Thursday, February 28, 2013

Growing Your Business in 2013 - Good NEWS Bad NEWS

Guest blog post from Carol Ritter of

Speaking of traveling, I’m blessed to work for a company that brings me opportunities to experience the state of Pennsylvania’s businesses at their best and at their worst.  I’m speaking every Saturday in February in various cites throughout PA.  My audience is wonderful, caring, giving folks who truly care about their communities.  That’s the Good news.  The bad news is that when you travel, the experience of just getting dinner or a hotel can say the least, interesting and sometimes frustrating!

First week, asked the young hotel clerk for a local restaurant with good food.  He recommended the restaurant across the street (lots of high fat hot wings). Why did I ask?  I finally found a wonderful, well-know restaurant with a flare for buying local.  I went in and asked the gal a question and her surly reply was, “How would I know?”   I opened the menu and a different name was on the menu than the restaurant I was supposed to be in.  I asked,  “Am at the Rock Restaurant?”  She said, “No, just go out the door and turn left, they are over to the right.”  So I did.  If she was interested in advocating for her restaurant she would have said something to make me stay.  Bad news for customer service. 

Second week, had to leave early due to impending snow.  Hotel issues, they had my reservation but not payment from the company.  The clerk went over the top to solve the problem with the biggest smile on her face.  She must have apologized 10 times.  Good news for customer service.  Then...... dinner.  I was sent to a neighborhood place on the corner in a very run down neighborhood.  I went in and walked right out.... if you know what I mean.  On to the next adventure!  Checking my phone app for another restaurant, I found a beautiful quaint hotel with a lite menu, turned on the GPS and off I went.  I turned the corner and OM goodness, the hotel was burnt to the ground.  I’m giving up the ‘buy local’ so I decided to visit Red Lobster, 1 1/2 hour wait, I give up, just want to eat dinner.  I left Red Lobster and drove to a subtle, little Mediterranean restaurant, parked and literally waited for guests to leave. “How’s the food here?”  A gentleman replied, “Best place in town.”  My luck had changed. The hostess greeted me with a smile and I sat down to a lovely dinner with live Jazz music.  Good news for customer service.

The first question most people ask when looking for a restaurant is always, how’s the food?  We never seem to ask, how’s the service?   Most of us are in the “PEOPLE BUSINESS ” no matter what, we come into contact with the public while doing our jobs.  And people talk, I read that we all have 10 people in our lives that we love and trust, those are the people we tell about our Good news, Bad news experiences. 

The Good news is that some business owners understand and are committed to extraordinary customer service. The Bad news is some just don’t care and they will let a future customer walk right our the door.  Train your employees well and no one will walk out the door again.  NOW THAT'S GOOD NEWS!!

Carol serves as a featured writer for the Home News and the Lehigh Valley Chamber Blog.
Carol is an accomplished professional speaker, coach and educational consultant specializing in innovative leadership, outrageous fundraising, million dollar marketing, and building organizational alliances throughout the country.  Carol’s creative  leadership with bullet proof ideas for recruiting MORE MEMBERS, MORE MONEY AND BETTER LEADERS. 610-442-4545  Like me on  Facebook at Caroltalks and CarolCoaches!  Carol S. Ritter, Immediate Past President, National Speakers Association Philadelphia.

Job Opening - Membership and Communications Director at Brookside Country Club

Brookside Country Club is a thriving family-oriented country club located in the western portion of Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley, one of the fastest growing areas in the Mid-Atlantic. Founded in 1929, BCC is a full service country club with an 18 hole championship golf course and full practice facilities, an Olympic size swimming pool, 6 tennis courts (2 year-round), fitness center and extensive dining and meeting facilities.  Brookside’s mission is to create a sense of community among its members by providing the highest quality services and facilities in a long-term fiscally responsible manner. 

Brookside is looking for a results-oriented Membership and Communications Director to represent the Club in its membership growth, retention and relationships with members and guests.  In addition, this person will be responsible for communications through the monthly newsletter, club website and emails to keep the members current on events and information pertaining to their Club. 

This position reports to the General Manager and works with the Membership Committee to achieve the goals, objectives and strategic plans of Brookside Country Club.

