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Southern Market

Your Window Into the World of Retail Shopping Bliss

An iconic retail destination since 1996 for shopping aficionados from East Tennessee and far beyond, Southern Market has become the favorite shopping venue for two generations of shoppers who appreciate their totally unique boutique style retail venue that is so difficult to duplicate in today’s “big box” style retail environment. What is even more unique about Southern Market is how two women entrepreneurs, a mother and daughter team, not only created this extraordinary business success, but also how they created a retail platform for other aspiring entrepreneurs who wish to follow their business dreams as well.

In this issue of Everything Knoxville, we are pleased to share with our readers our recent interview with Southern Market owner, Susan Worthington.

EK: Tell our readers how Southern Market first began.

Susan: More than two decades ago my mother, Frances Sexton, and I envisioned the concept of an interiors marketplace by combining more than 40 boutiques under a single roof. Southern Market was designed to provide a truly unique shopping experience inspired by the vision of intimate boutiques lining the streets of a charming village. During our travels of more than 20,000 miles throughout the Southeast, we discovered an attractive array of small business merchants and were inspired to open a boutique in Knoxville. Throughout the years, local merchants have replaced regional merchants, creating a decidedly “shop local” feel to our marketplace.

EK: Describe the types of merchandise our readers will discover at Southern Market.

Susan: Southern Market offers an interiors marketplace of more than 40 boutiques, including a gallery of 50 local Etsy artists. We have evolved into a must-visit destination for discerning shoppers seeking an ever-changing and eclectic selection of stylish decorative accessories, distinctive gifts, home décor, boutique fashions, and original art. Whether you are seeking the expert advice of one of our talented in-store interior decorators or are confident in your own artistic abilities, you will discover an abundance of inspirational decorating ideas that make shopping an enjoyable and invigorating breeze at Southern Market.

With that first step through our front entrance, you will be transformed by soft scents and alluring sights. Your pulse quickens as you try to take it all in – there is so much to see! To touch! To experience! Creative energies start flowing – inspired by innovative uses of color, texture and pattern, the sheen of soft metals, the glow of beautiful lamps, inviting artwork, and gift possibilities. Whether you’re searching for a gift of more charm than cost or something quite extravagant for the home, it’s fun to browse! Variety abounds!

EK: In addition to its charming Southern atmosphere, Southern Market really is a one-stop shopping destination.

Susan: Each inviting boutique is conceived and designed by our very creative merchants who offer a medley of decorative furniture, discerning accessories, hand-crafted art, garden décor, boutique fashions and jewelry, or stylish gift items. Additionally, each shop is a showcase of intriguing interior design featuring the most charming and current design trends. This delightful mixture of merchants makes Southern Market truly a one-stop shopping destination for all your decorative gift needs – including free gift wrapping.

My mom and I wanted to provide a shopping experience like no other, and in each of our 20 plus years in business, we have developed and provided exciting and creative retail experiences for our savvy customers. Our focus is on creating a truly warm, friendly ambiance where it’s decidedly fun to shop. Southern Market is at its core a place to uplift the soul and regenerate the mind… a place that stimulates the senses and invigorates one’s inner creative being. Offering so much more than merely stuff, we are confident that you will leave Southern Market fully inspired.

EK: It would appear that Southern Market represents a great opportunity for new entrepreneurs hoping to launch a business of their own.

Susan: Absolutely. Traditional start-up businesses face numerous and often costly barriers to enter into the retail market, especially those seeking a brick and mortar presence. However, at the Southern Market, the high overhead costs attributed to operating a business are shared among our merchants, thereby lowering their costs of doing business. Our sales staff handles all daily processing of sales and marketing, so there are no work requirements. Our merchants are free to concentrate on new products, merchandising, spend more time with family and friends, or to pursue hobbies such as travel or professional careers.

