The Colorado Small Business Development Center (CSBDC) provides management counseling services, technical assistance, and management training to small business owners and entrepreneurs in Colorado. With the exception of certain CSBDC training programs, the services provided by the CSBDC will be furnished at no cost to the Client. In the performance of their duties, employees and Agents of the CSBDC will have access to or knowledge of financial, statistical, personnel, technical, or other similar information relating to a CSBDC Client’s business operation or personal affairs. CSBDC employees, Agents, volunteers, private or faculty consultants, or other individuals that provide counseling or other forms of assistance to a client on the behalf of the CSBDC must avoid all possible appearances of conflict of interest in which there is personal gain or benefit to the individual representing the CSBDC; or in which there is the appearance that the individual representing the CSBDC is soliciting influences, favoritism, or leverage of any kind.
CSBDC AGENT AGREEMENT
As a condition of my employment with the CSBDC, I agree that within my relationship with any CSBDC Client will be in accordance with the following Articles of Professional Behavior:
1. Professional Behavior: I will maintain a wholly professional behavior and attitude toward those I serve, including other members of the CSBDC, Clients, and the public at large. By following the Articles of Professional Behavior, I will strive to avoid improprieties and the appearance of improprieties in my professional behavior.
2. Private Engagement: I will not solicit the private engagement of my services by a Client at any time during the term of the Client’s relationship with the CSBDC or me. Furthermore, I will not solicit or accept, or give the appearance thereof, any Gift, loan, reward, favor, promise of future employment, compensation or other monetary remuneration for counseling related services that I provide to a Client.
3. Client Confidentiality: CBC’s will hold as strictly confidential the identity of a Client, as well as all information concerning the affairs of a Client that is gathered during the course of their professional engagement, unless the Client has agreed to the release of such information for public use.
4. Client and Other Information: I will not provide any Client with information, data, procedures, materials or techniques that previous Clients have developed but not released for public use, without first obtaining proper authorization from the previous Client. I will not release information about any Client’s relationship with the Small Business Development Center, nor any information about the business or personal matters of any Client to any person or agency outside the Colorado Small Business Development Center Network without permission of the Client. I will not knowingly, without permission, use copyrighted material, proprietary data, procedures, materials, or techniques that others have developed but have not released for public use.
5. Conflict of Interest: CBC’s will not engage in any activity in which regard for private interest leads to or has the potential to lead to a disregard for the needs or the rights of Clients. CBC’s will not take personal, financial, or other advantage of material or information provided by a Client. CBC’s will not invest moneys, personal services or property in the business of a current Client. CBC’s will not accept any reward, fees, commissions, Gifts or other favors from individuals or organizations for recommending to Clients the equipment, supplies, and services of such individuals or organizations. CBC’s will not recommend the purchase of goods and/or services to a Client from a firm or individual in which the CBC or Agent has a material or financial interest. Further, CBC’s may refer Client’s to firms or individuals who provide professional services such as attorneys, accountants, insurance agents, bookkeepers, etc., only so long as the referral includes the name of three or more firms or individuals, and there is no private interest or the appearance of private interest between the CBC and any of the firms or individuals being referred.
6. Professional Standards: I will strive continuously to advance and protect the professional standards of the Colorado Small Business Development Centers.
7. Supporting the CSBDC Code of Conduct: I will support the CSBDC Code of Conduct by reporting all rules violations to my Center Director.
8. Outside Influences: I will inform my Clients immediately of any special relationships, circumstances or interests that might influence, or give the appearance of influencing, my judgment or impair my objectivity. I will offer to withdraw from the Client relationship and refer the Client to another Business Consultant whenever this occurs.