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  • 16 Jul 2018 10:00 AM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    As much as we seem to evolve and appear to have an understanding of the difference between 'knowledge' and 'education' there are still too many people, especially managers, who seem to confuse the two and who fail to understand the importance of each. Or, refuse to consider what, when, and where each one has importance.

    That's a shame because a manger worth their salt recognizes that the difference is critical to the success of their operation. Like everything, education and knowledge each has a place. Let's start by defining the difference:  "...education is a formal process whereas knowledge is an informal experience. Education is acquired through formal institutions like school, colleges and universities, whereas knowledge is gained from the real life experiences. Hence education is a process of gaining knowledge for some useful application whereas knowledge is facts acquired from good education, peers, consultations and extensive reading. Another difference between the two is that education is taught by the teachers to the students while knowledge is gained by itself or is self driven.. (differencebetween.net)

    Understanding these differences is crucial to maintaining the bottom line in any operation. Would you want someone on a manufacturing line who  understands and has experience with the procedure or someone who read about it in a book? This does not diminish the importance of education; there is a need for education in the right setting. But far too often people will diminish the value of knowledge for education. Manufacturing is a prime example but entrepreneurship is another area where education plays a backseat to knowledge. Just look at the famous entrepreneurs, like Bill Gates, whose contributions came through knowledge rather than formal education. 


    The moral of this story is embrace the knowledge of your employees. Collectively, their knowledge can change the face of your business and effect your bottom line.  

    Work hard be productive and above all else stay positive.

    Peggy White, Executive Director 

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce 

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info


  • 09 Jul 2018 9:30 AM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    I heard a story recently that reminded me of things that we go through in business on a daily basis and that we have to experience as individuals. The story went something like this. A man was walking through the woods and saw a cocoon. He noticed that a butterfly was desperately working to free itself. As an act of kindness, he wanted to help so he took his knife and cut the cocoon open. When the butterfly emerged it fell to his hand, flopped on the side and struggled to upright itself. It then fell to the other side. After several attempts the butterfly died. The man was distraught and didn't understand what had happened so he asked somebody about this. His friend said that the work that the butterfly does to leave the cocoon is important because this allows the butterfly to dry its wings, which is necessary for survival. This act of kindness eliminated the hard work of the butterfly and deprived it of that which is vital to its life. 

    This is a reminder to us that sometimes we have to suffer pain as an individual in order to be able to have the strength to move forward. That is the same as in the business; you can't cut corners, you can't avoid the risks needed to satisfy your customers, and you have to embrace the effort and do what's right for the business. Nobody else can do it for you.

    In business we sometimes rely on grants and the philanthropy of others to move us forward; however, if we forget to factor into the request mandates for our own equity the business runs the risk of withering and dying because of over-reliance on others instead of endeavoring to understand the true needs and nature of the business.

     

    Work hard be productive and above all else stay positive.

    Peggy White, Executive Director 

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce 

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info 


  • 02 Jul 2018 1:51 PM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    According to the Meriam dictionary, freedom is: 1. the quality or state of being free, such as a)the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action; b) liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another; independence; and, c)the quality or state of being exempt or released usually from something onerous.


    Think about what FREEDOM means to you and what freedom means to your business. What does freedom really mean? Does it mean freedom of speech? The First Amendment only limits government infringement on speech. The First Amendment does not give every United States citizen the right to express themselves however they would like, without fear of consequences from other citizens. Second, when it comes to government restriction of speech in the business world, it is also important to understand that speech in business is less protected than other areas of speech. Businesses are subject to consumer protection laws, trademark and copyright laws, regulatory agencies, employment discrimination laws, etc. How is this possible under the First Amendment? The answer is that there are many exceptions that have been developed by the courts, specifically applicable to the world of business.


    The lure of freedom in a business is that one may have the ability to spend time and money as seen fit. Financial freedom enables you to not only grow your business and pay your employees, but to also give your family the quality of life you want for them. Freedom enables you to invest time in causes that matter to you, whether that is with your family, friends or hobbies. This has all been stemming from a core passion afforded by the overall foundation of freedom that our country was founded upon.

    Work hard be productive and above all else stay positive.

    Peggy White,Executive Director 

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce 

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info 


  • 25 Jun 2018 10:03 AM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    How many of you own your own business? How many of you have dreamed of owning your own business? If you have ever owned a business you will understand what I'm about to say. If you haven't and have been thinking about opening your own business this might give you some reality insight into owing your own business.