Having a physical presence often provides our retailers a competitive advantage when acquiring product lines versus online only stores. Our merchants can explore and test their product lines, business models, and target markets while gauging consumer response and adapting to insights and trends. Friendly competition and mentoring internally among our merchants and staff help build stronger and more successful retailers. We offer a variety of affordable space options, from a single shelf to an entire shop, to fit the needs of each entrepreneur looking to succeed in today’s competitive retail environment. Our focus is to help incubate merchants into viable, small businesses. Some of our merchants have even launched stand alone brick and mortar stores of their own. At Southern Market, you are in business for yourself but not by yourself.

EK: It would also appear that Southern Market offers more established entrepreneurs with an existing brick and mortar location a tremendous opportunity to explore new growth opportunities.

Susan: Absolutely. Existing brick and mortar retail stores desiring a centralized, upscale Knoxville location in which to expand their businesses find Southern Market an attractive alternative to launching a new and separate retail store. It allows existing businesses the opportunity to expand but at just a fraction of the cost.

EK: How would you summarize the Southern Market experience?

Susan: We encourage our new merchants to try to imagine all of the possibilities that exist for their existing or start-up businesses: Growth, exposure, physical location, expansion, branding, mentoring, new product lines… whatever your vision is. The Southern Market represents the perfect venue for upscale, small business, local shops. Merchants can enjoy the luxury of having their own shop or second location without the daily hassles of managing their own stores. We are also exploring a variety of new ideas to further expand our merchants’ sales opportunities in the future as we enter our third decade of supporting our area’s small local business community.

One other important feature that Southern Market offers both shoppers and merchants alike is the synergy that is created by combining more than 40 unique shopping venues in a single location. Through creative, collaborative, retail merchandising, Southern Market has been Knoxville’s premier design marketplace since 1996. To discover what all the excitement is about, contact us at 865-588-2260 and come grow with us.

EK: Please highlight some of the retail vendors our readers will find at Southern Market.

Susan: The store provides an ever-changing variety of stylish home décor, gifts, fashion, and art from more than 40 local merchants and 50 Etsy artists, including:

Home décor:
» Victoria’s – If you want it, you can find it here
» Southern Accents TN – A sign for everything you want to say
» My Little Room – Uniqueness is her middle name
» Sweetwater Flower Shop – An abundance of elegant florals
» Blue Heron Studio – Farmhouse interiors and architectural accents

Stylish gifts:
» Schoolhouse Alley – Classic children’s gifts
» Manchester Estate – Men’s personal care gifts
» Jordan’s Gems – A hat for all reasons and seasons
» Embellish Gifts – Seasonal and local gifts

Boutique fashion:
» Euphoria Boutique – Boho chic fashions
» Schriver’s Boutique – Trendy bohemian apparel
» 3130 Boutique – Clothing for women and children
» Melanie B Stylist – Glitter and glam for the holidays

Hand-crafted art:
» Sarah B Weber Art – Farmhouse animals & more
» Originals by Viola – Extraordinary broken glass collages
» Boxwood Brake – Artisan inspired wares

EK: Will Southern Market be hosting any special events this holiday season?

Susan: Kicking off the season this November 1st through 4th is one of our biggest events, Southern Market’s annual Holiday Open House. You are encouraged to take advantage of the Thanksgiving weekend discounts offered during Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and the Cyber Monday/social media specials. Also, early in December will be the District in Bearden Holiday Open House and the Southern Market’s Ladies’ Night Out each Thursday in December until 8 pm. Take advantage of additional holiday shopping hours on Sundays in November and December from 1 to 5 pm. Thinking further ahead, Spring Fling, a festive outdoor market, will be the big kick-off for events in 2019 with various smaller events offered monthly, and our popular Tailgate Party in August, where our merchants sell from displays within the tailgates of their vehicles, celebrating the beginning of the Big Orange season.

EK: How can our readers learn more about Southern Market?

