business

Northeast Kansas City Chamber of Commerce

The notion of handguns and hookers so often linked to Independence Avenue in Kansas City, Mo. is fading. Replacing it is a lively, friendly neighborhood where a diverse population of residents and business owners are changing things altogether.

Guests:

Elle Moxley / KCUR

Kansas City boasts being one of the best cities to launch a startup. But the city that hopes to be America’s “most entrepreneurial city,” is still missing one key ingredient — seed capital to get young businesses of the ground.

KCSourceLink, which is a network of organizations that support the creation of small businesses, released a study last week detailing the city’s shortcomings when it comes to funds available for entrepreneurs.

The former dean of the University of Missouri-Kansas City’s business school died Tuesday.

Teng-Kee Tan was named dean of the Bloch School of Management in 2009. Tan, who was in his 60s, died “peacefully,” surrounded by family in Seattle, the Kansas City Star reports, citing an email from the current dean, David Donnelly. 

Cody Newill / KCUR

Richard Eiker, 45, earns $11.05 an hour at McDonald's, a job he's held for 25 years. He has no sick pay, no medical benefits or retirement, and even though he makes more than minimum wage, he struggles to pay his bills and take care of his needs.

He’s part of a movement in Kansas City and nationwide to demand a $15 per hour minimum wage.

He says that after 25 years of working every position at McDonalds, he is afraid to leave in search of better pay.

In a new series called Buzz Kill, Central Standard is looking at Kansas City's buzzwords with the people who best understand the true meaning of our favorite catch-phrases. 

In this installment, we ask what it really means to be an entrepreneur, how you pronounce the word, and how to correctly use it in a sentence. It's an important step for us to take, as a city, if we want to be known for our entr... entrep... entrepreneurial spirit.

Guest:

Paul Andrews

Peregrine Honig and Danielle Meister, the co-owners of Birdie's Panties in Kansas City, Mo., plan to open a second store catering specifically to transgender shoppers in 2015.

The store, to be called All Is Fair, will open in the Bauer Building on West 18th Street in the Crossroads Arts District.

Honig announced the plans on KCUR's Central Standard during a conversation about her work and her art.

If you thought Black Friday and Cyber Monday were the only big holiday shopping events, think again.

Small Business Saturday started in 2010 as a marketing campaign for American Express. Last year, small businesses across the country raked in $5.7 billion in sales on that one day. And that number is expected to grow this year.

Dan Murray is the National Federation of Independent Business’s Kansas branch director. He admits he was skeptical at first, but quickly realized how the dedicated day can help visibility for such businesses.

Technology is all around us, and it's extending into the fabric of our cities as well. Kansas City, Mo., currently has a letter of intent with Cisco to explore the feasibility of implementing a "smart city" framework. Some are calling Kansas City a potential "laboratory" for the smart city concept. What does that mean, and how can we expect it play out in the day-to-day lives of Kansas Citians? 

Guests:

Wikipedia, Creative Commons

We live in a world where there's something remarkable about a clean plate after a meal. But that's just one small piece of the food waste equation. Visits to farms, a meat processing plant, a compost heap, grocery stores and Kansas Citians' kitchens help us understand why there's so much food nobody's eating. 

For more information about food safety, check out this handy chart from the USDA.

Elle Moxley / KCUR

A popular frozen custard shop in Kansas City, Mo., could close after an outside real estate company didn't renew its lease for its Brookside location.

Foo's Fabulous Frozen Custard has been in the same storefront on Brookside Plaza for more than two decades. But owner Betty Bremser learned last week that First Washington Realty Inc. in Bethesda, Md., the company that owns much of the neighborhood shopping district, didn't plan to renew her lease at the end of this month.

Since the 1970s, small businesses have provided a net of two-thirds of all new jobs. Today, they create 55 percent of all jobs in this country. Three local entrepreneurs, who make up part of this trend, appeared on Up to Date to talk about about starting and sustaining a small business in the Kansas City area.

Kansas City Opens 'Dead Letter Office'

Jul 8, 2014
Google Images - CC

Last month, the city of Kansas City, Mo., opened what they’re calling a 'Dead Letter Office,' which is actually a website where the residents and business owners can petition to repeal out-of-date city regulations.

Assistant City Manager Rick Usher focuses on small businesses and entrepreneurship. He says due to Kansas City’s long history, some of the old rules are still in the books.

“Kansas City you know we’re over 150 years old. The city has weathered every economic, political, social, environmental crisis that has occurred through those times,” Usher said.

Missouri politicians – including Gov. Jay Nixon and Kansas City Mayor Sly James — were joined by more than 100 Burns & McDonnell employees in the engineering firm’s parking lot Thursday for a ceremonial groundbreaking of the company’s headquarter expansion.

The firm’s plans call for two building near its current Ward Parkway world headquarter site, adding an additional 450,000 square feet of office space.

Robert Nazarian / talkandroid.com

When Sprint CEO Dan Hesse appeared on a recent episode, he didn’t say much about the anticipated merger of his company with T-Mobile. Since then, talk of a merger between the third and fourth largest US wireless companies hasn't diminished. And one of the companies is based right in our backyard.

On Tuesday's Up to Date we explore the process of corporate mergers and what this one might mean for Sprint's Overland Park campus.

