Blount Partnership News and Events

Join us December 12 from 7:45-9 a.m. for the final coffee club of 2019 at Treasure's Jewelers in Maryville's Foothills Mall.

Wake up to new business contacts at coffee club. Coffees are designed to offer our members the opportunity to build business relationships with other members and to gain exposure for their business or organization in an "open house" setting. Coffees are open to anyone associated with a Chamber member business. Participation is not reserved to the representative(s) listed on the Chamber membership.
Put December 11 from 8:30-10:30 a.m. in your calendar and join us for the Blount Partnership Christmas Open House (201 S. Washington St., Maryville). It's the staff's way to thank all the members for their support. Food is prepared by the staff along with a visit from Santa and photos by Jamie Weiss Photography and her Gigglebox photo booth.
If you're new to the Chamber or just want to know more about your membership, then join us January 9 from 2-3 p.m. at the Blount Partnership (201 S. Washington St., Maryville) as Tammi Ford will explain your benefits and the many opportunities that go along with membership.

Then, join us for the first Afternoon Mixer of 2020 at First Horizon (1820 W. Broadway, Maryville) from 3:45-5 p.m. to gain exposure for your business or organization.
Habitat for Humanity's gift wrapping booth at Foothills Mall is now open until December 24. The booth is located near the interior entrance to Belk. Click here for volunteer shift times and more information or contact Celeste Elias (865) 982-8717. For group reservations, email:
The 2020 Basically Blount lifestyle magazine and membership directory is entering production once again. This annual, full-color lifestyle magazine and chamber membership directory is initially distributed to all Chamber members starting Feb. 2020, along with distribution four times throughout the year via area professional offices, newcomers, visitors, and new businesses all looking to relocate to Blount County.

We are pleased to offer a variety of advertising opportunities at cost effective rates through our media kit. We have contracted with Marcon Marketing Consultants, a local Chamber member, to handle production and ad sales.

If you would like to learn more about the benefits of Basically Blount, the importance of supporting the Chamber, and how to get your business involved, contact: Rick Ford of Marcon Marketing at 865-705-8580 or Vicki Hawkins of Marcon Marketing at 865-310-2963
The Solution: Greg Coker's Soft Skills Boot Camp

This seminar, held January 24, 2020 at the UT Conference Center, 600 Henley St. 4th Floor in Knoxville from 8:30 a.m.-noon, provides a powerful message about the necessary skills that will lead to increased employee effectiveness while boosting a company's productivity, retention and customer satisfaction. Seminar topics will include: image, importance of strategies, creativity, communications, project management, problem-solving skills, customer service, teamwork, conflict resolution, exceeding expectations and leadership

This powerful workshop is designed to accomplish THREE THINGS:
1. Define the gap in employees Soft Skills
2. Build the training for improving Soft Skills
3. Provide easy-to-understand tools to help

Topics covered: Leading/Following; Managing; Employee Engagement; Emotional Intelligence; Customer Satisfaction; Coaching; Change; Teamwork; Culture; Problem-Solving; Organizational Dynamics

Register today, Click on Events and the date of workshop. Fees are $125 for TN Chamber members and $175 for Non-members.
Finding and keeping talent continues to be the top challenge of many organizations. Learn the basics of total rewards, the psychology behind the concept, and explore and uncover alternative methods for recognizing and rewarding employees without breaking the bank. Make plans to attend our next Success in 90 Seminar on Wednesday, January 8th from 8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. at the Blount Partnership. The topic will be "Total Rewards: Creative and Affordable Ways to Find and Keep Talent" by Kurt Greene of Vistage.

Register online for this January 8, 2020 seminar held at the Blount Partnership (201 S. Washington St., Maryville) from 8:30-10 a.m.
Best Workplaces for Commuters (BWC) is an innovative membership program that provides qualified employers with national recognition and an elite designation for offering outstanding commuter benefits. Employers and developments that meet the National Standard of Excellence in commuter benefits can get on the list of Best Workplaces for Commuters. The application deadline for the 2020 BWC list is December 30, 2019.

Smart Trips has partnered with Best Workplaces for Commuters to encourage employers to apply for this national recognition opportunity. Our program would love to cover the application fee ($230 value) for our Chamber's members. If you know of any members interested, please let them know this is available until the application deadline.

For more information about the application process, please visit our website.
soft skills It's Your Career! That's the focus of a free soft skills session offered in partnership by the Blount County Public Library, the Adult Education Foundation of Blount County and the Blount County Chamber of Commerce.

