Governor Expected to Approve Civil Liability Protections for Businesses


Employers clearly have reasons to hesitate before making operating decisions due to unknown risks associated with the coronavirus and the potential legal liability they may face in a lawsuit alleging their actions are the reason someone was exposed to the coronavirus.

Thanks to expected activity that continues in Columbus this week, the Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) expects legislation that the business community has been advocating for will be signed by the Governor, granting civil liability immunity for businesses, schools, health-care providers and other employers, as well as health-care workers, against lawsuits claiming they helped transmit the coronavirus.  The protection would extend through September of next year.

Click here for a recent state advocacy communication GCP signed-on to, as part of a larger effort with various, diverse Ohio groups and organizations.

Protecting employers and our health care providers for their essential work is critical.  And, approving state legislation that tackles these challenges can serve as the foundation of Ohio’s economic rebound by affording employers more predictability about their legal risks as they operate. 

GCP appreciates Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof and House Speaker Bob Cupp for their leadership on this issue as we continued to work with legislative leaders and stress the importance of providing the business community with appropriate liability protection from litigation arising from the pandemic.

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  • Next up: Governor Signs Business Liability Legislation

    Governor Signs Business Liability Legislation


    On Monday, Governor Mike DeWine signed HB 606 into law during a virtual event. The legislation grants civil immunity to individuals, schools, health care providers, businesses, and other entities from lawsuits arising from exposure, transmission, or contraction of COVID-19. Lawsuits are still permitted in cases where someone is accused of helping to spread the virus through intentional or wanton misconduct or reckless disregard of the consequences. The immunity takes effect in 90 days and will run through September 30, 2021.

    “Employers have reason to hesitate before making operating decisions due to risks associated with the coronavirus and the potential legal liability they may face,” said Kevin Johnson of NexGenInteractive and Chair of the COSE Board of Directors. “Protecting employers and health care providers is critical. GCP appreciates Governor DeWine, Senate President Obhof, and Speaker Cupp for their leadership on this issue. The legislation that was approved will offer necessary liability protection from litigation arising from the pandemic while we do all that we can to safeguard our employees in a very challenging environment.”

    Click here for a recent state advocacy communication GCP signed-on to in support of the legislation, as part of a larger effort with various, diverse Ohio groups and organizations.

    GCP/COSE small business leaders, Kevin Johnson and Tim Opsitnick, participated in the virtual event as Governor DeWine officially approved the bill.

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  • Next up: Help Ensure our Community is Counted in 2020 Census

    Help Ensure our Community is Counted in 2020 Census


    Every 10 years, the U.S. Census Bureau undertakes a mammoth task: counting all the people residing in the United States. This count affects the allocation of funding for our community’s public resources (e.g., roads, hospitals, schools), how we plan for the future, and our voice in government.

    Learn more here about the importance of the 2020 Census for you, your business and community.

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  • Next up: How Being a COSE Member Helped My Business in 2019

    How Being a COSE Member Helped My Business in 2019

    From saving money with our healthcare options, to networking, writing and speaking opportunities, hear how small business owners benefited from their COSE membership in 2019.


    We love to hear how COSE makes an impact on its members and their businesses, and we want to share some of the most recent testimonials with you. Hear from some of our members about how their COSE membership helps their businesses grow and succeed, and be sure to let us know at the end of this article if you have a story of your own to share.

    “As a member since 1998, I always leverage COSE events as opportunities to meet people with new ideas and resources, and I certainly expanded my network of creative people last year. But the biggest benefit to me in 2019 was that I got curious about this MEWA thing that COSE kept advertising, and I was delighted when I flipped my coverage to a new plan and saved nearly $12,000 in annual premiums. Woot!”

    Jim Smith

    The Executive Happiness Coach


    "COSE helped my business in 2019 by providing Pandata with access to resources that allow us to attract top talent. Also, by guest blogging for COSE we have been able to further evangelize how data science and artificial intelligence can be used to provide insights and solve pressing business problems for our local business community."

    Nicole Ponstingle

    Chief Operating Officer, Partner



    “My husband retired recently and joined my business. And so in 2019—after being a member for every reason except the insurance—I took advantage of the COSE health insurance through Medical Mutual.  Even after vetting other vendors, COSE had the best pricing for the best benefits. I am thrilled to have my husband home and us working together and I am thrilled to have good coverage for an affordable rate.”

    Monika Moss-Gransberry

    MKM Management Consulting


    “COSE helped my business this year by providing me with regular positive exposure in the 'Mind Your Business' blog. The articles I wrote showcased my content expertise in workplace communication and sales pitches and helped me stay in front of colleagues and clients. I even won an 'Apex Award' for writing from Lake Communicators for one of those pieces. So, thanks for the help, COSE.” 

    Phil Stella

    Effective Training & Communication


    “Without a doubt, I have met several new, unknown business professionals at various COSE events! This has opened the door this past year for me to have lunch, breakfast or coffee with over 50 new professional contacts. The ongoing referral value is endless.

    I have also landed new requests to provide presentations both locally and nationally. And, along with the pleasure of writing several professional blog posts, I was also given the opportunity to be involved in a COSE Member Podcast, which I thoroughly enjoyed as a new experience!

