PEO CEO Corner with Sean McConnell 

Tell us about yourself and your background before you joined the PEO industry.

I practiced as a labor and employment defense attorney with a firm in Tampa.  It was a great experience, but I didn’t like that I frequently found myself defending good people and good companies that made mistakes because they didn’t know better.

Please tell us a bit about the history of your 

PEO. Did you start the PEO or joined the company later on?

MBA is currently celebrating its 20th year.  I joined in 2005 and the rest, as they say, is history.

How do you explain the PEO services and benefits to a business owner who has not been involved with a PEO before?

I explain the 4 core areas of MBA’s business.  Human Resources, Payroll, Workers’ Compensation, and Benefits.  Ultimately, my goal is to make it easier for a business owner to focus on the critical inch of their business, such as selling the best quick service burgers in the business, providing stellar medical care, or a memorable hotel stay.

What do you enjoy about the PEO industry?

It genuinely helps business. Business owners are able to get advice and expertise from MBA that many would not be able to otherwise because it would be too cost prohibitive.

Provide three points that you feel would differentiate your PEO from others.

  1. Our HR Department is staffed with labor and employment attorneys.
  2. We are flexible with clients and will tailor our deliverables.
  3. We recruit and retain top-notch internal employees. Even though we are a big company, people enjoy working here.  Personally, I take pride in the fact we have been named a “Best Place to Work” in the Tampa Bay Area for many years.

What is your current opinion on the PEO industry and what is your projection for the days to come?

Growth? PEO business will continue to grow.  There are still many business owners who have never heard of it, and don’t know the benefits.

Threats? PEOs need to stay on the cutting edge of business outsourcing in general.  There is increased competition from non-PEO companies that provide similar services.  PEOs need to listen to their clients and respond appropriately.

What two or three things can a PEO Broker improve on to assist you in helping them to advocate on behalf of their client?

I like being able to turn around a quote to a prospect as quickly as possible.  The broker can make a huge difference in this timing by assisting in obtaining all of the information MBA needs to accurately quote.  Also, once the prospect becomes a client, I appreciate the broker being willing to help MBA if there are any issues or confusion on the part of the client.  It is a relationship business.

Who is your ideal client?

A client that understands that we have the knowledge and expertise to be an excellent resource for them.

A client that isn’t afraid to ask questions. Because we have HR consultants who are employment law and labor experts. We would much rather have a client that asks too many questions than a client that does not ask enough questions.

A client that takes advantage of the additional services we offer that ultimately save them time and money. After all, that is what we are here for. We want our clients to consider us as their business partners, their trusted advisors and their secret weapon.

Is your company active in the community or with a particular charity? If so, please describe the involvement.

For the past four years, MBA has sponsored the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. In addition, MBA sponsors the Firestone Grand Prix 5K Run. 2017’s 5K raised $26,995, and with an MBA match a total of $53,990 was donated to the St. Pete Police Athletic League.

MBA’s leadership takes an active role in St. Pete’s non-profit organizations. Our Executive members serve on American Stage’s Board and on the Board of Creative Clay. We also encourage our employees to be engaged in volunteerism in St. Pete. by offering our team members PTO to volunteer for an organization/cause of their choice.

MBA generously donates to many nonprofit organizations in our community. A few of the organizations MBA supports include the  St. Pete Police Athletic League; Academy Prep; American Stage;  Creative Clay; Moffitt Cancer Center; Society of St. Vincent de Paul; Humane Society; and CASA.MBA always welcomes the opportunity to serve local organizations and schools by donating to non-profits close to our employees’ hearts.