    Opening and running a business is not for the weak at heart.  It takes more than just a good idea or a good product. You have to know and understand your financial model  before you can even think about doing anything.   Then once you understand your own operating model and what it is going to cost you will need to be 110% committed. By that I mean you will need to live and breathe that business 7 days a week 24 hours a day, 365 days out of the year. The buck will stop with you - if you need information about your business, it's up to you to find it. No excuses for not finding it you don't have time for excuses, you and only you will have to be responsible for finding the answers.   If you're lucky you might break even in the first year and that means if you are lucky. You have to take that financial model that you develop and then manage additional components of the business  that may include bookkeeping, marketing, advertising, networking and managing personal. Simultaneously. Then when you think you have it all figured out  - the economy changes and you have to start all over again repositioning  yourself. 

     Steve Jobs said it best, " I'm convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance."

     Let's applaud and support all the locally owned businesses  in our community that have survived and continue to be a viable part of our community. These folks understand what it takes to be in business for themselves.

     Work hard be productive and above all else stay positive.

    Peggy White, Executive Director 

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce 

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info 


  • 18 Jun 2018 10:01 AM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    I love when summer gets here and people have the opportunity to get out and take advantage of what the outdoors has to offer. Summer a family time and a time to go and explore new places. There is nothing more critical then to cultivate our minds as individuals and nothing does it any better than travel. Henry Miller said, "One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things."

    Nothing can change your opinion or bring reality to the forefront like travel. You can read about the beauty of an area and study the pictures but nothing compares to seeing that beauty up close and personal. There is nothing more powerful than to see or do something that you have never done before. 

     Traveling can give you a new perspective on life.  You don't have to go far to realize that every community has its own unique culture  made-up of smells, food, sounds, climate, and proactives. The differences can be vast; for example consider whether people hug and say hello or whether they never make eye contact. All of these things are uniquely associated with each community, whether regionally, statewide, or nationally.

    Summer is a great time to explore places and check-out what is happening in the way of customer service, display, new employment recruitment techniques... the list is endless. It's all there just waiting for you to take in and decipher whether it could  work for you in your business. If you are really observant while you travel, it can either make you appreciate where you live or it can stimulate your mind to look at how things can be done differently. The wise entrepreneur takes advantage of opportunities for new ideas regarding what is working in other places. You'll find some places are doing things that you haven't even heard of, much less seen. The trick is always to decipher whether you can incorporate that idea into your business.

    The next time you take a trip to somewhere new, become an explorer and open yourself to the culture of the area and see what new discovery's you can make.

     Work hard, be productive, and above all else stay positive.

     Peggy White,Executive Director 

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce 

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info 

  • 11 Jun 2018 10:00 AM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    When things happen in life that create a "moment of truth" they are called pivotal points. In our personal lives some of those moments may be events such as graduating from high school, college or trade school, getting married, having a first child, the death of a friend or a family member.  In the business world,  pivotal points also occur but the relationship of pivotal points is slightly different. In business these moments occur in terms of change in the customer base, change in product, sales approach or  new competition that has entered the market. Granted, in business it may seem less obtrusive since it is not about your personal being; however, there are times when change happens and the two mix. When you find yourself compromised personally,  it impacts your business relationship.

    I recall working in a high-end art gallery many years ago with a somewhat elitist customer base. One day a gentleman came into the gallery with some small paintings that you could tell he treasured. He wanted the very best framing for his priceless processions. I quickly assessed the situation and realized that our pricing was going to be well beyond his means.  I also realized that he felt by bringing the paintings to the gallery he was honoring the artist by giving these treasures the best care and arranging for quality work. I gently guided the man to take the three paintings and put them in one frame and to use the matting to create the separation. This would honor his intent and would be less expensive. To my dismay,  the owner (who had been watching and was fully aware of the situation) quickly stepped in and pushed me out of the way telling the gentleman he needed to frame them separately. This increased the cost by two times what I had proposed. The man was dumbfounded when the owner gave him the proposed cost and you could tell he was to embarrassed to decline. This was the owners intent. Here was the owner who professed to be an outstanding Christian taking advantage of a man for the almighty buck. This was one of my  "moments of truth". In my estimation, if you have to take advantage of someone to put a buck in your pocket,  then I don't want to work for you.  I gave my notice and left shortly afterward. The hypocrisy was to much for me to bare.

    Pivotal points are a  balancing act between keeping yourself grounded in the present and putting one foot into the future.  

    Work hard, be productive, and above all else stay positive.

     Peggy White

    Executive Director 

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce 

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info 


  • 04 Jun 2018 9:59 AM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    Let's talk about shopping local and what shopping local really means. In terms of the local economy, according to American Independent Business Alliance (AIBA), "...there is something called the "Multiplier Effect" which is the is the boost to your local economy that results from locally-owned independent businesses, owners, and employees spending business revenue within the region." In a number of studies illustrated on AIBA's site, 48% 'return to the community' occurs when you spend locally, versus a 13.6% return when shopping chain retail."  

