Jim Reser, the first director of the new Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center (ASBTDC) regional office at Arkansas Tech University in Russellville, believes that rebuilding relationships will be the most important task in rebuilding the economy in the post-recession world.
“The biggest challenge for businesses is to connect with customers and to make them feel comfortable doing business with us again,” said Reser. “People are very unsettled, and now is a time when trust needs to be rebuilt.
“One of the issues that the ASBTDC has developed as a high priority is getting people connected with their customers,” continued Reser. “Those relationships are what are most damaged during times of uncertainty. We want to work with businesses to help them rebuild those relationships with their customers and to build new relationships, sometimes outside our normal customer base.”
Reser comes to Russellville with 18 years of consulting and business coaching experience, including seven years as the center director for the Small Business Development Center at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colo.
His past community involvement in Colorado includes serving as president of the Rotary Club in Durango, president of the Cortez Area Chamber of Commerce and chairman of the Montezuma Community Economic Development Association.
Reser graduated from Fort Lewis College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in business administration in 1975. He earned a Master of Science degree in management and organization from the University of Colorado at Denver in 1992.
He said that the reputation of the ASBTDC was among the key factors in luring him to the Natural State.
“The Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center system has a marvelous reputation across the entire country for its high level of professionalism, its terrific support of entrepreneurs and small business people and its ability to connect local people with highly sophisticated resources for market research and financing,” said Reser. “It’s just a top-quality program, so it’s a privilege to be a part of that and to offer that in this eight-county region.”
The ASBTDC represents a partnership between the U.S. Small Business Administration, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and other institutions of higher education in Arkansas. The center is dedicated to assisting new, existing and expanding businesses.
The center at Arkansas Tech serves Conway, Crawford, Franklin, Johnson, Logan, Pope, Scott, Sebastian and Yell counties.
Among the services offered at ASBTDC regional offices are consulting, training and market research. Most services are offered free of charge.
There are approximately 1,000 such centers around the nation. The network of small business development centers represents the largest outreach program coordinated by the U.S. Small Business Administration.
The ASBTDC regional office at Arkansas Tech is located on the fourth floor of Rothwell Hall. Those wishing to learn more about the center’s services can contact Reser by phone at (479) 356-2067 or by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.]]>