Maui Business

HSBC Speakers to Share Insights on Customer Service, Taxes, Protecting Brand

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The second annual Hawaiʻi Small Business Conference is scheduled for May 2-3, 2018, at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center in Kahului.

The first day of the conference, May 2, national and local business leaders and successful business owners will share important strategies for business success. The next day, four workshops will provide additional insights.

Small business that are interested in gaining tips on how to deliver exceptional customer service, pay less taxes, promote a company, and protect a brand are encouraged to attend the upcoming HSBC workshops on Thursday, May 3.

Karen McCullough is a Generations Speaker. She helps organizations and leaders cut through the generational stereotypes and get back to reality by leveraging their team’s strengths, enriching the work environment, and driving better results. Photo Courtesy

On May 3, three-hour workshop sessions will run parallel both morning (9 a.m. to noon) and afternoon (1 to 4 p.m.). Workshops will feature:


Karen McCullough, a nationally acclaimed Generations Speaker, will lead the first workshop, “Going Beyond Your Brand – Delivering WOW Service.”

During this workshop, attendees will learn how to connect business’ vision and brand to the behaviors of its employees, examine the five keys to creating high engagement, and more. “Your brand is the core of your company, the heart of your business, the soul of your culture, and the foundation for a WOW customer experience,” says McCullough. “The way you get Beyond the Brand is through employee and customer engagement. Engaged employees are critical to the success of every organization. Engaged employees perform at high levels and create emotional engagements with the customer.”

The second workshop, “Tax Strategies for Small Business,” Robert Kawahara, CPA, Managing Member of Kawahara + Hu, will share information on how to reduce taxes for a business, the latest tax changes, and how to plan ahead. “Taxes can often take a big bite out of the income of a small business and owners need information to make proper business decisions,” says Kawahara. “Understanding taxes and effective tax planning will go a long way in helping you keep more of the money you earn.”

Robert Kawahara, CPA is the Managing Member of Kawahara + Hu, LLC, Maui’s largest CPA firm. The firm is a full-service company providing Individual and Business Tax Planning and Preparation, Audit Services, Estate Planning, Business Valuations, Bookkeeping and Payroll services. Photo Courtesy


Gwen Woltz, Co-owner or Wahine Media, will lead the third workshop, “Maximizing Your Social Media Budget.”

“A thriving online presence and reputation is essential to the success of any business today. One of the biggest misconceptions about small businesses in Hawaiʻi is that we are limited because we are on an isolated island or that we can’t compete with mainland businesses,” says Woltz. “I hope to show attendees that Hawaiʻi small businesses are not limited because we are on a small island but empowered to do things a little differently. Hawaiʻi small businesses have a unique advantage that no other small businesses have – a strong sense of place and community – a perfect formula to thrive on social media.”

In the fourth workshop, “Intellectual Property and Branding,” William McKeon, Keri Mehling and Rebecca Filipovic of McKeon Sheldon Mehling (A Limited Liability Law Company) will discuss what trademarks are, why they are important, and how to develop and protect a strong trademark.


“A company’s trademark, the brand under which they sell their goods or services, is oftentimes one of their most valuable assets,” said Filipovic. “Developing a strong trademark and taking steps to protect it should be an integral part of any small business strategy from the outset. It also helps owners focus on what their long term goals or end game might be, whether it’s licensing their brand, manufacturing products or eventually selling the company.”

The cost for the full-day Conference on May 2, is $95 per person and includes lunch. The cost for the May 3 workshops is $35 per person per workshop. Lunch is available for an additional $20 per person.

Register online here. For additional information, email [email protected] or call (808) 875-2300.

For a full conference and workshops schedule, click here.

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