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  • Pulitzer Prize-winning Author to Keynote Chamber & P2020 Annual Meeting

    by Lindsay Chambers | Sep 26, 2014
    jmeachamWe are proud to welcome bestselling author Jon Meacham as our keynote speaker for this year's Chamber and Partnership 2020 Annual Meeting, Wednesday, Oct. 1, at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.

    Meacham received the Pulitzer Prize for American Lion, his 2008 biography of Andrew Jackson. Executive editor and executive vice president of Random House, Meacham is also a contributing editor to TIME magazine. He and his family moved to Nashville from New York in 2012, and in March of this year, Meacham wrote an article for TIME titled "The South's Red-Hot Town," spotlighting Nashville's emergence from the Great Recession into new heights of economic prosperity. The article praises Nashville for its strong employment growth, low cost of living and thriving cultural scene.

    Please join us for a celebration of the accomplishments of the past year. Your support helps us fulfill our mission of creating prosperity throughout Middle Tennessee, and we want to share our successes with you. To register, click here.

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    Category: General
  • Chamber Board Adopts 'Yes on 2' Resolution

    by Adam Lister | Sep 26, 2014
    Yesterday, the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce board of directors approved a resolution supporting a consistent and predictable state judiciary. While trial court judges in Tennessee are decided through contested elections with multiple candidates, Supreme Court and appellate judges have, for the past two decades, been appointed by the governor and subject to a “yes/no” retention vote by the electorate every eight years. Despite a system that works well for Tennessee, there is disagreement around whether the Tennessee constitution allows for a retention election for these officeholders. That’s why voters, on November 4, will decide whether to approve new constitutional language making it clear the current process for selecting appellate and Supreme Court judges will be preserved.

    Supporters of the proposed constitutional amendment, including the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, have rallied around a campaign to encourage voters to approve the new language preserving the current system. Voting “yes” on Amendment 2 on the November ballot will ensure predictability and accountability in the state’s judicial selection process by preserving the right of Tennesseans to vote to retain or replace their judges at the end of their respective terms. Under this plan, the governor will continue to appoint the state’s appellate ...
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    Category: Policy
  • Trade Delegation Strengthens Tennessee-Japan Relationships

    by Blewett McInteer | Sep 25, 2014
    Nashville adds Kamakura, Japan, as newest Sister City

    Earlier this month, Tennessee Economic and Development Commissioner Bill Hagerty led a state delegation of 40 representatives to the 37th Annual Joint Meeting of the Southeast-U.S./Japan and Japan-U.S. Southeast Associations. The meeting helped strengthen the economic relationships between Japan and the states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. Japan is the largest foreign trading partner for the majority of these states, including Tennessee.

    The Nashville area is home to many Japanese businesses, including Bridgestone Americas Inc. and Nissan. Japanese companies invest more in Tennessee than any other state except California.

    As part of the visit to Japan, Nashville Mayor Karl Dean and Kamakura Mayor Takashi Matsuo signed a Sister Cities treaty to officially join Nashville and Kamakura as partners and formally solidify the two cities’ longstanding relationship.

    Kamakura, located about 30 miles southwest of Tokyo, is Nashville’s eighth international partner city. Nashville has long enjoyed strong ties with Kamakura and the country of Japan due to trade relationships and the Japanese Consulate, which was established in Nashville in 2008. A Nashville delegation made its first visit to Kamakura in 2009.

    The signing of the Sister Cities treaty, ...
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  • Member Spotlight - Sweet Southern Spirit

    by Lindsay Chambers | Sep 22, 2014
    Q: What's the best advice you ever received?
    A: The best advice I have ever received was grow your business slowly and do not overextend. Watch your cash flow statements.

    Q: What's your biggest goal for your company in the next year?

    A: Our biggest goal this year is to open a retail location in downtown Nashville. Although we have two retail locations and deliver into downtown Nashville each day, we want that presence in downtown.

    Q: What's the best thing about doing business in Middle Tennessee?
    A: The best thing about doing business in Middle Tennessee is the customer base. Customers are easy to work with, and there are several larger cities in Middle Tennessee in close proximity, which makes covering a large territory more effective.

    Q: How do you define success?
    A: I define success as being able to work in a field that makes you happy and satisfies your personal and financial needs.

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    Category: General
  • Selling and Negotiating For Today’s Marketplace

    by Stephanie Coleman | Sep 19, 2014
    Guest post by Susan G. Williams, Ph.D., professor emerita of management, The Jack C. Massey Graduate School of Business, Belmont University

    Selling and negotiation are inextricably linked, yet research tells us that most salespeople and executives leave value on the table when they negotiate. The mutual gains negotiation process encourages joint solutions and a well-defined value proposition. Active listening and strong questions are required for results.

    The Chamber’s Sept. 24 professional development workshop, Negotiation: Strategies to Build Your Business, will equip you with tools and techniques to:
    • Prepare for negotiations more effectively;
    • Focus on problems and not on personalities;
    • Avoid typical "win-lose" situations; and
    • Deal better with those who play outside the rules.
    In well-done negotiations, both parties are able to satisfy their interests and there is open, honest communication. Through deep understanding of customer needs and what customers value, you will be able to build larger, more profitable agreements.

    Competing on price alone is no longer an effective strategy in today’s workplace. The negotiation process must have legitimacy so no one feels taken advantage of. Building and sustaining relationships is key, but not at the expense of your business goals.