Membership and Communications Director Responsibilities: 

I.  Planning:
  • Plans and implements strategies to meet Club membership goals working in conjunction with the General Manager and the Membership Chairperson.
  • Conducts trend analysis and offers recommendations and programs accordingly.
  • Follows up on telemarketing efforts, member referrals, leads from staff, newspaper articles, neighborhood developments, mailing lists, etc.
  • Determines which markets should be canvassed for qualified individuals to complete and maintain prospective member database in conjunction with the General Manager and Membership Chairperson.
  • Researches the need for on-going sales efforts in regard to changes in demographics, increased competition and fluctuations in membership levels.
  • Tracks the success of all membership recruitment activities.
  • Helps develop departmental budget for membership and entertainment.  Takes corrective action when necessary to meet budgetary goals. 
II. Membership
  • Produces membership information packets for distribution to potential qualified candidates.
  • Hosts prospective member functions and presents membership information at those functions.
  • Conducts tours for prospective members.
  • Conducts orientation programs for new members.
  • Processes all requests for membership.
  • Assists prospective members in fulfilling application requirements.
  • Develops and assures that established procedures for processing prospective member’s applications are consistently followed.
  • Maintains the Club’s database of member files.
  • Maintains past and potential membership candidate files.
  • Responsible for maintaining confidentiality of all member information. 
III. Committees
  • Serves on the Membership Committee, develops reports and provides other information as needed to the committee.
  • Interacts with the local community through the Chamber of Commerce, Rotary and other community organizations to market and network the Club.
  • Attends management and staff meetings as scheduled.
IV. Communication
  • Coordinates the development and production of the Club’s newsletter.
  • Maintains the Club’s website and mobile website.
  • Maintains Clubs member bulletin boards.
  • Maintains Clubs recognition plaques.
  • Undertakes special projects as requested by the General Manager.
  • Posts pictures of events on website and around Club.
  • Other job duties as assigned by management. 
  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • Minimum of 3 years of relevant experience preferred
  • Professional, enthusiastic, outgoing and engaging personality
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills with ability to deal effectively with all levels of management, co-workers, members and prospects.
  • Strong computer skills.
  • Exceptional creativity and organizational skills
  • Ability to multi task and meet guidelines
  • Willingness to work a flexible schedule
  • Be self-motivated
Position available immediately.

Please email all inquiries, cover letters and resumes to:

 Robert H. Anen, CCM- General Manager at

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Business News in the Lehigh Valley, 2/27/13

Good morning Lehigh Valley, and happy Wednesday!

PPL stated yesterday that the price of electricity for most PPL customers will drop from 7.769 cents per kilowatt hour to 6.935 on March 1. A spokesman with PPL said the change will reduce the bill by about $8.30 per month for a residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity.

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed a bill yesterday to legalize internet gambling in the state. The bill included setting a 10-year trial period for online betting, and raising the taxes on the Atlantic City casinos’ online winnings from 10 to 15 percent.

Air Products and Chemicals Inc. of Trexlertown announced it has won the second largest order ever for an air separation unit in China. The company has been doing business in China since 1987.

Allentown city residents will not be granted a chance to get a say in Allentown's water privatization plan due to an issue with the legality of the petition. The May vote would have allowed citizens to vote on selling or leasing any city asset worth more than $10 million.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Guest Blog - World-renowned leaders to speak at DeSales University

Today's Guest Blog post is written by Kayte Connelly of Best Principled Solutions.

World-renowned leaders to speak at DeSales University

 Simply Lead.  Community business leaders can access the knowledge and experience of world-renowned leaders by attending Chick-fil-A® Leadercast®  at DeSales University in Center Valley on May 10, 2013.

Chick-fil-A®  Leadercast®  is a one-day leader development event broadcast LIVE from Atlanta, Ga. to hundreds of sites throughout the nation, including the Greater Lehigh Valley Experience.  Speakers for this year’s event include:

o Jack Welch, Former Chairman and CEO of General Electric
o Andy Stanley, Best-selling leadership author and communicator
o Mike Krzyzewski, Head men’s basketball coach, Duke University and Team USA
o John Maxwell, Best-selling author and leadership expert
o Dr. Henry Cloud, Best-selling author and leadership consultant
o LCDR Rorke Denver, Navy SEAL and star of the 2012 movie Act of Valor
o Sanya Richards-Ross, 2012 London Olympic gold medalist, track & field
o David Allen, Best-selling author of Getting Things Done and productivity expert
o Condolezza Rice, Secretary of State (2005-2009) , via exclusive Simply Lead video interview

Last year, over 100,000 leaders from 14 countries attended Chick-fil-A®  Leadercast®. In its 14th year, this full day, experiential conference is predicted to reach its largest audience to date.