Susan: Get social with the Southern Market on social media. Follow us on Facebook and @southernmarketshops on Instagram. We post daily and often with new product announcements, restock alerts, new merchant spotlights, new employee announcements, upcoming event information, class offerings, staff highlights, shop local promotions and discounts, and the customers’ favorites: Product giveaways! We offer drawings for gift certificates and well-stocked gift baskets. We encourage readers to like, comment, and share to enter our football game day drawings. You will also find us on Pinterest with a board for each merchant – a fantastic way to window shop through the gallery of merchant shops. The Southern Market is also on Twitter, Yelp, and YouTube. You can join our email list at www.southernmarketshops.com to be certain you stay informed.

EK: In closing, is there anything else you would like to add?

Susan: Yes! The treasure chest! For those of you who love to shop with us, we are now offering a new Magnolia Elite Rewards Club Program. Get a magnolia stamp for every $10 spent (before tax) with the merchants located within Southern Market. Collect 10 stamps and then get a choice of a FREE GIFT from the designated treasure chest. The best thing about the free gifts is that they are giftable! If you need a last-minute gift or one more gift to make your gifting complete, the treasure(s) you choose can meet those needs or, even better, an earned gift for yourself. You deserve to be rewarded for shopping LOCAL! To go along with the program is the new VIP Magnolia Elite Rewards Club, a Facebook group. Join for giveaways, discounts, and surprises exclusively for VIP members.

The Southern Market has enthusiastically supported trade professionals in Knoxville for 22 years. We offer a trade discount to interior designers, interior decorators, home stagers, architects, home developers, hospitality professionals, and others purchasing for resale with a valid sales tax ID. A copy of your current sales tax ID and a business card are required to be on file. Some restrictions apply. For more information, inquire at the front desk of the store. Sign up today if you haven’t already!

Not only do we support the local merchants, but we also support our local community and charitable organizations. We offer a discount in the Knox County School Coupon book. We wear purple and display purple in the store to show our “Paint the Town Purple” and “Purple Out Day” support in Alzheimer’s research. We are currently supporting the “All In Against Alzheimer’s” fundraiser by selling orange and white shakers. The proceeds will go to benefit the Pat Summitt Clinic at UTMC. Our Mother’s Day gift basket promotion with memorial/honor donations supports Thompson Cancer Survival Center. We raise money for childhood cancer research with Alex’s Lemonade Stand each July with our back-to-school promotion. During the last 22 years, we have participated in and supported many local organizations, including Knoxville Junior League, Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville Symphony League, Parade of Homes, Dogwood Arts Festival, Kidney Foundation, Children’s Hospital, Florence Crittenden Agency, Joy of Music School, and Knoxville Executive Women, just to name a few.

Finally, all of us at Southern Market would like to thank you for voting Southern Market as Knoxville’s Best Gift Shop in the Knoxville News-Sentinel! We are more than delighted to offer a unique shopping experience for Knoxville and to support local small business merchants and Etsy artists.

Southern Market
5400 Homberg Drive
Knoxville, TN 37919
865.588.0274
www.southernmarketshops.com
Facebook: The Southern Market
Instagram: @southernmarketshops
Pinterest: The Southern Market

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Introducing Knox Cabinet Co.

Discover Your Home’s Showcase Kitchen

Most homeowners would agree that their home’s kitchen is the most important room in their home. Our kitchen is the center of our family’s day-to-day living. Our day begins in our kitchen with our first cup of coffee and continues on throughout the day as we cook, dine, and socialize in the kitchen with family and friends.

The kitchen is where we bond, and as Americans, the trend is for families to become even more kitchen-centric in the future as kitchens grow in size with the addition of gourmet appliances, expanded seating areas, flat screen TVs, and even fireplaces. Whether you’re designing a kitchen for your new dream home or redesigning a new kitchen for an existing home, success in creating your home’s showcase kitchen starts with a well-thought out and implemented design.

