Peninsula Small Business Talk

from the Peninsula Executives Association

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Posts Tagged ‘Flicker Kerin Kruger & Bissada’

Brian Irion, Esq., Law Offices of Brian Irion has his Latest Bankruptcy Case Dismissed with Prejudice

Brian Irion, Esq., Law Offices of Brian Irion has been a member of PEA for nine years.  He was brought in to the organization by Roger Bolgard, Jackson & Miller and Brian has brought in three members himself (San Mateo Daily Journal, All About Business Services, and Flicker, Kerin, Kruger & Bissada).  Roger, like Brian, is an attorney, but they focus on different things.

Brian began by giving an overview of what kinds of things he has done in order to help PEA members understand what he can do for them.  In the last year, Brian has had 65-70 matters whose attorneys’ fees ranged from around $75 to $130,000.  In the area of intellectual property, he handled a trademark dispute for a synthetic seawater manufacturer, a copyright disputes for movie distributors, and a patent dispute for clean room testing equipment.  Brian has also represented contractors, some on an ongoing basis, in litigation.  If you have a transaction matter Brian recommends talking to Roger.  He has represented general contractors in collection matters and disputes with owners, subcontractors and architects.  He has also represented subcontractors in disputes with owners and general contractors (residential and commercial).  Another area Brian specializes in is real estate law.  He does purchase and sale litigation for residential homes and commercial facilities.  Brian has also worked on construction litigation and evictions (the landlord side for commercial and residential).  Unfriendly business dissolutions that are corporate, partnerships or LLCs are also cases that Brian works on.  In addition, he works on collections cases representing service providers and people who have bought goods and didn’t get them.

Finally, Brian also does many forms of bankruptcy.  Over the last year, Brian has done 30-35 debtor representation bankruptcies (chapter 7, chapter 13, and chapter 11).  In the last year Brian has also represented creditors, like in his latest trial, as well as unavoidably interested parties.

Brian shared a ‘PEA works’ story about his latest bankruptcy trial.  Brian represented the largest allegedly unsecured creditor in a chapter 13 bankruptcy case (who happened to be the ex-husband of the debtor).  He shared an overview of the case, and then spoke about how PEA helped him win the case.  The debtor sold her Porsche a few months before filing for bankruptcy for only $3000 to a close friend.  Brian spoke to Larry Moore, Larry’s Autoworks and Larry thought the car would be worth about $14,000 scrap.  Larry gave Brian information for getting in touch with a scrap auto dealer and a Porsche mechanic to give expert testimony.  Brian also got in touch with Mike Feller, Innovative Sales & Leasing who gave a declaration to value the car.  Finally, Brian had Bob Rosenberg, GR8WORK Builders, Inc. evaluate the value of a house she had purchased as well as being an investigator of sorts to help Brian find out what was inside the house as he suspected the debtor did not list all of her assets.  Ultimately, the case was dismissed with prejudice, which means she not only still owes money to her former husband, she also owes her divorce lawyer and cannot file bankruptcy to discharge these debts again.  Ever.

Brian finished his presentation by talking about what is a good lead for him.  He is not a good person for small claims matters (that is under $10,000), and not good if you want a lawyer to write ‘just a letter’ (this will just make the other side hire a lawyer as well).  A good lead is someone who understands that, as famously said by Abraham Lincoln, “A lawyer’s time and advice are his stock in trade.”

Marketing Without the Internet: Tips and Tricks from PEA

Besides sharing information on services, tips, advice, etc. from each business, PEA also spends one meeting a quarter focused on special programs, including discussions on marketing, panels of members sharing their expertise, and tips on how to become a green business.  Back in July, the Program Committee planned a special program designed to give everyone a few new marketing ideas the old-fashioned way rather than through Internet marketing.  This was an opportunity to hear ideas for getting new customers or keeping existing ones that work for other businesses.

Here are a few of the ideas mentioned at the meeting:

  • Laurie Moore, Larry’s AutoWorks said that they use license plate frames, recyclable bags, post it notes, a monthly newsletter and they ask their satisfied customers to give them referrals.  Larry MooreLarry’s Autoworks added that they pre-book service appointments and give both reminder and follow-up calls.  They use line ads in the yellow pages that focus on what they do, not their name.
  • Bobbie Fakkema, Events, Etc… invites clients to a tasting at her warehouse once a year.  They are encouraged to bring a guest with them.
  • Mike Clark, Michael J. Clark, CPA makes completing your tax returns as easy as possible.  They are already stamped and only need to be signed and mailed with a check.
  • Rick Rosensweig, Morgan Stanley runs events where he invites outside speakers.  He also sends out a newsletter.
  • Rolf Kruger, Flicker, Kerin, Kruger & Bissada belongs to professional associations and works to make sure his clients have a positive experience.
  • Sam Harding, Retirement Administration supports local organizations like the Obon Festival, especially when there is a connection with one of his clients.
  • John Sylvester, SST Insurance Brokers has learned not to assume that his clients already know about all of his services.
  • Shawn McMillan, Connoisseur Coffee has signs for his clients to display reading “Proudly serving Connoisseur Coffee.”  They give open houses and donate coffee to community events.
  • Don Miller, Honorary Member said that when he was a practicing dentist, he called patients at night to check on them after a procedure.
  • Larry Hassett, Hardware Stores sponsors community events like the Rock the Block event in Half Moon Bay and belongs to service clubs.
  • Konrad Thaler, Smilin Dogs makes sure that every sense is addressed when you walk into Smilin Dogs:  it smells clean, the floor looks clean, the atmosphere is friendly, and there are photos of client dogs having fun to spark the human clients’ imaginations.
  • Cheri Jackson, Older Adult Care Management says they have a celebrity spokesperson, Willie Mays’ wife.
  • Julie Fukuhara, Stern Mortgage has a by-invitation special networking event for professionals in related fields.  Each participant receives a roster with contact information for all participants for the day.
  • Randy Mills, Pioneer Services uses his van as a mobile billboard.
  • Fawni Hill, Larick Alan Hill uses job signs and sends postcards to clients with photos of recent projects.
  • John King, Keller-Williams Realty puts up signs at every property and gives out pens, key chains, and water bottles.  He uses a direct mail campaign and has been a Little League team sponsor.
  • Kaye Sharbrough, Senior Seasons does speaking engagements, belongs to professional groups, and attends senior fairs.  She gives out personal information organizers with her business name.
  • Tom Brown, All Reasons Moving has the company name on trucks, uses direct mail, gives their business name to realtors, and sends out Christmas cards.
  • Jon Maystrik, Arborwell Professional Tree Management says that Arborwell has a marketing manager and takes marketing very seriously.  They do it all: run ads, go to trade shows, golf tournaments, send thank you cards, and have a direct mail campaign.  Their white trucks with company logo are washed every week, and they have sponsorships and practice philanthropy.
  • Scott Foster, Cassidy Turley BT Commercial tells everyone what he does, including when he coaches water polo.

A full list summarizing all the tips mentioned was handed out to all of PEA’s members.

Interested in joining PEA?  Visit our website to learn more.