 “It is one of the single most consolidated sources of leadership that I know of,” said Kayte Connelly, Chief Solutions Officer, Best Principled Solutions LLC, organizer.  “But it goes beyond that. I think this conference, although very focused on leadership, transcends the topic and really shows you how to become more leaderful in your personal lives.  We have a dedicated team designing a memorable experience for the Greater Lehigh Valley on May 10.”

This year our program will focus on the idea of simply leading. Our lives are full of things that we think will grow our businesses and increase our influence. What if there was potential impact in simplifying our lives so that our leadership could thrive? Leading in a complex world requires simplicity to cut through the clutter. This diverse group of internationally-acclaimed authors, leadership experts and practitioners will share insights to help leaders learn how to Simply Lead.

For more information about Chick-fil-A®  Leadercast® and local ticketing information For additional information, call 484.769.2327 or contact

Monday, February 25, 2013

Tonight on Business Matters - 2/25/13

on WFMZ - Monday at 7:30 p.m.

Tonight on Business Matters: Immigration:  Do you believe in amnesty or building a wall? 

Tune in to Business Matters tonight on WFMZ at 7:30 p.m. to hear from our lively panelists on how President Obama’s proposed immigration reform would effect our nation.

Is the proposed immigration reform (or earned legalization) essentially rewarding people who broke a law? If some form of amnesty was granted to the 11 million illegal immigrants tomorrow, what effects would it have on the economy? Are we taking the necessary time to learn from past immigration reform efforts so we don’t repeat past mistakes as a nation? Should we be looking at a piece mail approach rather than a comprehensive plan that President Obama is proposing?

Join host Tony Iannelli and guests:
o   John Morganelli - Northampton County District Attorney
o   Matthew Braccili - Owner of Hola! Spanish Radio Network
o   Ron Angle- Lehigh Valley Conservative
o   Kevin Santos, Esq.- Santos Law Group
o   Michael W. Cutler - Retired Senior Special Agent Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS)

Job Opening - Business Development Manager at The Performance Group

The Performance Group seeks a Business Development Manager

The Performance Group, one of the Fastest Growing Staffing Companies, voted by Staffing Industry Review Magazine, is looking for a Business Development Manager. The person in this position should be a self-motivated, energetic individual willing to travel within the Lehigh Valley. The person in this role will be responsible for maintaining existing client relationships and developing new leads through strategic marketing efforts, cold-calling, and further developing existing client/vendor relationships. The person will attend various networking events including: chamber of commerce and industry events, career fairs, business expos and community events.

The person will also be responsible for setting up and negotiating contracts. We are looking for a dynamic individual with relevant experience including business to business sales and a proven performance record in sales. Staffing industry experience is a plus and would be preferred. We offer competitive compensation & benefits with an aggressive commission and bonus plan.

For consideration, send resumes to

Friday, February 22, 2013

Business News in the Lehigh Valley, 2/21/13

Good morning, but more importantly Happy Friday, Lehigh Valley! It's hard to believe we're almost through February already. Here's a quick recap of news that you may have missed in the last few days.

The Allentown Arena now has an official name, following an announcement held yesterday. "PPL Center" will be the name of the Lehigh Valley Phantoms arena in downtown Allentown. From the article on -  "George Lewis, director of corporate communications for PPL, said the investment was part of an ongoing commitment to economic development in the city's downtown. "PPL has been in the downtown since it was founded in 1920," he said. "We have an interest in promoting Allentown, where we are located and where many of our employees live."

The Children's Hospital at Lehigh Valley Hospital - Cedar Crest has been named as the beneficiary of the 2013 Lehigh Valley Auto Show Gala proceeds. Tickets for the gala are priced at $75 each or $125 for couples. For more information, click here.

The Chamber held its monthly Signature Networking Event last night at Hotel Bethlehem, immediately following the monthly New Member Orientation. The networking event drew a crowd of about 200 business professionals to 1741 on the Terrace in the hotel. Thanks to all who came out! Next month's will be held at Shula's - American Steak House in Center Valley.