In this issue of Everything Knoxville, we are excited to introduce you to Knox Cabinet Co. co-owner, Megan Thomas. Megan and her fellow co-owners, Brian Davis and her brother, Lane Thomas, share decades of combined entrepreneurial experience, including residential development and construction, residential remodeling, property management, commercial redevelopment, and kitchen and bath cabinetry design and sales. If you are truly searching for the highest quality kitchen and bathroom cabinetry at near wholesale pricing and a turn-key experience, we think you will enjoy this month’s interview with Megan.

EK: What first inspired you to open Knox Cabinet Co.?

Megan: Launching Knox Cabinet Co. seemed liked a natural extension of our combined experiences and talents. Brian and I have been buying and remodeling existing homes for resale for many years. During this process, we learned the importance of creating dynamic kitchens and baths in the homes we sold. They became the centerpiece of each successful sale. Although we had a wonderful relationship with our cabinet vendor, we began to search for a new cabinet line that offered more options yet was still affordable. After discovering an exciting new cabinet manufacturer, we completed our new showroom on Hardin Valley Road. We like to refer to our new showroom as a Discovery Center, where you can discover all of the possibilities that exist for creating showcase quality kitchens and baths in your homes.

Another thing we think you will enjoy about doing business with Knox Cabinet Co. is the “family feel.” That’s because you will find both Brian’s mom and my mom, in addition to my not-so-little brother, Lane, at our showroom happy to assist you. A former Bearden High School baseball standout, Lane now plays with the St. Louis Cardinals organization. But I have drafted him during the off-season to put his real estate and teamwork expertise to work at Knox Cabinet Co.

EK: Both you and Brian have decades of combined residential development, construction, remodeling, and property management experience. How has this helped you at Knox Cabinet Co.?

Megan: Because we were the customers for so many years, we gained an appreciation for what homeowners shopping for kitchen and bath cabinetry wanted from their cabinet supplier. Our goal is to make your experience of shopping for quality and affordable cabinetry as easy and as seamless as possible, creating for our customers the showcase quality look they are searching for while remaining within their budget.

EK: Tell our readers about the many features and benefits of Knox Cabinet Co.’s kitchen and bath cabinetry.

Megan: All of our cabinets are built from solid wood construction without the particle board and MDF so often found today even in some brand name cabinets, and all drawers are dovetailed. Just a few of the available options include pull-out trash receptacles, microwave cabinets, spice rack pull-outs, and file drawers for starters. But I’m confident that your favorite option will be the multiple stain and paint options and door styles available for you to select from. These are truly high-end cabinets at a very affordable price.

EK: It would appear that many of the standard features of your cabinets are optional with other cabinet manufactures.

Megan: At our price point, you would be correct. Homeowners will find that other comparably priced cabinets do not include the soft-close doors and soft-close dovetailed drawers that we offer as standard features. They will also find that they have far fewer options to select from. All of these added features can transform an ordinary kitchen and bath into an extraordinary kitchen and bath.

EK: Many homeowners will be surprised by both the quality of your cabinets and their competitive pricing. How is that possible?

Megan: Our highest priority from the beginning was to offer a top quality, affordable solid wood cabinet that offered the options that we knew our customers would want in order to create that quality, custom kitchen and bath look. We then developed a proprietary business model with low overhead, custom design capabilities, and intelligent logistics in order to offer this unique value to all our customers.

EK: Share with our readers your turn-key approach, including sales, design, and preferred vendor installation.

Megan: I believe this is truly another area that distinguishes Knox Cabinet Co. from its competitors. We already understood the retail cabinetry marketplace from the perspective of the customer. We simply set out to redesign the experience to make it easier and more enjoyable for our customers to achieve their dream of creating the look that they envisioned. Next we designed a showroom featuring multiple designer created vignettes to help inspire you to discover that showcase quality kitchen and bathroom that are waiting to be discovered in your home. With the assistance of one of our designers, we will guide you through every step of the design process, answer all of your questions, offer recommendations, and even offer CAD drawings using our 2020 design software, which can display your proposed layout design on our 65” flat screen monitor in our dedicated conference room. We have even compiled a preferred vendor list of state certified contractors for your convenience who can assist you in installation of your home’s new cabinets.

