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Entrepreneurial Banking: How Can We be a Part of That?

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When people think of Kansas City, they usually think about fountains, jazz and barbecue—or our World Series Champions, the Royals! But there's almost nothing that better defines our town than the entrepreneurial spirit it harbors. Perhaps one of the most progressively entrepreneurial cities in the country, Kansas City is rich with a diverse mix of small businesses, and it’s an especially exciting time for these companies.

The Global Entrepreneurship Network recently placed Kansas City as one of the top five places in the world for entrepreneurship! That’s a pretty good list to be on if you consider just how important these entrepreneurs are to our community.

Our bank was founded on the entrepreneurial vision of Byron Thompson, and we feel a deep kinship with the innovators and movers and shakers around us. We're constantly asking ourselves, "How can we be a part of that? What more can we do to support this booming entrepreneurial community?"

Entrepreneurial Spirit: The Business Fuel for a Thriving Community

Small businesses are vital elements of the community. They bring their hometown a score of benefits: They provide local jobs, boost the economy, and enhance the culture and prestige of a neighborhood. They are the heartbeat of their community. In Kansas City, that entrepreneurial spirit is a mighty heart indeed, so we must do our part to keep it healthy and strong.

We strive to be right at the center of that action. We use a “relationship banking” approach, which provides an unparalleled realm of fluid communication and access to services and guidance to small businesses. By being a rock on which these businesses can rely, banks can be a steady support for not just these businesses but, in turn, the entire business community.

What Can We Do for the Entrepreneurial Community?

We do more than simply provide money for new businesses just starting up, or processing checks once they start bringing in revenue. Banks must be a financial backbone, yes, but they must also be business partners. Rather than simply being there when a business owner needs money, our associates act as guides, coaches and friends.

Here are three ways we strive to be a part of the entrepreneurial efforts of local businesses:

  1. Be experts about the current events in the community. In order to be the best stewards of entrepreneurship, we stay in the know about local businesses and their various states of growth and development. The Kansas City Area Development Council is a great asset for keeping tabs on all of the latest news and events happening in and around the entrepreneurial community of Kansas City.
  2. Every step of the way, provide one-on-one coaching. In working with local businesses, we turn our focus to being partners. Entrepreneurs rely on us as advisors who can offer them real-world solutions, ask the right questions, work collaboratively and think creatively. If we can create these solutions individually, working alongside each given company, the entire business community stands to gain.
  3. Be a better partner (and a local partner). As a home grown bank in the middle of this entrepreneurial community, we hold a considerable advantage over the national banks by delivering the knockout punch that can help small businesses prosper within their given region. Being in close proximity means we can connect with small-business owners personally, giving them customized service that provides real benefits to eliminate a middle-man bureaucratic management. We take pride in seeing the entrepreneurial community benefit from these efforts.

These are just some of the ways we position ourselves to be a part of the action in Kansas City.

“Let’s Get to Work”

This is a great time to be an entrepreneur in Kansas City, but these things don't just happen on their own. It takes effort by the right people to help effect entrepreneurial growth and development in a given community, including banks like ours who do their part to collaborate with these startups and be true business partners.

Kansas City Mayor Sly James writes in the Kansas City Star that continuing this success takes more than just cheering on these entrepreneurs:

“Entrepreneurship has defined Kansas City’s past, and it is critical to our future… Let’s do more than just celebrate. Let’s get to work.”

Because local banks play such an intricate part in the development of small businesses, we have an incredible opportunity to make a lasting impact on this flourishing entrepreneurial community. CCB exists because someone believed in Byron Thompson’s dream. We intend to pay it forward every opportunity we get. Carpe diem!

How do you participate in Kansas City’s entrepreneurial growth? Let us know by tweeting @CountryClubBank!


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Toni Walsh

Executive Vice President - Human Resources

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