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Chamber Up | A Tale of Two Entrepreneurs Championing Small Business Success

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Elton Hollis, III and Joe Tant team up for a program highlighting small businesses and fostering their growth in the local community.

In today’s fast-paced and often impersonal world, it’s refreshing to stumble upon a story that reminds us of the power of community, friendship, and giving back. Meet Elton Hollis, III and Joe Tant: two entrepreneurs with a shared vision of uplifting local businesses through their innovative “Chamber Up” Program. United by their passion for small businesses and their belief in the principle of doing for others, they’ve created a platform that’s making a real difference in their corner of the world.

The Chamber Up program partners with local chambers of commerce to highlight their members, no matter the size, and does so free of charge. The idea is to help businesses that might not have a massive marketing budget gain exposure, and in turn, thrive. Hollis and Tant recognize the importance of supporting small businesses, not only for the benefit of the business owners themselves, but also for the local economy. In fact, small businesses are often referred to as the backbone of the economy, contributing to job creation and innovation.

The roots of Chamber Up can be traced back to “Small Business Friday,” a weekly radio program Hollis and Tant started in 2019. The show, now a podcast, serves as a platform for small business owners to promote themselves and share advice. With over 3.7 million viewers and a presence on Spotify and 10 other social media sites, the program has become a go-to resource for entrepreneurs.

The dynamic duo behind Chamber Up is quite the pair. Joe Tant, a staunch advocate for small businesses and equitable access to resources, is the Vice President of Finance, Administration, and Education at The Greater Port Arthur Chamber of Commerce, among other roles. Elton Hollis, III, a respected expert in business growth, safety, and training, is the owner of Hol-Tech Resources, LLC, and the General Manager of RT Technical Solutions LLC.

Tant and Hollis both bring impressive credentials to the table. Joe Tant holds a Business Law and Human Resource Management Degree from Cornell University, as well as a Bachelors of Business Administration and Marketing from Baylor University. Elton Hollis, III boasts 26 years of experience in the Oil and Gas Construction field, providing Consulting, Training, Executive Coaching, and all facets of Safety Management and Compliance services to clients in the Industrial, Commercial, and Small Business industries.

What sets Chamber Up apart is the genuine care and interest Hollis and Tant show for each business they work with. They’re not just in it for the publicity or the accolades; they’re in it because they believe in the power of small businesses to shape communities and change lives. And they’re more than willing to lend their expertise, resources, and connections to help others succeed.

Both Hollis and Tant have had their fair share of successes and recognitions in their respective fields. Elton Hollis, III has been featured on the cover of various magazines such as Global Millionaire Magazine, InLife International, and Global Elite Entrepreneur. He was also named in the Top 100 Entrepreneurs in Texas by the VT Post and received the 2022 BBB Torch Awards for Ethics Award for Microbusiness. Moreover, Hollis has published two books, “Creative Problem Solving” and “Buy Into Yourself First,” which outline successful business development tactics.

Joe Tant, on the other hand, has devoted his career to advocating for small businesses, making a name for himself as the voice of small businesses in the area. Tant currently sits on several boards and utilizes the “Small Business Friday” podcast with cohost Elton Hollis to amplify the voices of small business owners. He is also a dedicated father of three daughters, Brooke, Ariana, and Jacelyn, and a proud owner of a yellow lab named Coffee.

One of the ways Chamber Up encourages support for small businesses is through regular events and partnerships. They’re teaming up with Atmosphere, a marketing platform, to promote events in Southeast Texas that drive economic growth. Some of the upcoming events include the Southeast Texas Industrial Contractors Golf Tournament on October 6th, 2023, and the Chamber Up Program with the Vidor Chamber of Commerce and the Sour Lake Chamber of Commerce.

And they have a simple yet powerful message for people who want to support small businesses: Shop locally and commit to doing one small thing for a favored business each week. It could be as simple as making a purchase, writing a review, or giving the business a shout-out on social media. Supporting small businesses each week will not only give you peace of mind but will help the owners and the economy.

Hollis and Tant are shining examples of what can happen when people come together to create something bigger than themselves. The Chamber Up program is not just about promoting businesses; it’s about cultivating a community where entrepreneurs can support one another, share their stories, and grow together. By working with local chambers of commerce, they foster an environment where small businesses can access the resources, advice, and networks that will help them prosper.

