Competitive Edge Series

Here is a listing of some of our more recent Competive Edge events.

Half-Time 2018 – What’s Your Sales Score?

Tue., Jun. 5, 2018

11:45am - 1:30pm

Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce


Are you breaking records – or is your lack of results sounding like a broken record?

Are you using the same old plays in marketing to a world with new (and ever changing) rules?

Perhaps, it’s time for an in-house review and a 3rd qtr. reboot –

  • A new perspective about your marketing plan
  • Seeing your business from your customer’s point of view?

This highly interactive and engaging presentation will give you the tools – and "ah-ha" moments to help create a new game plan and end 2018 with a winning season.

Attendees will learn:

  • Why is your “Why?” important – but does your prospect really care?
  • That reversing the traditional sales funnel will determine your best “Who.”
  • To create five – 12 customer touch points (“Where and When”) to maximize your message

Featured Speakers

Sheila Neisler, Owner, Catalyst – A Marketing Company

For more than 15 years, Sheila has been helping small and middle market organizations achieve double digit results by creating and executing a 360° Marketing Plan. Her philosophy: “it’s not about spending more money; it’s about spending it more effectively.”

Catalyst is an evolution of "preaching what Sheila practiced." With an AA degree from USF and a BS in Finance from FSU, she took her experience as a corporate financial analyst into the entrepreneurial world, starting a corporate gift basket company in Charleston, SC. She was later recruited by a number of national trade associations to lead marketing presentations. As she expanded to North Carolina, clients and business leaders encouraged her to jump into marketing full time, valuing “her brains more than her baskets."

Sheila recently relocated to Tampa Bay and serves clients in the service, manufacturing and not-for-profit sectors. Her work process melds bottom-line banking experience with a top-line sales and marketing passion to drive results.

Creating brand recognition and value

Tue., May 1, 2018

11:45am - 1:30pm

Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce

Attendees will:

  • Understand how to grow a small business without compromising quality
  • Identify ways to enter new markets and partnerships and considerations when developing the right partnerships
  • Hear how Norman Love has created brand awareness to drive business
  • Understand how to manage innovation and product development as well as bring new products to market

Featured Speaker

Norman Love: Entrepreneur, Philanthropist, Chocolatier

Since founding Norman Love Confections, Norman has received tremendous national and international recognition. One of the top European daily newspapers, as well as National Geographic magazine, have ranked Norman Love Confections among the top 10 chocolate shops in the world and Dessert Professional Magazine has honored Norman Love as a the first inductee into the Chocolatier Hall of Fame. Norman and his chocolates have been featured by USA Today, The Today Show, Robb Report, InStyle, Martha Stewart Living, Forbes and O, The Oprah Magazine.

He owns and operates four chocolate salons in Southwest Florida as well as Artisan Gelato by Norman Love. Love has also grown a vibrant e-commerce business, and signature chocolates and specialty products are shipped to chocolate lovers around the country. Norman Love and his wife Mary started their company in Fort Myers 15 years ago, an inspiring story of creating a business from scratch, and growing it into a globally recognized brand.

Moving People, Profits and Productivity in the Right Direction

Tue., Apr. 17, 2018

11:45am - 1:30pm

Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce

A picture-perfect culture doesn’t just happen. It’s more than setting the right objectives, stocking the breakroom with great snacks (and copious amounts of coffee), or plastering the office with inspirational quotes. It takes planning, preparation and consistent execution.  And understanding how important culture is to the success of your company is the first step.  As the leader, you breathe life into the culture daily through your words, actions, policies and unwritten norms. If your company culture is going downhill, CPR won’t help if leadership doesn’t buy in to the role culture plays in success. A productive culture is built through dedication and effort, and while perks are nice, they are only a part of the bigger plan.  A productive, profitable, people-oriented culture produces collaboration and employees give their best effort for an organization they are proud to be a part of.

Attendees will learn:

  • The leader’s role
  • The employee’s role
  • 4 ways to build an engaging culture

Featured Speaker

Tonya DeVane, Omnia Client Advisor

Tonya DeVane joined The Omnia Group as a Client Advisor in September 2008. In her current capacity, Ms. DeVane helps professionals select top talent, manage more effectively and build high-performance teams using behavioral assessment tools/concepts. Tonya has provided guidance to hundreds of businesses in a wide range of industries, including insurance, financial services, automotive, staffing and healthcare.

Before joining Omnia, Tonya worked for many years in retail management. She has trained and developed sales staff, conducted onsite workshops as well as led numerous webinars. She has over 15 years’ experience identifying customer needs and implementing innovative solutions. She has a degree in Human Service Counseling and is certified in Human Resource Management.

What It Takes To Be An Award-Winning Company

Wed., Mar. 21, 2018

11:45am - 1:30pm

Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce

Join the Chamber for our monthly Competitive Edge Series featuring a panel discussion with executives from the Chamber’s 2017 Small Business of the Year award-winning companies. They will highlight what makes their company successful and share their personal thoughts on the following:

  • Management philosophy
  • Major risks of starting your own business
  • Key business values
  • Challenges and adversities
  • How they recruit staff
  • Other tips and recommendations for success

Featured Panel

  • Moderator – 2017 SBOY Chair Brian Adcock, Adcock Financial Group
  • Startup Winner – Paul Huszar, P.E., President and CEO, VetCor LLC
  • 5 – 20 Employees Winner – Caroline Sikorske, Managing Partner, Sessums Black Caballero Ficarrotta, PA
  • 21 – 50 Employees Winner – Stephenie Davis, Director Sales & Marketing, Davis Industrial
  • 51 – 250 Employees Winner – Earl Rahn, President, NewSouth Window Solutions

Negotiation Skills Mastery: How to Create Value on Every Deal You Close

Wed., Feb. 14, 2018

11:45am - 1:30pm

Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce

We negotiate when we have something to offer or we want something under different terms than the other party. Today, the need for effective negotiation skills is greater than it has ever been, primarily due to technology and the Internet. Today’s prospects, customers, and business partners are more educated and prepared, have access to information right away, and have more alternatives available. In response to this new reality, negotiators must be equally informed and prepared, respect the other party’s interests, and be ready to provide "win-win" solutions to remain competitive.

Attendees will learn how to:

  • Practice methods to uncover and appeal to the different interests that are brought to the negotiation table
  • Generate all-win outcomes through planning, preparation, and effective bargaining
  • Increase listening to uncover and clarify the needs and interests of others
  • Establish appropriate targets before bargaining

Featured Speaker

Rick Gallegos, CEO, Dale Carnegie Tampa Bay

Rick Gallegos, CEO of Dale Carnegie Tampa Bay is a veteran business coach who is passionate about helping people, businesses and organizations thrive. His clients are experienced CEOs and budding leaders who consider Rick a total business resource—someone who is admired and valued for asking the right questions, leading and dissecting conversations, and pinpointing issues that beg for change and development.

His credibility stems not only from having counseled so many different kinds of businesses, but also from his own track record as a successful leader. As owner of Tampa Bay’s Dale Carnegie franchise for the past two decades, Rick knows how challenging it can be to stay relevant, encourage high performance, and build positive relationships in a rapidly changing business climate.

His ability to hurdle those challenges has consistently placed his Tampa Bay franchise among the top performing Dale Carnegie offices worldwide. He is best known among his Dale Carnegie colleagues for authoring two of the company’s most successful courses, both of which are taught around the globe today.