• What’s the SCORE?: Create your own Customer Satisfaction Triad

    Eight years ago, the Roane County Chamber of Commerce asked me to design a workshop that would help members improve their level of customer satisfaction.

    I did over 100 hours of research to design the “How to Delight Your Customers” workshop.

    When I interviewed a successful small business owner in Knoxville, he told me that he and his staff focused on three areas: product/service, customer service and ambiance. It can be an effective tool for building customer satisfaction.

  • Meat House aims to introduce Chicago flair to Roane County

    Chicago is an area of the United States known for great food, and now Navardo and Genaro Esparaza are bringing that Midwestern flavor to Roane County with their new Meat House BBQ & More in Midtown.

    “We decided to come to this area because we think this area needs a good mom-and-pop-type business,” owner Navardo Esparaza said.

    “We have a passion to cook. We love the enjoyment of seeing someone’s face when the food is good.”

  • Staffers from Roane among Caring Hearts

    Alzheimer’s Tennessee recently celebrated heroes who go above and beyond when caring for individuals and families facing Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

    Employees from five facilities in Roane County were among 106 caregivers honored during the humanitarian agency’s 18th annual Caring Hearts ceremony last month in Knoxville.

  • Cracker Barrel’s Employee Food & Fun Day
  • Ribbon-cutting welcome for Humble Bee


  • Roane jobless rate at 4.4%

    Roane County was among 90 Tennessee counties who saw a drop in their unemployment rates for April, according to figures released late last month by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

    Roane County’s rate was 4.4 percent — a 0.4 percent decrease from March’s 4.8 percent. The numbers are much improved over the same time last year, when Roane County registered a jobless rate of 6.4 percent.

    It’s much the same story with the state rate, which was 3.9 percent in April.

  • OUT to LUNCH: Half of a half of Dean’s Big Barney pleasantly fills you up

    In my 2013 “Out To Lunch” article on Dean’s Restaurant & Bakery in Oak Ridge, I mentioned my wife, Carol, and I went to school in Oak Ridge, and are involved in planning our high school class reunions.

    Our most recent adventure at Dean’s includes members of our reunion committee. The committee is finalizing plans for a June 9 reunion lunch during the Secret City Festival.

  • Do you know me? Do you really care?

    “Do you know me? Do you really care?”

    I believe that this is one of the basic things that your customers ask themselves every time they interact with your business.

    Most of the time, it is asked subconsciously.

    It is a good way to differentiate your business from competition. I avoid doing business with companies that treat me like an inanimate object on an assembly line.

    For the past eight years, I have been conducting a three-part workshop series titled, “Getting Ahead at Work by Growing Your Value as an Employee.”

  • Kingston’s United Community Bank one of top in Southeast

    United Community Bank recently honored ten individuals and six branch teams for their outstanding performance during the first quarter of 2016.

    This recognition is part of the bank’s quarterly Sales and Service Champion program.

    The Kingston branch of United Community Bank, on North Third Street, was recognized as one of the bank’s top six performing branch teams throughout the Southeast.

  • Bacon Farms offers rustic event setting

    Rustic country weddings are a popular hit, and there is the perfect setting for such an event now in the neighborhood.

    Bacon Farms Barn, just south of Rockwood on Hwy. 27, already hosted one wedding.

    “Our son got married back in September,” April Gilley said. “We just liked the way it looked.”

    The barn features gleaming white tobacco cloth and white lights, a small dance floor and much more.