Upcoming Blount Partnership News & Events

Join us this Friday, April 22 from 8-9 a.m. as we hold a transportatin briefing with officials from the cities of Alcoa and Maryville, Tennessee Department of Transportation and Knoxville TPO.
And in more transportation news, be sure to save the date for Thursday, May 5, as Tennessee Commissioner of Transportation John Schroer will deliver an overview of the state and East Tennessee region transportation issues and projects at the Blount Partnership at 3 p.m.

Don't forget to take the Chamber's Annual Member Satisfaction Survey. Please take five minutes to complete it. Click here to access the online form
The Chamber Times tab will be published by The Daily Times on May 18. Inside, will be the Chamber member directory. Please check your online listing by April 22 to make sure all the information is correct.
Check out our 20th installment of The Dialogue where we visit with Nancy McBee of Tennessee Trane Energy Services, which assesses buildings for energy upgrades.
The Blount Chamber invites you to explore the ins and outs of the online community in Blount County with a seminar this Wednesday, April 20 from 3-4:30 p.m. Discover ways to better connect our local businesses with each other and ways to drive potential customers to your doorstep. We're also going to look at some tips, do's and don'ts, and ways to build your brand. The presenter is Nick Voyles of CSC Interactive. RSVP to Amy.
Hear from local experts on how to succeed in your local business. Attend this FREE business event presented by Dex Media on Tuesday, April 26 from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Blount Partnership. Free lunch begins at 11:15 a.m. You'll learn business-building strategies, tips and techniques from your community leaders, all geared toward increasing your productivity and business success. RSVP to Debbie Laugherty - 865.705.1762
Certain parts of the Affordable Care Cat (ACA) are in effect. As a business owner, you will want to know how this healthcare policy impacts your business. If you are confused about the changes, costs, or your role, you should attend this workshop directed at explaining the business provisions of Health Care Reform and the Affordable Care Act. Join us for this free seminarpresented by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Thursday, April 28 from 11 a.m.-noon at the Blount Partnership. RSVP here.
The Blount Partnership is hosting a Financing Your Business the SBA Way seminar on Thursday, April 28 from 9-10 a.m. This presentation is designed to show potential borrowers the eligibliity criteria and benefits of SBA guaranteed loans. Whether you are an existing entrepreneur or have given thought to starting a business, this seminar will put you ahead of the game in government guaranteed lending. RSVP here.
This is the final week to get your promotion in to the Blount County Chamber of Commerce as part of its Member-to-Member Promotional Program which offers you and your company the opportunity to market your products and services to the membership.
Here's how it works:
1. Submit a PDF of a service, product or discount you'd like to offer to the Chamber membership to jmuir@blountpartnership.com. Be sure to include an expiration date.
2. An email with all the promotions will be sent out on the final Monday of every month to our member database.
3. All promotions will be posted on www.BlountChamber.com
Please help us get the word out about the Blount County Job Fair by printing and displaying this flyer at your business.

Anyone looking for summer jobs, part or full-time employment needs to be at the Blount County Job Fair presented by the Blount County Chamber of Commerce, DENSO, Newell Rubbermaid, Staffing Solutions, the Blount County Library, Tennessee Career Center and The Daily Times on Friday, April 29 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Second Harvest Food Bank of East Tennessee building located at 136 Harvest Lane in Maryville. Click here for a list of participating businesses.
It's Your Career! That's the focus of the final free soft skills sessions offered in partnership by the Blount County Public Library, the Adult Education Foundation of Blount County and the Blount County Chamber of Commerce that are scheduled over the next five months.
With more and more millennials entering the workforce, employers have noticed many workers in a variety of professions are lacking in several areas, including problem solving, conflict resolution and critical observation. But, even though they possess the hard skills to get an interview, it's the important soft skills that will land the job and help them keep it.
All classes are conducted at the library located at 508 N. Cusick in Maryville and limited to 30 participants. Those interested must register online at www.blountchamber.com/community/soft-skills. 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.
Registrations are currently being accepted for:
May 20 - Mentoring
Did you know 46% of online users turn to social media when making a purchasing decision? As the new "word-of-mouth" marketing, consumers visit sites like Facebook and Twitter and expect to find real, relevant (and newly posted) content.
Here's some benefits to being active on social media:
1. Posting on a regular basis with links to your website will increase traffic flow.
2. Search engines like Google reward activity on social media sites, giving you more visibility online
3. The opportunity to connect with followers allows you to build lasting relationships without actually having to meet them
4. Promoting your brand through social media allows you to share your story.
Instead of wasting time posting separately to a variety of social media accounts, Save Local Now lets you do it all in one place. Publish a business promotion on your SLN digital platform and one-click share to Facebook, Twitter and Google+.
If you have any questions regarding your free digital marketing member benefit ( Save Local Now), your digital platform, or online marketing in general please reach out the Blount Chamber's Rachel Coffman. She is here to help you in the year ahead and will keep you on track as you fulfill your resolutions in 2016.
Think local first + Buy local when you can = Being a local!
Spending at local independent businesses also generates more jobs and wealth in the local economy compared to spending at absentee-owned businesses.
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, please email Ashlee so she can post it on www.SmokyMountains.org.
Also, please send us any news releases or good news about your business. We'd love to share it with the community.
"Bennie and the Jets," by Elton John spent a week atop the Billboard Music Chart this week in 1974. Elton John was set against releasing it as a single, believing it would fail.



