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Highlights from the 6th Annual Chamber Business Academy

This year the Chamber Business Academy went virtual!

For the Small Business Council’s 6th annual Chamber Business Academy, we offered five classes on topics important to small businesses on five consecutive Wednesdays via Zoom.  Did you miss out?  See below for a summary of this year’s academy and a video highlight real.  We hope the Academy will be back to a weekly in-person event next year and that you will join us for more great content.  Until then, read on to see what you missed this year!


Week 1 – Pandemic Prospecting: “How to See When You Can’t Even Shake Their Hands”

Our first session titled “Pandemic Prospecting” was delivered by Eric Shulman, a 40-year Sandler Sales Training Program veteran and owner of An Inside Man.  This session noted that, with the current pandemic, many things have changed in the sales world.  How do you make things happen when you can’t even get face to face with your target prospects and clients?  If cold calling was tough before the pandemic, it’s certainly tougher today.  What do you say and how do you even start a conversation?  This session demonstrated simple ways to get the conversation started and how to keep it going.


Week 2 – Social Media Marketing 101

For week 2 Kristine Zwick, Director of Client Success at Reach, shared their exact strategic method for creating social media marketing campaigns that convert for their clients.  Points covered included setting budgets, building an audience, and creating eye-catching ads that get customers to click.  Kristine has 12 years of digital marketing under her belt for brands both big and small, and is responsible for ensuring all marketing campaigns at Reach exceed client KPIs.


Week 3 – Ownership Thinking

The focus of Ownership Thinking is to shape employee behavior toward improving financial performance, improving employee engagement, and moving from a “me” to “us” mentality. Instructor Ray Watson is a Principal with Executive Leadership Resources, Inc., CEO Roundtable Facilitator, Predictive Index Certified Talent Optimization Consultant, and Business Coach.   He is a former owner/partner of a diverse list of business endeavors, executive with Fortune 500 companies, and Army Special Forces Officer. He has taught this popular topic at the Business Academy almost every year since its inception.


Week 4 – Payroll & HR

Brian Nagle, Sales Leader with RealTime Services, explained the benefits of using a PEO company that allows business owners and operators the time to focus on their company, as well as payroll changes, challenges, and concerns specifically for 2020.  Brian Nagle has 20 years of sales experience in providing staffing firms with payroll funding, administrative services, and strategic consulting.


Week 5 – Traction:  “The Entrepreneurial Operating System

For the final week we returned to a topic that has been a staple at the Chamber Business Academy every year.  EOS (the Entrepreneurial Operating System) is an integrated business system that helps growth-oriented leaders and entrepreneurs clarify their vision, gain traction, and get healthy in order to get control, grow, and increase the value of their business.  This session was presented by John King, a former COO & Integrator for a production company, who now implements the EOS with clients ranging from $2 to $200 million in revenue in a variety of industries including healthcare, insurance, construction, engineering, and legal services.


A big thanks to Old Town for sponsoring this year’s Chamber Business Academy!
For more information on the Chamber Business Academy, and to be informed when the Academy returns in 2021, contact us at cpilkington@kisimmeecahmber.com.


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