The “Small Business Friday!” podcast, which forms the foundation of the Chamber Up program, is a treasure trove of valuable insights for entrepreneurs. Featuring interviews with local business owners, experts, and advocates, the podcast delves into a wide range of topics, from marketing and finance to management and growth strategies. With each episode, Hollis and Tant continue to build a strong community of small business supporters and inspire others to join their cause.

In addition to their work with Chamber Up, both Hollis and Tant are also deeply involved in various philanthropic and community-building activities. For instance, Elton Hollis, III is a co-founder of the Golden Triangle Industrial Group and Vice Chairperson for the Contractors Business Development Group, both of which aim to promote business growth by providing project information to local companies. Meanwhile, Joe Tant serves as the Executive Director of The Port Arthur Education Foundation and the Managing Partner of Southeast Texas Business Referral Group, further demonstrating his commitment to the betterment of the community.

In their personal lives, both Hollis and Tant are dedicated to their families and hobbies. Elton Hollis, III enjoys exploring the Texas Hill Country on hiking trails and spending time with his children and grandchildren. He’s even written a song titled “Kirbyville,” which describes his youth growing up in small-town Texas and how it relates to his life now. Joe Tant, a loving father and dog owner, also cherishes the moments spent with his family and friends.

The Chamber Up program is a testament to the power of collaboration, community, and the human spirit. By dedicating themselves to the success of small businesses, Elton Hollis, III and Joe Tant have created a lasting impact that will continue to resonate for years to come.

To learn more about Chamber Up and the “Small Business Friday!” podcast, check out the following links:

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/@smallbusinessfriday6102
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/6tV2UBprNnW3iF4uMieBjo
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SmallBusinessFriday/

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Crystal Mance | Pioneering Pathways Through Personal Development

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Crystal Mance - Wellness Advocate and Personal Development Speaker

Embarking on a transformative journey in the personal development industry, Crystal Mance shares her compelling voyage from experiencing personal burnout to becoming a beacon of hope and guidance for women facing similar challenges. With a divine calling to address the often overlooked issue of mental and emotional burnout, Crystal has dedicated herself to advocating for awareness and support for those ensnared in the grips of this condition. Through her work as an author, speaker, and coach, she provides not only a voice but a solution for the silent struggle that afflicts many. This article delves into Crystal’s unique approach to coaching, emphasizing the personalized, empathetic, and holistic strategies that set her apart in a crowded field. Drawing from her own experiences and a deep well of compassion, Crystal crafts a coaching experience that is not just about overcoming challenges but about fostering a journey toward well-being, balance, and contentment. Join us as we explore the philosophy, techniques, and profound insights that Crystal Mance brings to the personal development industry, offering a fresh perspective on healing, growth, and transformation.

Can you introduce yourself and share your journey as an author and coach in the personal development industry?

Hey, I am Crystal Mance, and I help women heal from mental and emotional burnout. My journey as an author, speaker, and coach was ignited by a profound divine calling to share my personal ordeal with burnout. I recognized the scarcity of discussions around burnout, a condition that affects over 48% of women unknowingly. This realization fueled my fervent desire to become a prominent advocate in this realm. I am compelled to communicate, write, and guide, all with the aim of helping individuals identify and address their experiences of burnout, while also offering support to those who might be undergoing similar struggles. My ultimate goal is to elevate awareness concerning burnout and ensure that those grappling with its impact find the support and encouragement to conquer it. Through the sharing of my own narrative and insights, my ambition is to create a significant influence in the lives of others, equipping them with the means to reinstate equilibrium, well-being, and contentment.

In your experience, how do you handle setbacks or difficult moments in your coaching business, and what lessons have you learned from them?

From my accumulated experience, managing setbacks or challenging moments within my coaching enterprise involves addressing recurring hurdles that my clients face. One notable difficulty revolves around guiding them towards a candid appraisal of their present circumstances and the areas in which they encounter difficulties. Understanding the necessity of releasing certain obligations and making their well-being a priority can prove to be a daunting task. Many of my clients find themselves ensnared in a “Superwoman” mindset, hesitating to part with their symbolic capes. Nevertheless, I remain steadfast in my conviction that acknowledging these challenges serves as the initial stride toward recovery and personal evolution. It’s imperative for them to comprehend that relinquishing control does not equate to task abandonment; rather, it’s about instilling trust in others and fostering a more harmonious balance in their lives.

