Taltoan Helps Health Startups

LIBERTY TOWNSHIP, Ohio – All her life, Nakeisha Taltoan has wanted to help people. It’s what led her to get a nursing degree and become a state-tested nursing assistant and, now, to opening Keyes Business Services.

Using her health-care background, Taltoan primarily works with those looking to follow their own path as an independent home-health worker. She works with them from repairing their credit so they can secure the financing needed to start a company all the way through to writing policies and procedures.

“Home health is a growing industry but it has the most complaints. It’s almost always about staffing, when somebody doesn’t treat patients right,” Taltoan says. She notes the importance of having policies about how employees must act on the job.

“Just because someone’s at home, it doesn’t mean you don’t have to provide care. You have to treat them better because this is their home. Some workers are more relaxed because they’re at a home. But you can’t look at it like that,” she says.

Along the way, she’s explaining to her clients exactly what she’s doing, as well as how and why.

“I don’t just want to charge people for what I’m doing. I want them to understand what I’m doing behind the computer,” she says. “They need to know how to do it because if you trust everyone else to run your business, it can go wrong. I’m here to be an assistant, a helping hand.”

Keyes Business Services isn’t limited to those working in health care, Taltoan says. She’s open to working with any small business.

One misstep she frequently sees among startups is their concept of what goes into growing a business. To set them up for success, she works to develop business plans, possible storefront locations and accounting systems.

“If you want to be successful, you can’t just say, ‘I like this building in Boardman. I’ll get a lot of business because it’s there.’ You have to know the area you’re in, what you’re selling and if people will buy it. You have to have marketing skills,” she says.

“We start with discussing what your business is, who you want to target, what’s your budget and then we get into what they need to make it. I tell everybody that they need a secondary job. You’re going to have to put your own money into it,” she says.

Taltoan’s business experience began in 2019 with KMB Lawn Care, a business that she says was thriving until the pandemic hit. When business slowed there, she started focusing all her attention on establishing Keyes Business Services, which celebrated its anniversary in July. She doesn’t view the results of KMB as a failure, but rather as a learning experience.

“I wish we could have gotten a couple more workers because we had a great client base [at KMB]. … It wasn’t a failure. It showed me what I needed to do here,” she says. “It was a hobby project to see what we could do. I was amazed at how far I got it.”

This story appeared in the August issue of The Business Journal and is part of our Minority Entrepreneurship Week. Read about our diversity, equity and inclusion platform HERE.

Copyright 2021 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.