Guests:

Cara McClain / KCUR

Entrepreneurship group 1Week KC wants to make Kansas City a top destination for innovative businesses and start-ups, a goal they're promoting with a week-long celebration that began Monday.

The obstacles and challenges that entrepreneurs face are wide and varied, but here is what some of the people who attended this week's events had to say about the climate in Kansas City:

John Taylor / Wikimedia Commons

When it comes to employment and industry, Sprint is a giant in Kansas City, but that status doesn’t come without some issues.

On Tuesday's Up to Date, Sprint CEO Dan Hesse joins us to talk about rumors of a potential merger with T-Mobile, what a recent quarterly report says about the company and what presses Hesse’s buttons when it comes to audio quality.

Laura Spencer / KCUR

A new museum linked to the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, opens Monday in Overland Park, Kan. The Museum at Prairiefire, at 135th and Nall, will feature two traveling exhibitions a year from the New York-based museum, as well as permanent displays, a hands-on children's discovery room, classrooms and a cafe.

Unilever is adding 70 jobs and investing $99 million at its Independence food manufacturing plant.

About 190 employees currently work at the plant, which for years has made Wishbone salad dressing. The jobs are above average wage. the kind Independence Economic Development Council President Tom Lesnak says the city tries to attract. But those jobs have been in jeopardy for a couple of months now.

Mike Calasnic / Creative Commons, Flickr

Shopping malls across the city and across the nation are closing their doors or re-imagining their futures. With the recent closure of Metro North and a meeting called to gather community input on redevelopment possibilities for Metcalf South, Central Standard convened local experts to look back on the significance of the shopping mall, in our city and in our lives. 

As a job hunter, we all want that great salary that pays us what we’re worth. But sometimes that means doing things most of us are uncomfortable with, like negotiating with your boss.

A study from the National Bureau of Economic Research indicates that women make up only 2.5 percent of the nation’s highest salaries, in part because they often avoid negotiating for better pay.

Additionally, company budgets can limit what employers actually offer, and negotiating too aggressively can actually backfire. 

The business world is infamous for its “glass ceiling.” And it’s true that being a woman in a man’s world can make it more difficult to succeed.

In the second part of Tuesday's Up to Date, we talk with the president the Kansas City Sports Commission and the publisher of The Kansas City Star — both women — about how they reached the top and what advice they have for other women.

Guests:

Wikimedia Commons - CC

Kansas abolitionists and pro-slavery forces in Missouri fought a bloody border war in the 1850s, splitting the Kansas City region. Some 160 years later the states are still locked in economic combat that pushes businesses, and jobs, back and forth across the state line, with the companies themselves often the only clear winners.

Photoguyinmo / Flickr-CC

We all know that Kansas City likes to be, well, up to date, and several new businesses are helping make that happen. 

In the first part of Tuesday's Up to Date, reporter Kevin Collison joins us to take a look at the top ten developments in Kansas City businesses this year. We'll examine Cerner's announcement for a new campus on Bannister Road, the GSA's move downtown, the sale of Boulevard Brewery to a Belgian company, and more.

Guest:

KCUR

Office holiday parties are in full swing in Kansas City.

And we want to know, how can you festively fraternize with your coworkers without jeopardizing your employment?

Tell KCUR: What are the dos and don’ts at holiday office parties?

Tweet us @KCUR, using the #TellKCUR hashtag.

You also can go to our Facebook page; leave us a voicemail at 816-235-2881, or write a comment below.

stockmonkeys.com

Not many retail companies can or want to boast that their employees are paid $21 an hour and given health insurance, but Costco is proud to do so. 

On Monday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with founder and former Costco CEO Jim Sinegal about the wild success and the almost unparalleled employee compensation that his company is known for. We'll find out why Sinegal decided to pay his workers over twice the national minimum wage, and what effects it has on their work ethic and shareholders' blood pressure.

Guests:

The Governor’s Conference on Economic Development in Missouri has named a Kansas City company its Exporter of the Year. SCD Probiotics makes products used for human health, agriculture, veterinary medicine and industry.   

reddirtshop.com

Imagine starting a business for any other reason but to make a profit. There is a subset of business owners who do just that ... social entrepreneurs.

These executives look to organize, create and manage a venture to make social change. On Friday's Up to Date we examine social enterprise: from what drives someone to start a business aimed at bettering the lives of others, to the process of taking an idea all the way to market, to how the funds find their way to worthwhile causes.

Guests:

The state wants to crack down on fly-by-night roofers or scam artists, especially those that might visit an area after a storm.

There's a Kansas law on the books that took effect in July, requiring roofers to get a state license. But it looks like many companies may not be aware of the requirement, and state office is trying to get the word out.

The AG's office says they have not levied any fines against roofers for failure to comply with the new law, which the Kansas Attorney General’s Office administers.

An on-going scam to bill senior citizens for medical alert device service is gaining steam in Kansas and other Midwestern states.  

The Better Business Bureau says there’s been a significant increase in calls about the scheme.  The pre-recorded message claims that someone has purchased a medical alert device for the person as a gift.  Then the recipient is asked to verify his or her identity with a bank account or credit card number. 

Do all those reviews on sites like Yelp or TripAdvisor really matter for small businesses

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