To facilitate their progress toward healing, I often employ practical techniques. One approach involves encouraging them to take stock of their current tasks and responsibilities. If they find themselves with an overwhelming number of obligations or need extra space, it becomes clear that our focus should be on setting boundaries and reevaluating priorities. This process empowers them to gain clarity, identify areas needing adjustment, and lays the groundwork for positive transformations in their lives. Through my experience, I’ve come to realize that everyone’s journey to healing is distinct. It’s crucial that I provide them with the necessary room, understanding, and time to navigate their healing process.

Besides your professional achievements, are there any personal values or philosophies that have significantly influenced the way you run your coaching business?

Absolutely, in addition to my professional accomplishments, several personal values and philosophies have profoundly shaped the way I operate my coaching business. Foremost, integrity is a guiding principle for me. I firmly believe in maintaining honesty and authenticity in all interactions with clients and colleagues. This core value ensures that the guidance I provide is founded on trust and transparency. Moreover, compassion for our clients is a driving force. Recognizing the challenges and struggles they face, I approach my coaching practice with empathy and a genuine desire to support their well-being. This empathetic approach fosters a strong sense of connection and enables me to tailor my guidance to their unique needs. Accountability is another cornerstone of my coaching philosophy. Holding myself accountable for the promises I make to my clients reinforces their trust in the process. I encourage them to hold themselves accountable as well, creating a collaborative environment that drives progress and growth. In essence, these values—integrity, compassion, empathy, and accountability—combine to create a holistic approach to coaching that not only focuses on professional success but also emphasizes the well-being and personal growth of my clients.

What makes your coaching style stand out in the crowded field of personal development, and what distinct benefits do you provide to your clients?

My approach to coaching is deeply influenced by my own battles with mental and emotional burnout. This personal history ignites a genuine passion within me to support others facing similar adversities. This personal insight not only distinguishes my methods but also enhances my ability to connect authentically with those I guide. My clients often see their own stories reflected in mine, which helps them feel understood and less alone. At the core of my methodology is a commitment to customization. Understanding that each person’s path to growth is unique, I carefully adapt my techniques to match the individual goals and challenges of each client, ensuring that my support is both pertinent and impactful.

I also place a significant emphasis on empathy. By dedicating time to fully understand the situations and feelings of my clients, I create a trusting environment where they can openly share their experiences and challenges.

This empathetic engagement strengthens our connection, allowing me to offer not just advice but insights that are sympathetic to their emotional state. My proactive, goal-oriented coaching encourages clients to define clear, attainable goals. Together, we develop actionable plans that not only address immediate barriers but also foster long-term empowerment and accountability.

Moreover, my coaching philosophy incorporates a holistic viewpoint. I stress the importance of nurturing both personal and professional aspects of life, advocating for a balanced approach to success. This comprehensive strategy not only advances their career but also improves their overall well-being.

Ultimately, the value I bring lies in merging these personalized, empathetic, proactive, and holistic strategies to propel my clients towards transformative, sustainable success and fulfillment. This blend ensures that their journey with me is not just about overcoming hurdles but also about achieving a thriving, balanced life.

Media Contact:
Crystal Mance
info@crystalmance.com
267-593-5451
Website: www.crystalmance.com

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Geek3 | Unraveling IT Complexities for Small Businesses

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Founder & CEO of Geek3, Erik Herrera

Established in 2009, Gainesville-based company Geek3 has been breaking down complex IT jargon and providing simple, effective solutions for small businesses in North Central Florida.

Erik Herrera, the founder, and CEO of Geek3 recalls the inception of his venture during the summer of 2009. Having nurtured a small client base over the years, he set out to debut a business that places emphasis on maintaining uncompromised simplicity in managing IT infrastructure, with a promise of “no techy talk.”

After deliberating between three potential company names and corresponding logos, Herrera decided to ask his clients for their opinions. The result was a unanimous vote in favor of the name ‘Geek3.’ Today, Geek3 offers a suite of services, including managed IT, cybersecurity, cloud services, and residential services, delivered by a team of friendly IT superheroes, who prioritize their clients’ success.

Geek3 takes a proactive approach to network monitoring and computer management at small businesses. They offer clients a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy using best-in-class services. This approach helps clients focus on their core business activities undistracted, confident that their technology is in capable hands.