As I mentioned before, our goal has been to make things as easy and seamless as possible for our customers. We are in the showroom Monday through Saturday and can help with really anything the customer needs – whether it’s providing an opinion on selections, laying out the customer’s kitchen on 2020 design software, or aligning them with our preferred installers.

EK: Do you also offer a preferred vendor for cabinet countertops?  

Megan: Because new cabinets typically require new countertops, each of our vignettes feature a variety of solid surface countertops on all our cabinets designed to inspire you. We also have samples displayed throughout our design showroom for your convenience. Should you discover a surface that you love, we can provide pricing and arrange to have our preferred fabricator/installer come to your home to measure, fabricate, and install your countertops once your new cabinets are installed.

EK: You offer showroom design services. Do you offer in-home design services as well?

Megan: In the home construction and remodeling marketplace, I learned that it is often difficult to accurately describe the kitchen or bath design that the homeowner is attempting to achieve. In those instances, we offer an in-home design service to enable our experienced design staff member to see your project firsthand. Sometimes it’s not just about the measurements of the kitchen, but it’s the layout of the rooms adjoining the kitchen, doorways leading to the kitchen, and the style of the house that gives our staff a better perspective when recommending a particular layout, as well as cabinetry options.

EK: What is your typical turnaround time for cabinet installation?

Megan: While we are primarily focused on quality and service, we understand that time can be of the essence, particularly when your home is under construction. In these instances, we have developed a system that, with the help of our preferred contractors, allows us to have cabinets installed in our customer’s home within two to three weeks from the time of purchase.

EK: How can our readers learn more about Knox Cabinet Co.?

Megan: We’d love for readers to visit our showroom, located at 10238 Hardin Valley Road in Knoxville. Our hours are Monday through Friday from 9 am to 5 pm and Saturday from 10 am to 2 pm. Appointments are encouraged and can be made by calling 865-674-5669. Readers can also visit our website at www.knoxcabinetcompany.com or check us out on Facebook at Knoxville Cabinet Co. or Instagram at @knoxcabinetcompany.

EK: In closing, is there anything else you would like to add?

Megan: We understand that you have many cabinet options to select from, but I would like to encourage your readers to visit our new showroom to discover for themselves not only the quality of our cabinetry, but the selection and competitive pricing as well. Even if you are close to making a final decision, I challenge you to compare our quality and price. Why not let our family help your family to create that showcase kitchen and bathroom that is waiting to be discovered in your home?

Knox Cabinet Co.
10238 Hardin Valley Road
Knoxville, TN 37932
865.674.5669
www.knoxcabinetcompany.com

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Window Works

Family Owned – Made in America – Founded in Knoxville, Tennessee

Sister and brother, Wendy and Chris, share many great memories of their childhood, but one in particular stands out.  These two siblings had the rare opportunity to observe their parents, Tom and Kay Moon, launch and operate several small home improvement companies throughout more than three decades.  Because Tom and Kay focused on providing a customer service level that exceeded the expectations of their clients, Wendy and Chris learned that success was the natural result of treating homeowners as they would like to be treated.  By placing the needs of their customers first, they learned that genuine success would follow.

Today Wendy and Chris have assumed the entrepreneurial reins of operating Knoxville-based Window Works here in East Tennessee from Tom and Kay.  Much has changed in the window replacement marketplace as new technologies continue to offer area homeowners exciting new options and features when replacing your home’s windows.  But one thing that has not changed is the reputation they have earned for integrity and honesty that was the hallmark of success that was instilled in them as children by Tom and Kay.

In this issue of Everything Knoxville, we are pleased to share with you this interview with Wendy and Chris, in addition to some recent family photos of two generations of entrepreneurs along with some third generation hopefuls.

EK: What do you remember most about your early childhood memories of your mom and dad working in your family business together?

