Local Businesses Share
In the coming weeks, we are interviewing local business owners to see how they are doing. We are publishing brief articles about each business - maybe you can relate to some of these business owners? Please consider supporting these businesses. Contact us to be interviewed at or call us at 509-455-5053.
Interview #1
Owner: Brenda McKinley
What the business does: Realtor with the Windermere brokerage.

Target audiences: First time home buyers, as well as buyers and sellers.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business? Other than a two week time period, early on, she said business is up and she hasn't seen a slow down. She was teaching in-person classes for first time home buyers that were affected; but has continued to teach virtually through SNAP.

What has she learned? Hiring for fit and culture can be difficult, yet is business critical.

She is inspired by: Helping others. As a member of Sun City Church she participates in weekly food delivery in the community. She enjoys community outreach.

Special offer: Complimentary home value report. She is a Homes for Heroes realtor, if you are a first responder, teacher, veteran, medical professional, check out – if you are buying, selling or financing you can earn money back through special rebates. A week after they move into the house they get a check in the mail.

Contact: Brenda McKinley, 509-850-4663,
Interview #2
Owner: Rian Lothrop
What the business does: Full-service commercial printing company offering graphic design, printing of business cards, letterhead and brochures. They are also a promotional products dealer and are now offering PPE such as gowns, masks and sanitizing stations. Company was created in 2005, Rian and Wendy Lothrop purchased in 2015. They routinely place in awards with Spokane Coeur d'Alene Living magazine.

Target audiences: They serve a variety of b-to-b clients in the region, many small businesses. They also provide services for educational institutions like Gonzaga, EWU, and WSU. They serve local municipalities and counties as well.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business? Early 2020 was shaping up to be a very strong year - one of expansion for their business. They did take a hit with regard to cash flow. However, they were able to get back to business fairly quickly as they had many customers that were deemed essential, so they were as well.

What has he learned? When COVID hit, they started calling all customers and prospects; they stayed in touch and even earned new customers. "The biggest shift was being able to offer PPE products. Being open, being essential was key for us," Lothrop said.

He is inspired by: Positive actions by regional chambers and business associations who have pulled together to support local businesses.

Special offer: 15% off discount to new clients if they mention this newsletter.

Contact: Rian and Wendy Lothrop, Mojo Print Solutions, 509.459.6656,,
Interview #3
Owner: Neil Heckerman
What the business does: Electrical engineering consultancy with a focus on helping clients with investments, technology and growth. They serve in a consulting function to improve processes, save money, and make recommendations for use of capital and growth strategies.

Target audiences: They work in the U.S. and abroad and they work with audiences from maintenance staff to production managers up to the board of directors and executives. When working with clients, their objective is to solve a problem for them and help individual contacts to make a case for a better decision within their company.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business? H2E took the time to invest in their technology and embrace Microsoft Teams. Their employees are able to work from home with this investment. They saw financial impacts in the aerospace and construction sectors.

What has he learned? Communication and vision is critical; everyone's value equation is unique.

He is inspired by: "I believe in America and I want us to learn from this and have a re-awakening in our industry. If we invest in our technology and grow, others don’t stand a chance. We can overcome given the opportunity. See the opportunity for change and come out of this more competitive – if you do the right things now, you could be positioning yourself much better than others for the future."

Contact: Neil Heckerman,, (509) 927-2424, 23305 E. Knox Ave Liberty Lake, WA 99019
Interview #4
Owner: Scott and Roxanne Cook
What the business does: Full-service catering and cooking classes specializing in international and standard fare menus along with a variety of nutritional options such as paleo, keto, vegan, gluten free. They hold cooking classes twice monthly; otherwise they are busy with weddings, business and special events.

Target audiences: Business groups seeking catering options, brides and wedding planners, people who enjoy cooking classes.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business? They set up inexpensive gourmet lunches for $10 that they were selling throughout the shut-down to people delivering to those who were health compromised, or elderly. Otherwise, Scott said he's had more time to golf. Weddings were either postponed to 2021 or this fall. Cooking classes will resume soon.

What has he learned? Growing too fast or doing too much can compromise quality, and that is of concern to him as an owner.

He is inspired by: "I’ve been doing this for over 40 years and I love what I do and I don’t get tired of it. I love cooking for people, love going to my kitchen, it is rewarding what I do."

Special offer: 10% off catering if booked by July 31, 2020.

Contact: Scott and Roxanne Cook,, 509-939-4527
Interview #5
Owners: Mindy Gagné, Searri Shipman
What the business does: Accounting and tax firm for small-to-medium businesses; can serve in a consulting and fractional CFO capacity.

Target audiences: Business owners and managers for both tax filing, payroll, and financial management of the business.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business? The impact has been across several areas of the business - for payroll clients, if they laid off or furloughed employees then payroll isn't being processed. The tax deadline was extended to July, which gave them more time to prepare taxes. Sanitation and safety of the office environment for employees and clients has been a focus, as well as more virtual meetings.

What have they learned? Promotion and availability of virtual work. Also, throughout course of business, finding the right employees for a cultural fit has been a challenge. They had to develop an employee handbook sooner than expected.

They are inspired by: "With everything changing so much, the potential over the next year is exciting. People are missing the opportunities that are out there now. We are working on opportunities that have come out of chaos."

Special offer: When you book a 1-hour consultation, receive a financial business assessment for free.

Contact: Mindy Gagne, 509-822-7952,
Referral Rewards
If you refer us to a business owner, to show our appreciation for a client sign up, you will be provided the gift card of your choice to one of the following businesses.

Group Coaching Sign-Up: $50 gift card
1-to-1 Coaching Sign-Up: $100 gift card