In addition to business IT services, Geek3 lends a helping hand to residents needing assistance with a range of technology issues. These include WiFi, routers, printers, computers, televisions, and smart devices. An extremely friendly help desk system underpins Geek3’s service offering. There, skilled technicians offer remote support via phone, email, or chat, round the clock.

Geek3 places significant emphasis on preventing network issues even before they surface, ensuring the smooth operation of their clients’ businesses. This careful approach, combined with remote monitoring, helps mitigate costly downtime – which is paramount in today’s day and age.

Geek3’s current projects focus on staying updated with the latest cybersecurity threats. This allows the team to equip their clients with the necessary measures to stay secure. The company has also curated a diverse selection of IT services, from general IT services to WordPress and VoIP phone services, addressing different needs of their clients efficiently.

Not only is Geek3 passionate about delivering beyond-impressive IT support and services, but they are also passionate with their locality. Over the years, they have showcased their affection for Gainesville, deriving inspiration from the city’s vibrant bird population. The company even orchestrated a backyard bird camera to enjoy nature’s sounds within the office, a source of pride featured in the local bird store and Alachua Audubon’s Backyard Birding Tour.

Geek3 takes an active approach to shield businesses from data breaches and Day-0 attacks. They also offer disaster recovery solutions, aimed at minimizing downtime and overall losses.

Erik Herrera (founder/ceo), like a true tech enthusiast, interacts with customers and helps them navigate their devices fluently. His leadership style centers around empathy, trust, and growth. He proudly introduces a touch of humor into the workplace as well – creating an engaging atmosphere.

Geek3 is all about taking the stress out of IT for small businesses. They’re dedicated to smoothing out tech troubles and ensuring your business runs without a hitch. To make staying in touch and tackling technological challenges easier, they invite their clients to reach out via their website, connect on LinkedIn, follow along on Facebook, or tweet to them on Twitter. Plus, you can stay in the loop with all their latest news by signing up for their newsletter.

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Empowering the Next Generation: How Dr. Veirdre Jackson Transforms Education and Coaching

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Dr. Veirdre Jackson

In the realm of personal development, few voices are as compelling and transformative as that of Dr. Veirdre Jackson. With over two decades of dedicated service, Dr. Jackson stands at the forefront of educational training, specializing in trauma-informed practices and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB). Her journey from a seasoned educator to an award-winning author, entrepreneur, and revered coach in the personal development industry encapsulates her unwavering commitment to enhancing the lives of youth, families, and professionals across the educational spectrum.

Driven by a purposeful passion to advocate for the highest standards of education for all children, Dr. Jackson leverages her extensive experience with systems-based approaches—such as Trauma Awareness, Equity Literacy, the Resiliency Approach, and Positive Behavior and Intervention Strategies—to build organizational resilience and personal strength. Her innovative Relational Coaching model, rooted in the fundamental need for human connection—feeling safe, valued, and heard—sets her apart in a crowded field. By focusing on creating environments where everyone can thrive, Dr. Jackson not only navigates the challenges of her coaching business with grace and adaptability but also imparts vital lessons on growth, resilience, and the power of a supportive community.

Dr. Veirdre Jackson’s story is not just one of personal success but a testament to the transformative power of dedicated educational leadership and the relentless pursuit of impact.

Can you introduce yourself and share your journey as an author and coach in the personal development industry?

Dr. Veirdre Jackson embodies her deep-seated conviction that every child is entitled to unparalleled educational opportunities. As a distinguished author, educator, and businesswoman, she stands out in her field for her contributions to trauma-informed education and diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) strategies. With more than two decades of experience in education, she offers invaluable guidance to leaders of nonprofits and corporate entities alike.

Her expertise in adopting systemic approaches for enhancing trauma awareness, promoting equity literacy, implementing resilience-building practices, and encouraging positive behavioral interventions has fueled her drive to foster organizational and individual resilience among children, families, and educational professionals. Dr. Jackson is dedicated to empowering teachers, school leaders, therapists, and personnel involved in youth development with the tools and insights needed to transform the lives of young learners from the core.

In your experience, how do you handle setbacks or difficult moments in your coaching business, and what lessons have you learned from them?

In navigating the intricate landscape of the coaching business, one learns that the path to growth seldom aligns with our initial expectations. It is a journey marked not by ease and predictability but by the necessity for adaptability, continuous learning, and innovation. As professionals, we must cultivate a mindset that welcomes change, embracing flexibility as a core strength rather than a concession.