That's all for now, check in later and have a great Friday!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Business News in the Lehigh Valley, 2/19/13

Good morning Lehigh Valley, and happy Tuesday. You got through Monday, so give yourself a pat on the back.

City Center Lehigh Valley has hired Sheila Johnson, former vice president of Berks Economic Partnership and PPL Economic Development Director, in an effort to attract out-of-area businesses to Downtown Allentown. City Center Lehigh Valley will construct two high-rise office buildings adjacent to Allentown's arena at Seventh and Hamilton streets.

Bethlehem's ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks is in the running for another top international architecture award, as a top five finalist in the urban transformation category for the Architizer A+ Awards. Votes can be submitted through March 19 by following this link.

Pennsylvania's new Attorney General has stated that Governor Corbett's proposal to privatize the lottery is not within his authority, but rather it rests with state legislature. She also said she reviewed the constitutionality of the proposal, "not the validity or business wisdom of it."

That's all for now - here's hoping everyone has a productive day today!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Allentown Chamber of Commerce - February Letter from the President

This article originally appeared in the February issue of The Chamber's monthly publication, Connections. Written by:
Bob Buck
Buckno, Lisicky & Company
Allentown Chamber President
610-821-8580 •

Can we really handle the change? Downtown Allentown will be a vastly different place in a few years. I recently found a poster from years back, depicting various cultural and commercial highlights of our city. It brought back nostalgia for a time when the center of the city was a very much a sought after destination. About the same time, I also found an old board game (remember those?) called “All About Allentown.” I instantly recalled having to navigate the multitude of one-way streets and having loop ‘round and ‘round to get from Zollinger’s to the First National Bank, then from Leh’s over to Hess’s as my pretend car traveled downtown.

Today, very few of those highlights remain. There is PPL (or PP&L!), of course, the soldiers and sailors monument, the Liberty Bell Shrine at Zion’s  Reformed Church, Allentown Art Museum and Symphony Hall, and not much else. As I talk to many in the business community about the excitement of crowds and increased traffic soon returning to downtown, there is much trepidation and concern as to traffic flow and parking. Well, let’s look a little closer at that old poster and game.

There are all of those two, three, and even four lane one-way streets - very annoying for a kid’s board game - but very efficient for moving large amounts of traffic. Coupled with the new American Parkway Bridge, entry and egress should be a breeze. And although the gleaming Hess’s department store no longer remains, that unusual snail-shell object attached to it surely does. That’s the parking deck with its 700-plus spaces which combined with newly erected parking as well as existing decks at the transportation and government center to provide a glut of available parking for the new offices, residential units and arena.

How easy it is to forget the large amounts of people working and shopping in center city just a short time ago. Maybe the glamour of a world-class department store is gone, but the hold-overs from the city’s past glory days remain, and we’ll soon welcome many new visitors into Allentown. These are the good old days!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Express Business Center - Member of the Day

Today's Member of the Day is Express Business Center, a proud and active Chamber member since 2007. I've known Murtaza Jaffer, the owner of Express Business Center (EBC), since I started working at the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce and ever since I have been meaning to visit and take a tour of their facility. I had been told multiple times that Andrea Hemphill, their Director of Development, made a delicious cup of coffee, and I finally found the time to see for myself.

Andrea makes a delicious cup of coffee!
EBC is located in Trexlertown at 6900 Hamilton Boulevard. At first glance it looks like your standard pack and ship store, but once I was inside I realized how wrong I was. The facility was much more advanced than I expected. In addition to their print and copy services that they offer in the front of the store, they had a whole back room filled with these enormous printers. Murtaza showed me drawers full of client work that they fulfilled while Andrea made me a cup of her 'famous coffee.' It certainly lived up to the expectations, and I have been dreaming of that coffee ever since. Unfortunately, she didn't tell me the secret to how she made it though, so you're going to have to head on over and try it for  yourself.

In addition to their full-service packaging and shipping operations in the front of the facility, they offer high speed color copying and printing, laminating, notary services, photo developing (through Dan's Camera, another great Chamber member), and even income tax preparation! They are seriously a one-stop shop for everything. While I was there they were in the middle of printing hundreds of blank coloring pages for an order through Red Robin. Side note - I really love to see all these Chamber members working together!