Wendy: Honestly, it was how hard they worked.  They were never the type of people to sit back and let something happen.  Growing up I remember my dad talking to us about the importance of setting goals.  But he would take it one step further by helping us break down the steps needed to achieve those goals and developing a plan for success.  Anyone can say they want to do something, but it’s figuring out what it will take to make it happen that’s the true test.  They have never shied away from hard work, and that was passed down to their kids and grandkids.  I believe this work ethic spills over into our business and is reflected in how we operate.  Each job is as important as the next, and each customer’s goal for their project is kept at the forefront of what we are working towards.

EK: As a child, did you ever contemplate self-employment or joining the family business?

Chris: Growing up I watched my dad spend his entire adult life, since returning from Vietnam, in the home improvement industry. First as a contractor, then as a sales rep for one of the leading window and siding manufacturers, next in the wholesale distribution sector, and finally in retail with Window Works.

The thought of working for myself and providing for my family has always been an inspiring notion. I’ve always been drawn to the home improvement industry, because it fascinates me to see how a home can evolve with each personal touch by the homeowner.

I spent more than a decade working for one of the top engineering companies in the United States to only feel I wanted more. When my parents approached me about coming into the business, I didn’t think twice about it. I was so excited to come in and learn as much as I could.

EK: As brother and sister, what has been your experience in working so closely with your sibling?

Wendy:  It’s been an easy transition. We both have our respective area within the business, and at the end of the day, we are first and foremost family.  It’s something our parents stressed as we stepped in and took over: Family first.  I’ll admit there is an added reassurance knowing it’s a family member who is working with you towards the same goal, and it helps that our views on things are so similar.

Truthfully, I have always had a great respect for Chris and have been proud of his accomplishments and how hard he works.  He’s honest, hardworking, intelligent (but don’t tell him that!), and even funny, but above all, he is loyal. It wasn’t a hard decision in deciding to go to work with my brother and one I’ve never regretted.  We were already there for the milestones – good and bad – in each other’s lives. Now we just get to celebrate the achievements with the business, too.

Chris: Well, that depends on what day you ask! Just kidding. It has been a blessing for me. We were fortunate to learn early like most small businesses that we all have our own day-to-day jobs to worry about. Though our tasks may overlap at times, we generally stay busy with our own responsibilities.

I’ve always admired my sister, her work ethic, and drive. It’s been a great fit, because our strategies to hit goals, ambitions with the business, and how to resolve conflict align.

We sat down before we moved forward as business partners to make sure we agreed that family came first above anything. Not just our immediate family, but the families of our team and our clients we serve on a daily basis. Putting that at the forefront of our daily routine, along with all that we have learned from our parents, has been the key to our business and why I think we see so many return and referred clients.

EK: Growing up and watching your parents work together in business, what important characteristics did you observe that you attribute to the success of Window Works today?

Wendy: They always instilled in us to be honest and fair.  Those characteristics set the standard for how they would treat their customers and is part of what I think made them successful.  They offered a great product at a fair price and, just as important, stood behind the work that was done.

It wasn’t and still isn’t uncommon for us to see some of my parent’s past customers while out at a store or eating. They always stop and have a word with them, never reluctant due to a past issue.  They knew that by being honest and treating each customer fairly, they could always be proud of each completed job. My dad especially enjoyed building relationships, educating homeowners, and strived to treat them as he would want to be treated.  It’s why people still call in today asking for him personally.

EK: What role do your parents play at Window Works today?

Chris: Our parents retired in 2015 with a desire to travel. After a little setback with health issues, they are now proceeding as planned to travel to some of the national parks. (I would advise all readers to stay off the road if they see my parents pulling an RV in their direction.)

My parents still come down to the showroom from time to time to catch up with the team and make sure Wendy and I feel supported and are successful. My dad especially loves catching up with old clients, giving our manufacture reps a hard time when they pass through, and even taking a lead or two from time to time.

EK: How has technology transformed your marketplace?