The pursuit of innovation should be relentless, urging us to remain open to new ideas and approaches that can enhance our impact. This journey is also deeply personal and spiritual, inviting us to engage in reflection and to seek guidance beyond our own understanding. Being attuned to and guided by one’s faith and intuition can serve as a powerful navigational tool in making decisions that align with our deepest values and missions.

Obstacles, though often perceived as barriers to success, are integral to our professional and personal growth. They challenge us to rise, to leverage our skills and resilience, and to demonstrate our commitment to our goals. Facing these challenges head-on is not just about overcoming them but about learning from them, growing stronger, and continuing to move forward with grace and determination.

Therefore, in addressing setbacks or difficult moments, the lessons are manifold. We learn the importance of adaptability, the value of continuous learning and innovation, the strength found in faith and intuition, and the transformative power of perseverance. These challenges are not merely obstacles but opportunities to refine our approach, to strengthen our resolve, and to deepen our impact. As we navigate these moments, we do so not alone but as part of a community of women who share a commitment to excellence, resilience, and mutual support

Besides your professional achievements, are there any personal values or philosophies that have significantly influenced the way you run your coaching business?

So, here’s the scoop: At the heart of it all, we’re all looking for a spot where we feel like we fit in. It’s like we’re all walking around with a sign that says, “Wanna feel safe, appreciated, and listened to.” With that in mind, I cooked up this cool approach called Relational Coaching.

This isn’t just about hitting targets or smashing goals. It’s about making sure everyone feels like they’re part of the team, that they matter, and that someone’s actually tuning in when they speak. It’s kinda like making sure everyone’s on the same wavelength, creating a space where everyone feels snug as a bug and ready to rock their goals. That’s the vibe we’re going for, and it’s what makes this whole coaching gig more than just a job—it’s about building a community where everyone gets to shine.

How do you differentiate your coaching approach from others in the industry, and what unique value do you bring to your clients?

In the bustling world of coaching, where strategies and models abound, our Relational Coaching team stands apart by embedding the essence of human connection into the framework of our engagements. Recognizing the universal yearning for belonging and understanding, we dive deep with our clients, guiding them in the strategic crafting and implementation of SMART Goals. These goals are not just about ticking boxes; they are designed to foster systemic stability, sensitivity, and a pervasive sense of safety within professional teams.

At the heart of our Relational Coaching Model lies a commitment to creating environments where every individual feels Safe, Valued, and Heard. This isn’t merely a feel-good factor; it’s a strategic tool. By nurturing such an environment, we unlock the potential for exponential growth, both for the individual and the organization. Our model emphasizes the development of a shared language around these core needs, granting team members the freedom and the framework to express their perspectives openly. This approach is instrumental in dismantling the barriers—often invisible—that deplete resources, erect walls, and sow seeds of misunderstanding within an organization.

Our unique value lies in this deeply relational approach, where the focus extends beyond mere professional development to encompass the holistic well-being of every team member. By doing so, we not only achieve the immediate objectives laid out by our SMART Goals but also cultivate a culture of mutual respect, understanding, and collaboration that propels the entire organization forward.

What are some of the biggest challenges you faced when starting your coaching business, and how did you overcome them?

Kicking off a coaching business threw a big curveball my way: the fear of waving goodbye to a stable paycheck. It’s like standing at the edge of a diving board for the first time, wondering if you should jump. The game-changer for me was a deep dive into self-awareness, recognizing the unique value I bring into every room I step into. This wasn’t just a pep talk in the mirror; it was about truly understanding my worth and the difference I could make.

With this newfound clarity, my mindset did a 180. I started to put pen to paper, not with tiny, timid dreams, but with goals that were as bold and broad as a billboard. It was about visualizing not just what I wanted to achieve, but the impact I wanted to have. This vision didn’t just give me a roadmap; it was the fuel for my launch into the business. By framing my journey not as leaving behind security, but as stepping towards making a significant difference, the path forward suddenly seemed not just possible, but inevitable.

Contact Dr. Veirdre Jackson Today:
Email: info@livingstrongllc.com
Phone +16105067056
Website: https://www.livingstrongllc.com
Instagram – https://www.Instagram.com/iamdrveirdrejackson
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/veirdre.jackson
Linkedin – https://www.linkedin.com/in/veirdre-jackson-ed-d-463236a7/
Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/@dr.veirdrejackson5474

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