As I was talking to Andrea in the front of the store, Murtaza rushed out of the back and said he had to show me something. Their banner printer (Yes, they print full-size banners too) was in the middle of printing this hockey banner on canvas. They have the capability of printing banners five feet wide in amazingly clear detail. If you need anything printed that you can't do in house, do yourself a favor and go visit Murtaza and Andrea over at EBC to see what they offer. They are both great people and are usually in attendance at many of the Chamber events we hold. If you'd like an introduction, I'd be happy to help. Thanks for the hospitality Express Business Center, and I'm glad I finally had the chance to visit.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Difference Between Hypnotherapy and Hypnosis - Guest Blog Post

Today's Member of the Day is Susan Toohey Counseling, LLC. Susan has provided us with a guest blog for her two free upcoming information sessions. More information below.

Hypnotherapy Can Help You Lose Weight or Quit Smoking for Good!   
               Is it different from hypnosis?
Two Free Informational Sessions and Courses Announced

The fresh start of a New Year makes many of us resolve to take charge and make positive changes in our lives.   We all have our various vices, such as overeating or smoking, and January often finds us vowing to take them on - once and for all!

Did the stroke of midnight find you pledging to live a healthier lifestyle again this year? Vowing to finally address your smoking addiction before the new health care regulations that will penalize smokers kick in? Perhaps you wanted to lose those extra pounds by exercising regularly or cutting out some extra calories?

Well, February is upon us. How are you doing with that? What have you accomplished? Did you achieve any of your goals? Often our good intentions and determination fizzles out about now, if it hasn’t already abandoned us. We realize that it’s hard to make permanent lifestyle changes on our own, even if they are good for us. Perhaps some help in the form of a new approach is in order if you are to truly succeed with your goals this year.

Have you considered Hypnosis? No, not the “bark like a dog,” carnival amusement kind! Hypnosis can be a powerful means for instituting positive change in your life. It can be extremely effective when used for weight loss and smoking cessation as well as for addressing trauma, or emotional issues like those you would address with a psychotherapist as well. It is however, important to be an informed consumer if you are considering its use.

There is a difference between hypnosis and clinical hypnotherapy. Only licensed mental health professionals may become certified as clinical hypnotherapists and perform hypnotherapy.  This includes psychiatrists, psychologists, professional counselors, social workers and other healers such as nurses.   

Why is this distinction made since both hypnotism and clinical hypnotherapy induce clients into a hypnotic state?  The difference is that only mental health professionals have the special training and licensure to perform psychotherapy when clients are in a hypnotic induced state.  They can help their clients deal with the core emotions underlying the thoughts that produce the unwanted behavior or DIS-EASE.   

Only 10% of the brain is responsible for conscious thought. The remaining 90% is the subconscious part. It is there that repressed emotions, feelings, and sensations are stored as we go through life.  We compartmentalize and repress unpleasant emotions and feelings related to our experiences. 
Hypnosis is defined as a treatment intervention, comprised of inducing the client into a relaxed, suggestible state and then offering post-hypnotic suggestions for relief from symptoms.

Hypnotherapy is the process of providing psychotherapy with a client who is in the hypnotic altered state of consciousness. The clinical hypnotherapist’s approach delves farther into the subconscious, and includes addressing emotions, sensations, beliefs and values.  

Slowly, mainstream western medicine is recognizing the amazing results that can occur through the use of clinical hypnotherapy.  The Integrative Medicine Department at the world-renowned Cleveland Clinic has endorsed heart-centered hypnotherapy as part of their holistic approach to treat patients as the whole persons we are, by addressing the mind, body and spirit.

Trained mental health practitioners who are certified as heart-centered hypnotherapists, realize that is where we need to focus our attention as mental health professionals. Their treatment focuses on the emotional basis for our addictions and issues that affect our daily lives. 

There are effective hypnotists who can effectively induce a client to the trance state so that the subconscious mind can accept suggestions for change, but that is the extent of the treatment.  The clinical hypnotherapist can go beyond suggestions in the hypnotic trance and get to the underlying causes of addictions, conditions and thoughts through psychotherapy, providing the avenue to freedom from unwanted behaviors and thoughts. 

