By Nicole Ortiz
Special to News is my Business
Hundreds of business owners took part in the “Entrepreneurs First” workshop hosted by FirstBank and the autonomous municipality of Caguas Tuesday, at the Centro Criollo de Ciencia y Tecnología (C3TEC) to learn about how to reinvent their businesses, educate themselves and strengthen local industries.
The workshop began with “Chispa Empresarial” by Nelson Reyes, a social-community psychologist. Reyes motivated the audience to go forward and said entrepreneurs must be “out of the box,” have vision and constantly reinvent themselves.
“You need to replace, merge, adapt, modify, add or search for other uses, delete, rearrange all areas of a company,” said the industrial psychologist.
Meanwhile, Carlos Figueroa, vice president of FirstBank’s commercial transactional banking division, and Aysha Issa vice president of personal banking and business, presented tools for effective commercial finance management, such as “Smart Cash” and “Smart Check.”
These are services that FirstBank offers to commercial customers with small and medium enterprises, consisting of a smart safe for direct deposit and deposits to the bank system that allows checks to enter electronically from their own offices using a computer and a scanner.
Other FirstBank officials, namely Alfredo Báez, head of FirstBank Insurance, FirstBank Securities President Caleb Navarro, and Mari Evelyn Rodríguez, vice president of banking, discussed a variety of topics from risks associated with running a business, to the importance of having an emergency plan in place, and the role of investors for small and medium businesses — a topic that drew the most interest from participants.
The activity included a message from Caguas Mayor William Miranda-Torres, who said seeing the aspiring entrepreneurs served to strengthen his town’s commitment to help them move forward.
“In Caguas we are convinced that the island’s economic development has to be directed toward the creation of local production and so we have to help more entrepreneurs to open their businesses,” said Miranda-Torres.