     Shopping local is more than about just shopping. It is a mindset that says, "I'm committed to my community and this is my way of nurturing that commitment." Life is all about relationships and nothing is more personal than shopping local. You know the names of the people that work at the local pharmacy and they know you and your family, the fudge shop that has your sweetie's favorite fudge and it is always made fresh just for you. The local banks know who you are and call you by name, your banker will sit down with you and discuss your financial future because he wants your little Johnny to play football in college, you wreck your car and you call your insurance agent because he is your friend and you already have his number in your contact list, you call your local distributer and they are there to assist you in anyway they can to support their community. These are mutually beneficial relationships, and when the call go goes out for charitable donations, according to Andersonville Study of Retail Economics, local businesses donate at twice the rate that chains do to community causes.  

     Shopping local is a mindset. Not only are we developing awesome local relationships and adding to the physical financial viability, but at the same time we are reducing the carbon imprint and helping our environment. Think about the benefits of 'shopping local'! 

     Let's find ways to encourage one another to change our mindsets and shop local. 

    Work hard, be productive, and above all else stay positive.

     Peggy White

    Executive Director 

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce 

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info


  • 28 May 2018 9:57 AM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    This was from last year but I think the message is appropriate to share with you again.

    My younger daughter recently graduated from high school. As she reached this major milestone I was reminded by my older daughter's gift of how much we are influenced by the people around us. How much impact one person can have on another person's life. By now you're wondering what does this have to do with business. I'll get there.

    The gift my daughter, Hope, gave to my younger daughter Jordan, was the book by Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You'll Go. She asked the most important people in Jordan's life to write her a letter. The letter their grandfather wrote said all the things you would expect from a loving grandfather. But he went a step further and gave my daughter strong guidelines for a business manager. I'm going to share an excerpt with you:

    "As I progressed through the management ladder I found that while a degree was important it did not determine success. The most important quality to managing people was the ability to lead them in a manner that would implement and follow the policies of the company, so that the company would be successful and profitable.

    I found there are just a few principles to successfully manage people:

    Always treat everyone as you would like to be treated.

    Let them know they work with you -not for you.

    Maintain the highest level of integrity.

    Never look down on anyone-no matter their position.

    Treat everyone fairly.

    Always keep in mind it is nice to be liked, but more important to be respected, and this can only be accomplished by the example you set. All of these principles apply to everyday life."

    As I look back I realized that I have incorporated these values my father so eloquently worded to my daughter into my life and that both my daughters have been incorporating those values into their everyday life.

    Work hard, be productive, and above all else stay positive.

    Peggy White

    Executive Director

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info


  • 21 May 2018 9:54 AM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    Do you know the feeling when you see, touch and feel a newborn baby? You feel this sense of excitement that is wonderment and the amazing feeling of possibility. There is nothing like it in the world. When you see that baby for the first time, all of those feelings of wonderment and possibility just envelop you. It's almost that same as the feeling you have when you conceive a business. Your hopes and your dreams are all pure, untainted excitement about what this business can become. 

    I was reminded of that today as I sat listening to a group of ninth grade English students present, "Creating Your Own Business". Their thoughts were unscarred by society and not marred by politics or financial struggles. It was all the things that entice entrepreneurs to become entrepreneurs. Ok, so call me crazy for comparing human life birth to the birth of a business. But, there isn't a true entrepreneur out there who can dispute the fact that what drives them is that pure charge of raw energy. So, thank you to this group of ninth graders for reminding me of why people love small business.

    Work hard, be productive, and above all else stay positive.

    Peggy White

    Executive Director

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info


  • 14 May 2018 9:52 AM | Shannon Ainsley (Administrator)

    We just had our 18th Annual Golf Tournament and every year we use this tournament to highlight a program or a community challenge. This year we teamed up with the New River Resource Authority to bring home the message Reuse, Recycle, and Reduce. Recycling is one thing we can do individually to make a difference and feel the impact immediately. It has become a major focus for the Chamber this year and we will continue to use every available platform to encourage people to Reuse, Recycle, and Reduce.

    Join me congratulating Appalachian Machining on being the 2018 Chamber Tournament Winners and the recipients of the Traveling Trophy! Hodge Insurance placed second and Smith Wood Floors blank came in third place. 

    Thank you to everyone who played and who helped to bring attention to sustainability.

    Work hard, be productive, and above all else stay positive.

    Peggy White

    Executive Director

    Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce

    peggywhite@pulaskichamber.info


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Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce

4440 Cleburne Blvd., Dublin, VA 24084

540-674-1991

info@pulaskichamber.info 

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