Business & Community Solutions

Supporting organizations through customized engagements


The Economic Growth Institute engages with customers to help them diversify, strengthen, and grow. Our model focuses on fostering economic development through customized engagements that meet specific needs, timelines, and budgets.

The relationships our staff have made with organizations they engage with and companies they support have often resulted in them becoming a trusted advisor of the organization. But where does this relationship go after the organization has completed one of our variety of programs? For this, we offer Business and Community Solutions to continue to allow our team to further assist organizations as they assess, plan and grow. The engagements are led by our experienced professional staff, with support from highly knowledgeable students. The experiences of these engagements provide the students with an opportunity to bridge the gap from classroom to real world application. The engagements give organizations the opportunity for our experienced staff to become long-term, trusted advisers and also for organizations to get a glimpse into up-and-coming talent.


  • Project Feature - Strategic Planning

Project Feature: Strategic Planning

“The Institute team did a great job facilitating the process and I was impressed on how well they were able to keep us on task, remove our bias in the final plan and execute in

  • Strategic Planning

Strategic Planning

When you ask the average small to medium-size business owner what they do for strategic planning, we usually hear: “I’m just trying to make payroll, we can't find the time in all of our schedules



Engagements are led by our experienced professional staff, with support from highly knowledgeable students providing them with an experience to bridge the gap from classroom to real world application. These solutions give you the opportunity for our best-in-class experienced staff to become a trusted adviser of your business.


  • One-on-one support from experienced professional staff with backgrounds including: entrepreneurs, executives, manufacturing, and business and economic development, that can offer “real-world” advice and resources
  • Our team has access to the universities databases and resources that can be utilized to derive quality data and decisions
  • All engagements include undergraduate or graduate student researchers who apply innovative learning to each engagement & may be future talent acquisition opportunities
  • Not only are you developing your business or community but you are providing real world experience for students to bridge the gap from education to real world application
  • Access into to the broad professional eco-system of the Economic Growth Institute including university partners, economic development organizations, and industry experts



We conduct objective research in the forms of customer discovery interviews, surveys, or focus groups to collect data to inform our customers initiatives.
We research the vast existing data sources available to us as part of the largest research institution in the US to develop market research reports, market sizing, segmentation and prioritization, competitive landscapes, and beyond.
We conduct research through our vast ecosystem of technology development to identify areas of partnership and/or collaboration.
We develop an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of current and potential competitors.
We interview individuals representing a cross section of current clients, new prospects and lost prospects. The goal will be to develop a fact based customer acquisition roadmap that will inform the companies lead generation and marketing focus.


We help our clients develop non-biased, innovative strategies that help them improve performance and achieve competitive advantage.
We walk our clients through a facilitated process to develop a marketing and/or sales process to meet their goals and objectives.
With our immediate access to world-class students looking to enter the workforce we can recruit, coach and pair student talent with companies for short or long term employment partnership opportunities.
Planning for the future of your business is critical to its success. Depending on the business needs, we can conduct a detailed business evaluation including a valuation of the company, a strategic plan to increase the valuation, and/ or arm you with options for successful sale or succession of the business. Our goals is to determine the most viable option for long term success of the business, its ownership and any action steps necessary to get the business and staff ready for successful transition.
We facilitate new technology development through collaboration between small businesses and experts, labs, and more at Michigan’s 15 public universities. In these engagements we evaluate skill-sets, processes, products, and initiatives of existing companies and search universities for technologies and resources to support the development of their objectives.


We help you understand your company’s value and develop a structured plan to maximize that value hence improving your company’s attractiveness to future buyers. When the time comes, we can also help you identify the right prospective buyers.
We will assist you in narrowing down the extensive ERP/MES/CRM tools in the market to identify the systems that would most compliment your operational needs and further assist you with system selection.
We bring an outside perspective to help you identify operational issues in manufacturing. We help implement initiatives to promote continuous improvement and suggest projects, when positive ROI exists, to improve operational effectiveness. 

We work to solve a problem where the root cause and solution are unknown in an effort to incrementally reduce cost, cycle time, variation or defects within a process.

We conduct a detailed assessment to understand your companies ability to adopt the quickly approaching digital manufacturing world. It identifies areas which need further attention and the possible impact that improvements would create.



We conduct customized asset mapping processes to provide clients information about the strengths and resources of their community and help uncover solutions to economic development challenges.
We work with public sector clients and their regional partners to assess strengths to help you determine your organization’s state of readiness.
We provide expertise to assess the practicality, opportunities (and threats), and resources needed for a proposed project through objective assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of an existing or proposed opportunity.
We provide public sector clients with deep and thorough market research to help drive strategic planning efforts as well as the development and implementation of new programs and services.
We collaborate with individual clients and regional partnerships to provide customized research and solutions to strengthen local and regional economic development.


We help our clients develop innovative strategies that help them improve performance and achieve competitive advantage.
We facilitate clients through a 5-step decision-making and strategic prioritization approach that allows organizations to quantify their strategic priorities and align their work with those priorities.
We assist client working groups in making decisions about upcoming capital allocation expenditures.


We assist our clients with the ongoing planning, monitoring, analysis and assessment of all that is necessary for an organization to meet its goals and objectives.
We offer clients a variety of training and strategic management offerings to help strengthen and support board performance.

And much more…let us hear about your needs a design a solution for you



Steven Wilson
Steven Wilson Director
Ashlee Breitner
Ashlee Breitner Associate Director
Parker Finn
Parker Finn Assistant Director
Niki Vick
Niki Vick Business Administrator
Carmen Wells Quigg
Carmen Wells Quigg Project Manager
Scott Jacobs
Scott Jacobs Program Director
Caio Talamonte Brandao Project Manager
Vikesh Chandrashekar
Vikesh Chandrashekar Project Manager
Stephanie Ludwig
Stephanie Ludwig Project Manager
Sarah Crane
Sarah Crane, Ph.D. Research Manager
James Huebschman
James Huebschman Project Manager
Jani Cooke Hatchett
Jani Hatchett Project Manager
Tracy Ross
Tracy Ross Project Coordinator
Kimberly Reid
Kimberly Reid Administrative Assistant
Paul Crossley
Paul Crossley Senior Project Manager
Kevin Rucinski
Kevin Rucinski Senior Project Manager
Carey Schoenig
Carey Schoenig Project Manager