Plant City’s Karen Gillman and Tampa’s Intelligent Office® Both Nominated for Small Business Leadership Awards for the Second Consecutive Year
Gillman works for the Intelligent Office® franchise in Tampa, and both she and the company received nominations for the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce annual awards again this year. She attributes this year's honor to new services and charitable activities she and Intelligent Office® supported over the last 12 months.
In addition, the family business she helps manage, Intelligent Office®, located at 3111 Dr. W. Martin Luther King Blvd. Suite 100, in Tampa, was also nominated for the Greater Tampa Chamber’s “Small Business of the Year Award” for the second consecutive year as well. In 2009, Intelligent Office® was named a semi-finalist for this award.
“Once again, we are overwhelmed and so grateful for the outpouring of support we’ve received regarding these nominations,” said Gillman, whose primary responsibility at Intelligent Office® focuses on sales and client services.
“We’ve grown as a company in the last year. We have a very strong team, and our services are extremely relevant in today’s market. I think we are making a big impact with the business community,” she said.
Corporate Evolution and Personal Leadership Development: The past 12 months
Gillman believes several key initiatives implemented by Intelligent Office® in the past 12 months contribute to the overall strength of the franchise operation she leads.
“We have dedicated ourselves to building connections, and in the process we’ve become a hub for networking and educational opportunities for small businesses in this community,” Gillman said.
Here are a few examples of new initiatives that have become cornerstone activities, making Intelligent Office® an invaluable resource to countless business owners, including the 260 clients the company serves on a daily basis with a small but efficient team of seven.
BNI Profit Pros Chapter Leadership
When Gillman joined the BNI Profit Pros chapter two years ago, she could barely deliver a 30-second summary about her company’s services without freezing up. However, in the process of interacting with the chapter and training the 50-plus members on how to refer business to her company, she has grown in her confidence and public speaking abilities. She quickly progressed to a leadership role in the chapter, and now serves as the 2009/2010 chapter president.
“Profit Pros has changed me forever,” Gillman said, “and the connectivity we share through this formal networking program has been very powerful for our company and for me, personally.”
Expanding on the concept of formal networking, Gillman and her friend and colleague, Lisa Ford of Invent Your Image, founded another networking organization specifically designed for woman to network while giving back to the community. Hosted at Intelligent Office® on a monthly basis, Charity Chics introduces female business owners each other to generate business referrals. It also showcases Gillman’s company and presents another opportunity for her to overview her services to a targeted audience.
“Charity Chics gives Karen another outlet to exercise her gift of bringing people together in ways that are not only helpful, but profitable and charitable all at once,” said co-founder Ford. “And I cannot think of a better place to host this meeting than in the comfortable and professional offices at Intelligent Office.”
HARC Ambassador & Board Member
For the past several years, Gillman has volunteered her time as an ambassador for HARC – Hillsborough Achievement and Resource Centers – and supports their fall fashion show and other fund-raising efforts. Based on her contributions of time, talent and resources, HARC has named Gillman to its board of directors, effective in May, 2010.
According to HARC CEO, Richard Lilliston, “Bringing Karen Gillman onto our board brings sunshine, business acumen and powerful networking talents to our organization. She has been a long-time advocate for HARC, and her enthusiasm for helping disabled adults is contagious. I know for a fact that she has won many people over to our cause by simply sharing her own experiences with them,” Lilliston said.
Intelligent Office Seminar Series
Over the past 12 months, Intelligent Office® began coordinating educational seminars for its clients and members of Gillman’s professional network. Seminars have included “how to” topics like these:
- Search Engine Optimization
- Business Survival Tips in Today’s Economy
- Public Relations Tips & Tactics
- Government Bidding Tips and Procedures
- Effective Sales Strategies
Business consultant Gary Teaney, owner of Transformational Consulting for Business, advises Gillman and Intelligent Office® on a variety of matters and is an integral part of the planning and development of these seminars.
“The training Karen is bringing to her clientele is pure added-value above and beyond the exceptional, comprehensive services her team is already delivering,” Teaney said. “Seminar evaluations are providing great feedback, and a clear indication that people want more of this type of service.”
Tampa Bay Small Business Jumpstart
Designed to award a budding entrepreneur with a “jumpstart” on a new company launch, the Tampa Bay Small Business Jumpstart program is the perfect example of Gillman’s ability to bring people together for good causes. Working with a team that involves several clients and members of her BNI Profit Pros chapter, Intelligent Office® was one of eight contributors to a pro bono package of business start-up services totaling over $25,000 in 2009.
Fellow Tampa Jumpstart contributor Julie Heidelberg, owner of Heidelberg PR, member of Charity Chics and BNI Profit Pros, and an Intelligent Office® client, said, “I don’t know that I’ve ever met a woman as giving, professional and sincere as Karen Gillman, and she is consistent regardless of her setting and environment.”
“No one makes bridge-building and collaboration a priority the way Karen does – and she does it with natural grace and ease,” said Heidelberg.
For more information on Intelligent Office, visit www.intelligentoffice.com or call the Tampa office at 813-350-7800.
About Intelligent Office
Intelligent Office® is the national leader in virtual office solutions, shared serviced office space, and receptionist services. Intelligent Office® offers professional, temporary and virtual office space with all the amenities of a real office, and memberships include address services, remote receptionists, phone numbers, ala cart business services and nation-wide meeting spaces. All services are customizable to fit varied business needs, offering a smart, affordable and easy way to work from home, another office, or on the road. As part of the national franchise, the Tampa location currently serves over 260 business professionals.