Susan Toohey is a Licensed Professional Counselor in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, a National Certified Counselor and a graduate of Lehigh University’s Master’s Program in Counseling and Human Services.  She is a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist through The Wellness Institute’s Heart-Centered Hypnotherapy Center in Issaquah, Washington.

Susan is offering TRIM-LIFE, a  4 week Weight-Loss program starting March7th 6:30-9:30 and BREAK FREE, a 4 week Smoking Cessation program starting March 5th 6:30-8:30 at Central Penn College, in Bethlehem, PA.  The deadline for registration is February 28th.

Join her for a Free Informational Session on February 19th or 26th at 7pm at Central Penn College, Ste. 202, 1455 Valley Center Parkway in Bethlehem, PA where you can meet Susan, ask questions to learn more about clinical hypnotherapy and hypnosis, what it is like to be hypnotized, and why this treatment is effective at treating eating and smoking addictions. Call Susan at 610-217-5864 for more information or e-mail her at   Also check out Susan’s website at for information about her background and her practice.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Easton & Phillipsburg Initiatives Intern

The Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce is Seeking an Easton & Phillipsburg Initiatives Intern

The Easton Area Chamber of Commerce and the Phillipsburg Area Chamber of Commerce, both part of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce, are councils of businesses and individuals that work to improve the economic conditions and enhance the quality of life in the Easton & Phillipsburg areas through involvement with community organizations and the programming of special events. Aspects of this position include database management, event planning, advertising, public relations and networking with the Easton area business community.

An intern in this position would assist with planning and executing activities and events to further the growth and development of the Easton and Phillipsburg areas.
  •          Upbeat, energetic, willing to meet new people and take on new projects.
  •          Event planning assistance
  •          Have a strong computer background, including the use of Office and the willingness/adaptability to learn new programs.
  •          Outbound phone calls to members or potential vendors for events
  •          Basic office duties including photocopying, typing meeting minutes, etc.
  •          Must have a driver’s license and own transportation.
  •          Able to work at least 4 hours, but no more than 12 hours per week for part time, and no more than 35 hours per week for a full time internship position. *May be asked, but not required to attend events in the evenings.*

Contact Person:        
Alison Miers, VP of Easton & Phillipsburg Initiatives 
Phone: 610-739-1512, Fax: 610-330-9177

Business News in the Lehigh Valley, 2/12/13

Good morning Lehigh Valley, and Happy Fastnacht Day!

In recent business news, Governor Corbett announced his 2013-2014 budget plan last week, the details of which can be found here. The proposed plan includes "removing the oil company franchise cap, decreasing the flat gas tax from 12 cents to 10 cents, revamping the pension system for new government workers and repealing the corporate loans tax."

Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection recently awarded $18 million in grants to 131 municipalities and counties for developing and implementing recycling programs. Through the program, these municipalities are eligible for up to 90 percent funding of approved recycling program costs.

The first ever Lehigh Valley Beer Week kicked off yesterday with a ribbon cutting celebration at Allentown Brew Works. Dozens of regional bars and restaurants will be participating in this celebration of beer, with various events held throughout the week. Check out for the full schedule of activities.

In world news, the Pope announced he would step down from his position at the end of the month, citing his declining strength as the reason for his departure from the position. A papal resignation has not happened for nearly 600 years.

That's all for now, hope everyone has a great 'Fat Tuesday!'

Monday, February 11, 2013

Growing Your Business in 2013 - Sticky Buns Rock

Guest blog post from Carol Ritter of

What a week! I had the opportunity to be a guest host on the new TV show The PEAK airing Sunday’s at 6:30 on WFMZ. The segment was about “Businesses Fitness,” so we were off to find a business who has a “Fit” and Flourishing Business. We went to Peddler's Village to explore the secret to success for Kerry and Roseann, the owners of the Town Crier Bakery. As I walked in the door and smelled the sweet aroma of the bakery, Roseann came running over to me and said, “Welcome to the Town Crier Bakery.” The windows and shelves were filled with beautifully decorated cakes, pastries, cupcake, cookies and more. It was a beautiful sight. 