April 18-24


April 18-24 -- Buttermilk Sky Pie Shop "Pie It Forward" benefits New Hope - Blount County Children's Advocacy Center
April 18 -- Southern Appalachia Studies Series @ Blount County Library
April 19 -- Blount County Habitat Women Build Luncheon
April 19 -- Blount County Wedding Professionals Networking Event
April 20 -- Area 15 Special Olympics Track & Field Competition
April 20 -- GAINS Computer Class-Microsoft Excel (Registration Required)
April 20 -- Mountain Challenge's Camp 4 at Maryville College
April 20 -- Building a Better Community With Social Media
April 21 -- Online Video, Free and Legal @ Blount County Library
April 21 -- Seder Dinner @ RIO Revolution
April 22 -- Toastmasters Club to Honor Clark & Horne
April 22-23 -- Spring Arts, Crafts, & Collectibles Show - Foothills Mall
April 22 -- Transportation Briefing
April 22 -- Planet Fitness Ribbon Cutting
April 22 -- Recovery Revolution at RIO Revolution
April 23 -- Bebe Salon hosts Beauty for Babes
April 23 -- Art on the Runway benefitting Fine Arts Blount and Senior Citizens Home Assistance Service of Blount County
April 23 -- "A Note Worthy Cause" benefiting the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society


April 25-May 1


April 25 -- Stewards of Children (Child abuse prevention training) by Blount County Children's Advocacy Center
April 26 -- Business-Building workshop presented by Dex Media
April 27 -- GAINS Computer Class-Microsoft Powerpoint (Registration Required)
April 27 -- Focus On Seniors: Medication Management @ Blount County Library
April 27 -- Rookies Class - Intro to Internet Searching @ Blount County Library
April 27 -- Mountain Challenge's Camp 4 at Maryville College
April 28 -- Coffee Club sponsored by Express Employment Professionals
April 28 -- Financing Your Business the SBA Way
April 28 -- Understanding the Affordable Care Act
April 28 -- Google Better: Internet Searching Beyond the Basics @ Blount County Library
April 29 -- State Legislative Briefing
April 29 -- Blount County Job Fair
April 29 -- Y12 Federal Credit Union - Ribbon Cutting - Grand Re-Opening
April 29 -- Recovery Revolution at RIO Revolution
April 30 -- Alcoa Kiwanis Annual Pancake Breakfast


Save the Date


You can access the entire calendar here to see other community events and submit your own.

The Dialogue

This feature is a question-and-answer session with a new Blount County Chamber member. So here we go with our 20th installment visiting with Nancy McBee of Tennessee Trane Energy Services, which assesses buildings for energy upgrades.
What does Tennessee Trane Energy Services do? We assess buildings for energy upgrades. All systems within a building which use utilities (gas, electric, water, etc.) are analyzed to identify ways to reduce building owner's utility costs. Our goals are to produce projects that will fund themselves over a specified period of time - typically guaranteed to perform.
How did you get started? I worked for two other major companies who had energy services divisions. I've found that a strong engineering background is the key to success in the Energy Services business. Numbers don't lie and this is a very objective business.
Who are your customers? While Trane equipment can be found in many residential sites, Trane's Energy Services Group works primarily with K-12 school systems, municipal governments, colleges & universities and hospitals.
Name three things you wish you knew when you began working at Trane. 1. How important it is to understand your customer's businesses - regardless of their facility needs. 2. The importance of electric rate structures. 3. The budget process for school systems.
What do you enjoy about working at Trane? I enjoy helping customers understand how they can make positive impacts on their utility costs by "small" steps, as well as big ones.
Previous Profiles:
Joel Honeycutt, J&S Janitorial Solutions
Suzie Cutshaw, JB&B Capital
Tom Klein, InfoSystems
Chris Woodfin, Spicer Rudstrom, PLLC
Rebecca Kiger, Home Instead Senior Care
Ben Hazel, Pree's Tree Specialists
Larry Parker, Auto Collision Experts
Jamie Weiss Photography
Jeff Jones, LC Fence
Steve White, White Enterprise Holding
Aundrea Scholem and Jennifer Madaj, Foothills Adult Care Enrichment Services
Wade McLemore, Paychex
Alan Baker, Crown Point Consultants
Shelby Avery, Avery Wealth Management
Kate Schriver, Schriver's
Elizabeth Ross, ECS Central, PLLC
Tony Saddy, Get Fit Maryville
Renee Taylor, CBI
Christy Simmers, Christy's Creative Cafe
Premier and Presidential Partners