    If you want to meet me for coffee, breakfast or lunch I am more than willing so call me at 330-730-3524 and let’s make it happen!”

    Tim Dimoff


    SACS Consulting & Investigative Services, Inc


    Do you have a story to share? We’d love to hear it. Please contact Marie Zickefoose with how COSE has impacted your business. Haven’t joined COSE yet? Become a member today. Visit us online for more information.

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  • Next up: How to Sell When Selling Doesn’t Come Naturally to You

    How to Sell When Selling Doesn’t Come Naturally to You

    If you are a small business owner, then sales is a part of your business—for better or for worse. If you are not a natural seller, follow this advice to lead up to and land a sale.

    Your job as a small business owner and as a professional is to figure out what problem exists for a prospective client. Is the problem important enough for them to fix and do they need your help? If the answers to these questions are yes, it’s time to start selling. During a recent COSE WebEd Webinar titled “How to Sell When Selling Doesn’t Come Naturally to You” Rick McDermott of Sandler Training, identified planning tools that would-be salespeople should keep in mind when meeting with would-be customers.

    One of these effective planning tools is the “KARE Profiling Tool”. Here’s how it works:

    Keep accounts—these are the ones that do all their business with you. You are basically in maintenance with this type of account, and they are also known as your “raving fans.” Use them and their testimonies to help you acquire new accounts and even more raving fans.

    Attain accounts—these are the accounts you don’t currently have, but you’d like to. Make a list of who you want to go after. Who are your ideal accounts? How do I get in front of them?

    Recapture accounts—These are accounts you might have had previously, but for one reason or another you do not currently do business with them. It is important to have a strategy to go back and recapture these accounts, if they are ones you want back.

    Expand accounts – these are clients who already do business with you, but they could be doing more. These are commonly seen as the low-hanging fruit to growing your business.

    Focus on your fans

    Most of your focus should be on customers who are already in love with you. You must believe what you do is fantastic for your clients and have a process to show them that.

    Also, before you begin selling, make sure you understand the anxiety crevasse that exists between you and your clients. You need to be able to overcome potential clients’ fear, anxiety and doubt, and be able to deal with these pressures during sales calls.

    Every salesperson or company should adopt a selling system that works well for them. This is the process by which you develop an opportunity from start to finish. Whether that finish is closing the sale or closing the file, you must have a defined beginning and end.

    For Sandler, the selling system flows as follows:

    • relationship building;
    • bonding and rapport;
    • creation of upfront contracts;
    • finding a way to qualify people before giving them your intellectual property;
    • product or service fulfillment; and
    • a post-sell relationship or follow-up.

    Don’t give away your product for free

    Never give up your product or service before the sale has been made. Once you give your product and service away, it’s over. There may not be any reason for the would-be client to pay your or to continue business with you.

    Once you have pitched your sale, there are four positive results:

    • a “yes” response;
    • a “no” response (this is positive in the fact that you can now move on);
    • a response that indicates you have a clear future together, such as establishing a next meeting date;
    • a referral or introduction to do business with someone else; and
    • lessons learned (ask them what you could have done better and learn from their feedback)


    Don’t get between your prospect and where you want them to go. Don’t get overly anxious to get to the sale just because they appear interested. If you are way more interested in the transaction than the prospect is, that is not a good sign for the future of your relationship with that client.

    Miss this webinar or need a refresher on what was discussed? Check out the full replay below:

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  • Next up: Improve Your Business’ Online Visibility and More at the Small Business Resource Fair Oct. 16

    Improve Your Business’ Online Visibility and More at the Small Business Resource Fair Oct. 16


    Are you registered for the Small Business Resource Fair on October 16? If you want to get your business noticed in a crowded marketplace, you should be.

    Nachum Langsner—co-founder and CMO of LocalBizGuru, a COSE member—will be presenting a workshop titled Improve Your Business’ Online Visibility. As a small business owner, it’s imperative that you incorporate search engine optimization strategies into your marketing plan in order to standout online.

    The LocalBizGuru presentation will also provide expert advice on:

    • Why online reviews are important and their impact on your business and bottom line;
    • How to leverage your Google My Business profile to your advantage; and
    • What you need to set your digital foundation and beat your competition.

    Join us for a day focused on getting your small business access to the resources, support and opportunities you need to grow. Hosted by the Business Growth Collaborative—a network of 11 entrepreneurial support organizations in Northeast Ohio—the day is structured to allow business owners and their teams gain access to the specific tools that best match their unique needs. 


    Other topics that will be explored include using technology to drive productivity, content marketing strategies, product development and much, much more.


    The resource fair will feature:

    • An exhibit hall comprised of small business support organizations and resource providers, including Business Growth Collaborative Partners and other businesses focused on supporting entrepreneurs;
    • Networking tables where you can meeting entrepreneurial support organizations and discuss business challenges and opportunities;
    • Hands-on workshops focused on the most common small business needs, interests and challenges;
    • social media lab where business owners can develop their brand image by creating a social media presence onsite at the event on the major social channels of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram;
    • Complimentary professional head-shots; and
    • video lounge where attendees can film a 15- to 30-second pitch video to promote their business.

    Reserve your spot at the Small Business Resource Fair today!


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