By Sam Robinson
Mickey Maurer, the Chairman of the Board of the National Bank of Indianapolis and the Indianapolis Business Journal, spoke to Hamilton County Leadership Academy graduates at a summit on June 12.
Maurer, the namesake of the Indiana University Maurer School of Law, told the graduates that their futures in business would be dependent on how they treat their employees and customers.
“People are the most important part of every business transaction,” Maurer said. “I did not learn that in business school. We did finance sheets and counted numbers, but we never learned about the people involved.”
Maurer said that businesses should give back to the community, and HCLA graduates learned how to do that through their 9-month coursework. The HCLA teaches students management and leadership skills and assigns them to work with local non-profits.
Rachel Coverdale, an alumnus of the HCLA, worked with her team to organize a community forum to talk about heroin abuse in Hamilton County. She said that the dialog the forum inspired was the most fulfilling part of the project.
“To me one of the best things that came about from the forum is we had a lively discussion after we heard the experts speak,” Coverdale said. “And the media response spread our message.”
Maurer, who has worked in television, radio and newspaper publishing, is himself a philanthropist. He founded ‘Mickey’s Camp,’ a program that teaches adults new skills at a summer camp. The organization donates all of the profits to local charities of the participants choosing.
Maurer told the graduates to “behave” and to have respect the people with whom they’ll do business.
“Return your calls,” Maurer said. “Keep your commitments. Show respect. See the people in your waiting rooms.”
“Entrepreneurship is a grand game,” Maurer said. “Welcome to the game, and congratulations.”