MONTGOMERY – The River Region Round Table, which launches May 25, is designed for business owners and company principals to gather monthly and jointly solve problems.

“This is not a networking group,” said Nectar Bridge President Gary Smith, who founded the River Region Round Table. Smith has owned businesses; owns Nectar Bridge and is currently a chief operating officer of a company. “Nobody really knows what a business
owner is going through quite like another business owner.”

The monthly meetings at the Capital City Club will be about 90 minutes and each member will have 5 to 10 minutes to identify a business challenge or opportunity and then 15 to 20 minutes to hear suggestions and recommendations from other members, who may
have dealt with similar issues.

This is all about getting advice from like-minded colleagues. Business owners cannot discuss many of their business issues with employees, people in the community and their customers, Smith said. “They certainly don’t want to discuss all of their challenges or
opportunities in front of just anybody.”

Each member is required to sign a nondisclosure agreement (NDA) to make sure what’s said in the room between business owners stays in the room. Those conversations could be about expanding a business; moving a business; selling a business; or a sensitive
personnel issue.

The NDA “is a critical distinction of what I’m trying to do,” he said. “We want people to be able to discuss their business plans,” Smith said. Competitors are prohibited – only one member from a particular field and the group is limited to eight people. The current members are an economic development advisor, certified public accountant, management consultant and computer networking business owner.

“You’re going to be less candid if you feel there is a competitor in the room with you,” Smith said.

Annual membership is $750 or $75 monthly and includes lunch at Capital City Club. There is a onetime $250 joining fee, but it’s just $100 for Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce members. “I selected the Capital City Club because it’s important having a private meeting room and not have a lot of noise and distractions,” Smith said. “I want people to be able to discuss a confidential and perhaps complex issue in that meeting room.”

There is access to power-point presentations and members are encouraged to talk with each other outside the group. “When these groups are successful you absolutely gain a set of friends,” Smith said.

Members can also request monthly one-on-one coaching sessions with Smith, who is a business consultant. “My aim is to help a business owner figure out what their vision is for their company. I want the owner of the business working on the business and not just
in it,” he said.

For information about the River Region Round Table, call Smith at (334) 399-8111 or visit the website: www.nectarbridge.com.

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