Union County CEO March Meeting Features a Cross-Section of Local Businesses


Union County CEO March Meeting Features a Cross-Section of Local Businesses

DSCF0198ANNA—It’s not unusual to find high school students at Anna’s The Strike Zone any time the doors are open but this day was different.  Students weren’t there to bowl or play pool but instead to get a look behind the curtain at a very successful, very revenue diverse business in Union County.

DSCF0203“This was a different kind of business than the others we’ve visited this year,” explained Chairman Rollie Hawk.  “We’ve seen all kinds of businesses with different products and services but this one is the first based primarily in the entertainment sector.  That’s a different dynamic than the students have learned about so far.”

DSCF0199The Strike Zone owner and manager Kim Prater and CEO board member and sales expert Ryan Carter led the discussion covering revenue centers, diversifying and the unique challenges of a business that caters to young children, adults and every age in between.

“Between Kim and Ryan, myself, the Midland staff present and even a few students with their own businesses, there was a tremendous amount of business experience in the room that day,” said Hawk.  “Even though we’re all coming from very different business sectors, there was a common thread running through our comments: do your research, know what you are getting into and do as much job shadowing or interning as possible before you take the plunge.  That was one of the main messages for the day that we hope the students left with.”

Something else that made the day special was the number of businesses collaborating behind the scenes.

DSCF0209“In addition to The Strike Zone hosting the class, Anna-Jonesboro National Bank offered to buy lunch.  As a result, Jordo’s Pizza provided pizza, breadsticks and drinks for all in attendance,” added Hawk.  “This is exactly the model I hope CEO can establish here in Union County.  We’ve got some great businesses and great business leaders.  But this kind of cross-pollination and commitment to our students is what’s going to take Union County’s economy to the next level.”

The Union County CEO Program is currently scheduling interviews with potential class teachers.

“We’ve got several highly qualified candidates, each with unique combinations of experience in both academics and business.  I’m looking forward to getting the right person in place and laying the groundwork for next year’s daily class meetings.”