Posts Tagged ‘small business’

Time for Business: Power Hour

Power HourSan Jose businesses, looking for a way to save energy and money? Want some free advice for managing your business? PG&E is hosting Time for Business Power Hour at The San Jose Woman’s Club, Thursday August 28, 2014 from 7:30 AM to 4 PM.

You’ll have  an opportunity to:

  • Create a free energy plan, with a  energy assessment and a customized action plan for how to save both money and energy
  • Talk one-on-one with your PG&E representative about customized ways to help you save
  • Learn key business strategies from local experts on digital marketing, personal branding and small business financing.
  • Enjoy snacks and refreshments from popular local businesses
  • Get connected with other professionals, networking with business leaders


Register here.

When: Thursday, August 28, 2014 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Open House) 
Speaker sessions will  repeat and start at: 8 a.m., 10 a.m., 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. 

Location: San Jose Women’s Club
75 South 11th Street
San Jose, CA 95112
Get Directions

Catching his neighbors on film

Joe Claus
Joe Claus has been working on a project called My Neighbors since last year, documenting with photographs the small business owners who make San Jose’s downtown unique.

Joe started his project because he’s a San Jose native, from a family that’s been in the area since the 1820’s. In 2007, he was completing an SJSU degree in industrial design and photography, and he decided to use his skills to give something back to his hometown. He felt that “Big business really tears up small businesses” and that if the community doesn’t support its small businesses, it loses a vital element.

He began taking portraits of small business owners at the entrances of their businesses. His camera is a Hasselblad medium-format camera, the kind traditionally used by portrait photographers for the incredibly sharp prints that can be made from its relatively large negatives. He loves the hands-on process of film photography, and he started out developing and printing the photos himself, but he now uses a professional lab for printing.

Joe says that at first he was turned down by as many as 80% of the business owners he approached, but now he’s usually able to make contact with a potential subject through another person he’s already photographed, and he now has much better success in convincing the business owners to participate. He says that his early efforts to convince people to be photographed, including a 45 minute conversation with one particular owner, also helped him to understand his own motivations and goals for the project.

The project is now just over 100 photos of local business owners. Joe took about 80 of these pictures in the past 6 months, despite having only one free day per week to devote to his project. He had originally planned to move away from San Jose after graduating from SJSU, but he’s stayed here, living near downtown and commuting to Santa Cruz for work, to be able to continue the My Neighbors project. He has no plans to wrap up the project in the near future: “I just want to keep going,” he says.

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