    Mutual gains negotiation is focused on driving positive results ...
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  • NashvilleNext to Examine Economic Development

    by Rita McDonald | Sep 16, 2014
    Middle Tennessee is growing rapidly, and smart, proactive planning is essential to managing that growth. The Nashville Area Chamber is a member of the NashvilleNext steering committee, a group leading a strategic planning process that will guide our city's growth through 2040.

    The NashvilleNext process will continue this month with a community conversation about economic development – how new jobs are created in our region, how we attract businesses to the region, and how quality of life helps Middle Tennessee remain economically competitive. Courtney Ross, the Chamber's chief economic development officer, will be the featured speaker.

    The meeting will be held Monday, Sept. 29, 5 p.m., at the Adventure Science Center. We hope you can be part of this important public discussion.

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    Category: General
  • Congratulations to Our NEXT Awards Finalists

    by Stephanie Coleman | Sep 16, 2014
    The Nashville Area Chamber and the Nashville Entrepreneur Center have announced the finalists for the fourth annual NEXT Awards. These awards recognize excellence in business and entrepreneurship in Middle Tennessee.

    The NEXT Awards honor companies and individual entrepreneurs in five business categories that are vital to the Middle Tennessee economy: health care; technology; digital media and entertainment; social enterprise and sustainability; and products and services. Individual awards will also be given for Entrepreneur of the Year and Young Entrepreneur of the Year.

    A celebration of these finalists will be held Tuesday, Oct. 21, at the Nashville Entrepreneur Center. Winners will be announced during the NEXT Awards event Thursday, Nov. 20, at War Memorial Auditorium.

    2014 NEXT Award Finalists

    Digital Media & Entertainment
    • Make It Pop Creations
    • Proof Branding
    • Talkapolis
    • Wheelhouse Marketing Advisors, LLC
    • DWP Live
    • Paramore | the digital agency
    • REACH, LLC
    • Snapshot Interactive LLC
    Health Care
    • Aspire Health, Inc.
    • Bernard Health
    • InvisionHeart Inc.
    • MedCycle Management, LLC
    • Applied Health Analytics, LLC
    • Change Healthcare
    • EnableComp, LLC
    • Sitters Etc.
    Market Mover
    • Cumberland Pharmaceuticals LLC
    • emids
    • Vanderbilt University Medical Center
    Products & Services
    • 6th Man Movers
    • Dan's Gourmet Mac & Cheese
    • Music City Pizza
    • Pfeffer Torode Architecture
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  • Your Feedback Guides Regional Transit Planning

    by Debby Dale Mason | Sep 15, 2014
    Guest post by Michael Skipper, executive director, Nashville Area MPO

    Do you take the same route to work every day? We often make this decision unconsciously as we run through our plan for the day in our minds. If you're like most people, you decide as you are leaving the house how you will maneuver through your community based on traffic congestion, construction, the stops you need to make along the way and time of day.

    The reality is that there is a strong correlation between time spent traveling our roadways and our overall quality of life. In addition to your commute to work, the other daily trips you take to run errands, care for family members or meet friends for dinner all create an experience in our day that either improves our health and mobility, or hinders it. This is why the Nashville Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) needs to know how to improve your daily travels.

    To gather this information, the MPO has launched its 2014 Regional Transportation Survey to gauge transportation priorities in Middle Tennessee. This survey offers participants the opportunity to rate infrastructure needs in their community. Additionally, the survey evaluates access to, or the need ...
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    Category: Transit
  • Sophomore Shares Her Career Fair Experiences

    by Rita McDonald | Sep 11, 2014
    A Nashville 10th-grader told the Metro School Board Tuesday night that a visit to last year’s “My Future, My Way” Career Exploration Fair was her first step in discovering the range of careers open to young people who want to work in the entertainment industry.

    Jennifer Gomez is a student at the CMT Academy of Digital Design and Communications at McGavock High School who hopes to study design and find work after high school which allows her to apply her creative skills. “The Exploration Fair was my first chance to really talk to people about doing design work in the real world,” Gomez told board members. “I learned a lot.” Her essay about her experiences at last year’s Career Exploration Fair won an award from Shoney’s and the Nashville Area Chamber.

    Gomez was joined by Shoney’s CEO David Davoudpour, whose company will be this year’s presenting sponsor for the event. “I’m happy to continue our participation for the fourth consecutive year,” said Davoudpour. “This event exposes high school freshmen to real career paths available in Middle Tennessee and motivates them to see the possibilities about their future goals, both in school and beyond. This also helps them to set their ...
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    Category: Education
  • Chamber's New Programming Helps Grow Your Business

    by Stephanie Coleman | Sep 10, 2014
    Guest post by Corey Davis, Chamber director of business growth initiatives

    business_studio_logoSmall and entrepreneurial businesses are vital to the Nashville region's economy. They are also an integral part of the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce – nearly 90 percent of our membership is comprised of companies with 100 or fewer employees.

    This month, we're excited to launch Business Studio, a suite of new programming designed especially for our small business members. Whether you're a brand-new solopreneur looking for ways to build your business, or a seasoned small business owner seeking ways to increase employee productivity, Business Studio will provide you with relevant resources that are customized to meet your needs.

    On Tuesday, Sept. 30, we're hosting our first Studio Session. At this event, we'll provide a "business checkup" to give you a full understanding of the key components of owning and running your own business. We'll start with the basics and touch on everything from choosing the right legal structure to certifications, tax and insurance liability, grants, funding, and even going as far as setting up company policies and procedures.

    For your assessment assistance, we'll also have a panel of experts on hand to help us gain a better understanding ...
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