commercial space 
  • High ceilings
  • Underground parking
  • Washer & Dryer in unit

Downtown Lansing Map

View Larger MapPhotos and sources of information from the City Pulse, the Gillespie group.All of this development and new construction will bring some short term construction jobs but more importantly will attract more companies to look at downtown Lansing for growth and partnership.  The Lansing Business Monthly has some really good articles on the developments, click here for morethe Cashflow Coach