I sat down to interview Roseann and asked, “What is your secret weapon, what do you do that no one else does, what makes you a fit business?” “We have three secret weapons. First, Kerry has spent his life baking and dreamed for years of owning a bakery, his creations are unique and ever changing.” (CHANGE)  “Second, our customers are so important to us, we want them to feel welcome and we will do our best to custom bake anything they want, whether it’s vegan, gluten free, egg free, or sugar free”. Roseann told me that they have a customer who is allergic to eggs, so Kerry went out and bought duck eggs and made her a cake. (OVER THE TOP OUTRAGEOUS CUSTOMER SERVICE)  “And third, we offer specials all the time, today is free sticky bun Thursday.” (NEW & EXCITING) 

CHANGE, OVER THE TOP OUTRAGEOUS CUSTOMER SERVICE AND NEW & EXCITING  - that’s not only their secret to success; it can be yours too!

After that I was off to their kitchen to make Sticky Buns! I have some experience with those delicious hunks of goo but I decided to let Kerry teach me. We rolled the dough, splashed it with tons of melted butter, sprinkled his secret recipe for cinnamon and began to roll again. I rolled and rolled. Then the tray of nuts and raisins arrived and underneath was a big, fat layer of goo. We then cut them to just the right width and started lining them up for the oven. 

If you are a facebook fan, check out the Town Crier Bakery and you can see the delectable desserts they provide for their customers. Do you want your business to be “fit?”  I mean lots of customers and lots of revenue? If so, follow Kerry and Roseann’s secret to success; change it up, provide outrageous customer service, bring on the new and exciting and don’t forget to go over the top for the customer that has special needs.  Their STICKY BUNS ROCK, especially when they are free. If it’s free it’s for me!

Carol serves as a featured writer for the Home News and the Lehigh Valley Chamber Blog.
Carol is an accomplished professional speaker, coach and educational consultant specializing in innovative leadership, outrageous fundraising, million dollar marketing, and building organizational alliances throughout the country.  Carol’s creative  leadership with bullet proof ideas for recruiting MORE MEMBERS, MORE MONEY AND BETTER LEADERS. 610-442-4545  Like me on  Facebook at Caroltalks and CarolCoaches!  Carol S. Ritter, Immediate Past President, National Speakers Association Philadelphia

Friday, February 8, 2013

TomTom / Adams Outdoor Advertising Create Partnership

TomTom, the world’s leading supplier of navigation, map and traffic services, and Adams Outdoor Advertising announced today that they have entered into a partnership agreement to deliver real-time traffic content to extensive Adams-owned digital sign network in the Lehigh Valley.   Effective immediately, Adams digital displays will be able to provide in addition to other ads “time to destination” information.  The initial advertiser employing the product of this new partnership will be Lehigh Valley Honda, a subsidiary of Lehigh Valley’s prominent Vinart consortium of auto dealerships.

TomTom’s HD Route Times comprises data gleaned from literally millions of live information sources in order to provide the most accurate and current traffic-oriented communications to Lehigh Valley drivers and passengers.  Tony Cioffi, Adams General Manager in Lehigh Valley, said that, “We selected Tom Tom in order to improve traffic information services to our community.”

Dan Adams, TomTom’s Vice President for Enterprise and Government, said that, “Tom Tom is committed to providing dependable traffic information to help drivers reach their destinations faster.  By integrating TomTom with services provided by Adams Outdoor, the new partnership will guarantee that Lehigh Valley drivers will be better informed about their journey.”

Adams is the largest and most progressive out-of-home media provider in the Lehigh Valley area, with 21 digital units already in its network of digital signage.  In 2013, Adams Outdoor anticipates the installation of 6 additional digital displays to this network, one of the most extensive of its kind in the Northeast.

Paul Goodwin, General Manager of Lehigh Valley Honda, saw the benefit and agreed to be the network sponsor on seven digital displays with Adams.  The first creative copy, which will be unveiled on the Adams digital network this week, devotes roughly 30% of the advertising display space for this travel time feed to notify travelers to various designation points throughout the Lehigh Valley market.

Adams Outdoor, in addition to being the largest outdoor advertising provider in the Lehigh Valley metro area, is a major media provider in thirteen other markets in eight states.  In total, Adams operates more than 12,000 displays units.

TomTom real-time traffic navigation solutions provide precise locations and delay times of traffic congestion, so that alternate routes can be provided to drivers, as well as a means for drivers to determine the quickest route to their destination.


Emmaus Main Street Partners - February Connections Article

This article originally appeared in February's issue of Connections, The Chamber's monthly publication.

