Business Center announces programs

AMHERST The UMass Family Business Center is a learning community that helps:

Strategize transitions to succeeding generation;

Professionalize via improved governance structures;

Trade on strengths and inoculate from liabilities;

and treats your business like a business and your family like a family.

Our website, , includes our newsletter and:

"Related Matters;"

the advice column "Dear Ira: Fresh Air and Cold Water for the Perplexed Business Family;"

and information about family business plays authored by program director, Ira Bryck.


Attend our "All You Can Eat/All You Can Learn" dinner forums to see how much better your family business life could be. Contact Ira Bryck for more info. Here's our next 2 events:

An evening with author Jason Jennings on June 28 from 5 to 8:30 p.m. at the Delaney House in Holyoke.

Jennings teaches companies how to increase productivity for use as a competitive tool. With his research team of recent Princeton and Stanford grads, Jennings describes the handful of organizations that seem to defy reality with unbelievably impressive profits, productivity and employee loyalty, often accomplished more with common sense and truth telling than by adding employees or other overhead.

By examining 10 great examples (out of 4000 companies he studied), Jennings will describe how to achieve similar results as companies that have increased sales 300 percent without increasing head count, become 10 times more efficient, and keep track of every penny, and will lay out their secrets to success in clear, easy-to-follow steps.

Author Ross Shafer on "Nobody Moved Your Cheese: How to to Ignore the Experts and Trust Your Gut." Sept, 20 from 5 to 8:30 p.m. at the Calrion Hotel, Northampton.

You will be lucky to hear tonight's speaker, Ross Shafer, champion of workplace accountability and responsibility. Ross brilliantly skewers the advice of so called "success experts" of our culture, daring to expose just how irrelevant much of their preaching is to your life.

Challenging some of our most revered cultural icons, Ross will both shock and empower you with his message, including such topics as "Nobody Moved Your Cheese!," "Sweat the Small Stuff...Or Die!," "Goal Setting Is Stupid," "Throw Out Your Business Plan," and "Good Customer Service Can Bankrupt You."

Shafer has won six Emmys for comedy writing, and as a stand up comedian has open shows for Dionne Warwick, Crystal Gayle and Neil Sedaka. As host of the Seattle TV show Almost Live with Ross Shafer he and the show collected almost 40 Emmy Awards. Performing for corporate audiences worldwide, Shafer found that many top executives are plagued with stage fright. So, Shafer is frequently asked to work one-on-one as an executive public speaking coach. He has taken a special interest in the decay of customer service, and, he has written and produced a dozen funny human resources training films, distributed globally. Shafer is a comedy and game show consultant for the USA network, Bravo, Comedy Central.

Curious? Make a small investment of your time to discover the UMass Family Business Center.