In January 2016, ScaleUP! Kansas City welcomed 16 local business entrepreneurs, one of them being TCD’s Principal/Creative Director Ron Michka, to its third cohort.

ScaleUP! KC is funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration and facilitated by staff at The Kauffman Foundation. The program provides entrepreneurs with tools and resources to take their businesses to the next level, with an eye toward growth in sales and profitability.

Ron applied for the ScaleUP! KC program in November 2015, and The Creative Department, Inc., was selected to participate in this elite cohort of growth-oriented businesses. Over the course of four months, Ron collaborated with 15 other business owners and received specialized consulting from local business mentors and subject matter experts.

“A big part for most people, as it was for me, was taking time to step back and work on the business, not just in the business,” Ron said. “Running a business and being good at something are not the same thing. I had to take time to make that transition from being a good creative director to a good business manager.”

A big part . . . was taking time to step back and work on the business, not just in the business.

He likened the experience to that of getting a “mini MBA,” as the group learned more about finances and business management strategies.

“Learning about and connecting with business and financial resources was very helpful. Our peer-to-peer roundtables were the best, as we all shared similar business hurdles and were able to share solutions with each other,” Ron said. “I’m so grateful for the ScaleUP! experience.”

Ron continues to attend ScaleUP! events and meet with some of his original cohorts over coffee. Members of the group share business challenges and exchange strategies for growth and improvement.

On September 21, 2017, Ron attended ScaleUP! Kansas City’s sixth cohort graduation. He heard presentations from most of the cohorts and enjoyed conversation with current participants, ScaleUP! leaders, and other alumni.

Congratulations to the sixth cohort graduates, and best of luck on your business endeavors!

Read more about Ron’s cohort group, here.

Find out if ScaleUP! is a good next step for you and your business, here.

Posted on: September 22nd, 2017 by Laura Uber


In the midst of Kansas City’s excessive heat warning, entrepreneurs and small business owners alike steered away from their usual morning locations for a FREE small business workshop at the Kauffman Foundation Conference Center.

Sixty entrepreneurs representing a variety of industries — personal trainers, spiritual wellness coaches, public relations consultants, and, let’s not forget, designers — gathered to gain insights for the same purpose: using social media for small business.

Co-founders of SoLVE KC, Aviva Ajmera and Teddi Hernandez, led an outstanding presentation and discussion around making connections and engaging with our communities through social media.

As we evaluate our digital presence, we want to be ready and available for our clients, our prospects, and our communities. Ajmera and Hernandez helped us critique our current strategies, showing us how we can better engage with people and how we can personalize and target our message for those who want to hear it.

If you are an entrepreneur or a small business owner, TCD highly recommends SCORE workshops. (We’ll remind you again that they’re FREE.) We’re lucky that small business are so readily supported and connected in Kansas City!

Keep an eye on us, and engage with us, as we continue to get connected with YOU.

Posted on: July 18th, 2017 by Laura Uber


It’s a partnership we’ve been cultivating for 10+ years. Since 1999, Académie Lafayette (AL) has educated grades K–8 with a twist: immersing children in the French language. Our founders, Ron and Angela Michka, began building a relationship with AL, the first public charter school in Missouri, when their kids started attending.

Now, we are in the midst of launching a new website with Académie Lafayette. It’s sleek, fresh and easy to navigate. In recent weeks, we’ve visited AL to make final tweaks, including any pertinent info updates and user experience fixes.

Photos | Johnathan Michka

Acting as the creative department to Académie Lafayette, we’ve enjoyed working side by side to ensure design is top-notch and content is useful and relevant for parents, whether current or prospective, and staff. We value our face-to-face meetings for the strongest communication and most strategic results.

Check back next week for updates on our AL website launch! In the meantime, enjoy some other great work we’ve done for them, including a brochure and branding.

Posted on: May 25th, 2017 by Laura Uber


TCD presents at Hogan Prep High School's Career Day

By David Owens


Recently, Hogan Prep High School in Kansas City invited TCD to join other community professionals at high school career day. Megan and I jumped at the opportunity to spend an afternoon chatting with high school kids about two of our favorite subjects: art and design. Recalling our own awkward years roaming the locker-lined halls of high school, we brainstormed several things we wished we had known. How could we use our 25-minute presentation time blocks to inspire our young audience and help them catch a glimpse of how they might channel their own passions and hobbies into a career some day?

We collaborated and built a simple ipad presentation along with a handout of helpful resources. Sharing our work with the kids was so much fun! They were attentive and engaged throughout the presentation with (mostly) relevant questions. We discussed how doodling on homework might actually be practice ground for young illustrators. We talked about how a future visual communicator could dissect and analyze different messages via their heavily branded environment. Most importantly, we left them with a piece of advice that we wished we’d gotten at their age: school, grades, teachers, and parents all impact your education, but ultimately, you must embrace an attitude of initiative and own your future.


Posted on: March 21st, 2013 by Creative Dept

The Creative Department is a proud sustaining member of AIGA.

We follow AIGA's Standards of Professional Practice and adhere to its principles of integrity that demonstrate respect for the profession, for colleagues, clients, audiences or consumers, and society as a whole. We utilize AIGA's Basic Terms & Conditions and Intellectual Property Provisions to maintain the professional practices of the design industry.