Written by: Richard Zayaitz, ADP Insurance
Emmaus Main Street Partners Program President
866-501-0474 •

We ushered in the new year spending time with family and friends and now we are gearing up for our 2013 membership campaign. The partnership with the GLVCC presents us with a unique opportunity this year for all of our members. They can explore the many aspects The Chamber has to offer for the small- to medium-sized businesses located in the Emmaus area.  Look for an Emmaus Main Street Partner board member who will be visiting your business in the near future.

The winter’s farmers market is in full swing, promoting fresh, organic produce grown in the Lehigh Valley and sold by Lehigh Valley farmers.  They are open every other Sunday for your enjoyment.

We are celebrating several February holidays in Emmaus this month.  As most people know Groundhog Day is followed up by Fastnacht Day on February 12, a German tradition, where families removed lard and other fats from their homes before the start of Lent, and utilize those fats to make fastnachts.  Enjoy Valentine’s Day in Emmaus by visiting and enjoying the small town atmosphere, our restaurants and our cozy shops to round off the month of February.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

This Weekend on The Peak TV - Sunday, 2/10/13

The Peak TV is the region's newest show dedicated to helping you become your best self! Weekly episodes air Sunday nights at 6:30 p.m. on WFMZ and delve into topics such as medical news, healthy recipes, ways to stay fit, financial wellness, giving back through volunteering, and more!

Watch the previous episodes reel here, and make sure to tune into WFMZ this Sunday, February 10 at 6:30 p.m. for-

·      The constant battle with weight loss is a problem for many people.  After a lifetime of struggling to gain control of her weight, meet a woman who decided to make a change with the help of St. Luke’s award winning Bariatric Center.    

·      Pilates is a physical fitness system developed to help build flexibility, strength and a strong core.  Meet Pilates expert Stacey Redfield, of Physical Methods Studio, and learn how this form of exercise has changed the lives of two people affected with scoliosis. 

·      Discover how The Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce Foundation was established and why it continues to drive money into towns and business districts, strengthening the Valley’s “Main Streets” and communities along the way.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Growing Your Business in 2013 - It Takes Two Baby!

Growing your Business in 2013 - It Takes Two Baby. By Carol Ritter of

The glass on my phone cracked this week, and a good friend suggested I go to a kiosk in the mall that fixes broken phones. I needed help right away. I drove to the mall and discovered the kiosk is located right outside of a wireless company. I wondered, “How that is working, the competition is right outside their door?” As I was waiting for my phone, I asked, “How does this big company feel about you being right outside?” He happily replied, “They refer folks to me for repairs and I refer folks to them for cases.” So, you can partner with your competition. That’s not only forward thinking, it’s just plain progressive.

Partners make the world go ‘round’. Do you want your business to be forward thinking and progressive? Or are you okay with same old, same old, same old? I liken it to being on a Merry Go Round. You go round and round and nothing changes, you might get a little dizzy but your horse continues to pass the same old scenery. But if you are lucky you can insist on sitting on a horse that goes up and down and you might at least see things from a different perspective. 

It Takes Two....
Can two restaurants partner - maybe a progressive dinner
Can two hair salons partner - hair done here, nails done there
Can three printers partner - pick a charity and partner for a community event
Can two florists partner - Invent an occasion-a Big Game Discounts
Can three speakers partner - sure can, host an event together

Keep people interested in you, your product or service by partnering. Partnering is not a competitive thing, it’s a collaborative thing. The difference is that with a collaborative effort, everyone wins. 

All it takes is an idea, an idea that reinvents something and gives your customers something to “WOW” about. Use exciting words to promote your “WOW.” Sometimes it takes two baby, to WOW your customers, try it sometime!

Even if you're on the right track, you‘ll get run over if you just sit there.

Carol serves as a featured writer for the Home News and the Lehigh Valley Chamber Blog.
Carol is an accomplished professional speaker, coach and educational consultant specializing in innovative leadership, outrageous fundraising, million dollar marketing, and building organizational alliances throughout the country.  Carol’s creative  leadership with bullet proof ideas for recruiting MORE MEMBERS, MORE MONEY AND BETTER LEADERS. 610-442-4545  Like me on  Facebook at Caroltalks and CarolCoaches!  Carol S. Ritter, Immediate Past President, National Speakers Association Philadelphia