Registrations are currently being accepted online at for a class entitled Creating Infographics for Promoting Your Business on December 13. Learn the basics of what makes a good infographic and explore free tools for making them.

All participants will earn .5 CEUs per session for participating. They will also receive an email survey two months after workshop participation to assess application of new ideas.

All classes are conducted in the Blount County Library's learning lab located at 508 N. Cusick in Maryville and limited to 50 participants. A complete class description is located on the registration site. All classes run from 8-10 a.m. with networking beginning at 7:30 a.m.
Take advantage of your Blount Chamber discount and protect you, your family and employees by enrolling in IDShield. IDShield monitors identity from every angle and alerts you to status changes immediately. It can also help restore your identity if it has been compromised. LEARN MORE
Blount Chamber members can now post their own Member-to-Member deals on this page at no charge. Simply login to your account, Click on the "New Coupon" button, fill out the form and click save. It's that easy.

Click here if you need access to your login information.

Of course, we will be happy to add your coupon. Just email information about the product or discount you'd like to offer to the Chamber membership to Be sure to include an expiration date.

View the latest deals.
Think local first + Buy local when you can = Being a local!
Find what you're looking for in the Chamber Directory.
Is your organization hosting an event in the community? Submit it here on our community calendar. If it's a tourism event or any good news about your business, please send it to us. We'd love to share it with the community.
Topping the Billboard Hot 100 chart this week in 1990 was "Because I Love You (The Postman Song)" by Stevie B. It remained there for four consecutive weeks. In August 2018 Billboard ranked the song the 71st-biggest hit in the history of the Hot 100.

The Dialogue

This feature is a question-and-answer session with a new Blount County Chamber member. So, here we go with our 153rd installment visiting with Daniel Best, CEO of CTK Computer & Network Services which provides equipment, managed services and most importantly IT solutions.
Why led you to this business? After working in the IT field for many years I was finally laid off from one of the best companies I had worked at when the recession hit. The company was struggling and went into survival mode. I was able to learn from the failings of that company and decided to start out on my own as a subcontractor until I was asked by CTK to join and later lead. Everyone at CTK has been amazing to work with. Simply put even though the work can be stressful I have a job that I no longer look at a time clock counting down the hours or minuets until I can go home. I love my job!
How did you get started? I started out with a love of taking things apart and putting them back together. With our home computer we had in the early 90s I would often upgrade it with things such as math co-processors, sounds cards, RAM, DVD drives, config files and operating systems. I new that I wanted to work with computers but college classes only offered programming or electrical classes. I later finished college when actually computer networking and administration classes were finally offered.
What is your background? I've gained most of my skills either hands on or providing IT support for companies such as Bellsouth, and Toyota Motor Sales of North America. Other companies have helped me develop the necessary management and soft skills needed to lead a team. I took college seriously my second time around graduated with high honors.
Who is your mentor? My wife! I would say my past bosses. For better or worse I have learned something from each of them and I'm very thankful for the opportunities afforded to me by each.
Describe your customers. Small to medium sized businesses with no corporate IT department. We have worked with companies with as little as 1 computer and as many as 200.
What environments impact your business environment? Theses factors affect our clients and us both indirectly and directly. Our job is to adapt and make the best of it.
Name three things you wish you knew when you started. How stressfull the job can be. The importance of word of mouth referrals. Even when you are done working for the day your are always on call.
What do you enjoy about running the business? Every day is different and the work is non-monotonous. Technology is always changing. Our clients treat us like family often inviting us to employee functions. I am very thankful to be apart of their company's growth and success.


December 2-8


December 2-31 -- Titanic Christmas & Winter Celebration
December 2 -- Springbrook Splendor
December 2 -- City of Maryville Tree Lighting
December 2 -- Southern Appalachian Studies Series: Memories of a Family Christmas with Jill Bond
December 3 -- Chamber Social sponsored by Airport Hilton
December 3 -- Public Stewards of Children training
December 5 -- Santa Mouse Christmas House
December 5 -- Festival of Trees
December 6 -- Pinterest for Business - Social Media For Business Class
December 7 -- Deck the Halls Wreath Workshop
December 7 -- "Tenth Watch: Maryville College at the Millennium Mark" Book Launch
December 7 -- Mountain View Lodge #519 F&AM Chili Supper
December 8 -- Townsend Christmas Parade
December 8 -- Reindeer Run 5K Road Race & 1-Mile Fun Run/Walk
December 8 -- Holiday Candlelight Tour


December 9-15



Save the Date


Chairman's Club, Champion's Club, President's Circle