Wendy: Technology has had a great impact on our business.  With its progression things such as advancements on coatings for glass are now at a higher rate, which yield a greater energy savings.  There are also more color options and better spacer systems, all of which benefit our customers in the end.  We spend a great deal of time vetting any manufacturer we offer and comparing their technology and advances with other products that are in the marketplace. One of the exciting things about our newest OKNA line is that it not only outperforms its competitors on energy efficiency, but it also excels in areas such as air infiltration and structural integrity.

Technology has also changed how consumers shop.  People are now more apt to educate themselves on the Internet as to what options and features are available.  They can compare window lines and see where the differences are and decide what is important to them.  With reviews being so easy to access, consumers can also research the company they are hiring.  As a homeowner, I have done it, and we encourage our potential customers to do it – read the reviews and see what our past customers have had to say about us. Once you do, we think you will see why we have such a high rate of customers being referred to us.

EK: Tom shared with us his excitement about a new window that is now available from OKNA.  Share with our readers a little bit about OKNA.

Chris: OKNA has an amazing product line. They specialize in windows and doors earning a reputation for innovation, quality, and performance. They are always working to improve and advance past the status quo. At OKNA, they value the importance of providing customers with one of the most improved energy-efficient windows on the market.

One example of this is: Their window lineup is recognized as ENERGY STAR Most Efficient 2018. Most Efficient is a new distinction that recognizes products that deliver cutting-edge energy efficiency, along with the latest in technological innovation. It is an award that truly represents the best of Energy Star products.

EK: In addition to replacement windows, what other products do you offer homeowners?

Wendy: We also offer siding, patio doors, and gutters.  With different manufacturers, it means homeowners have many choices as far as colors and styles, so there is something for everyone.

We are excited about our newest and exclusive line from OKNA.  Customers have the option of a premium vinyl replacement window but also have an option for a composite window. This new line of windows offers a stainable or paintable finish. Best of all, it comes with a lifetime warranty that surpasses what can be found on the market for a wood window.

EK: How has your insistence on providing a customer service experience that exceeds the expectations of your clients impacted Window Works?

Chris: We always take each job personal no matter how small or big. Our clients give us the opportunity to come into their house to change its current state for the better. We take that seriously by looking at each home we go in as our own.

We establish on the front end the reason for the updates – whether it’s for the maintenance-free advantage, the energy efficiency and savings it can bring, or to update the overall appearance of the house. Those are just a few things we address when we work alongside our clients to find the right products for their project.

If we sell something to our clients that they may not need or even want just because we can “sell it,” that doesn’t help either one of us in the long run. The homeowner will feel a lot less satisfied, but by educating and working with our clients on the front end, we try to eliminate any chance of this happening. At the end of our projects, we hope we’ve exceeded their expectations and gained their trust to recommend us on down the road.     

EK: One thing we found interesting is that the lead installers on each of your installation teams have 20+ years of experience.  Why is this important?

Wendy: For a homeowner, someone removing a window from their home sounds like a daunting process.  As homeowners ourselves, we completely understand how important it is to trust the people that you allow to work on your home, and by having highly skilled and qualified installers with extensive experience, it helps to give homeowners the peace of mind in knowing that if by chance they run into something out of the ordinary, they can rely on their experience to determine the best way to move forward with the install – and even more importantly that it will not compromise their window or their home.

Window Works is also on an approved contractor list through the TVA Escore program.  This is an added benefit for the customer.   It allows for a third party to come in and inspect our work after we are done to make sure it was installed and sealed properly.  It’s a wonderful added value that any of our customers can take advantage of.

EK: Tell our readers about your warranty.

Chris: We have spent a lot of time selecting our products that we offer our customers for a number of reasons. One reason among many is the warranty. A customer that is only planning on staying in their current home a year or two may not be as concerned as someone who is planning on staying 10, 20, or even 30+ years. That’s when a warranty matters. At the end of the day, we are not in the home improvement business; we are in the customer service business. Having a warranty in writing goes a long way for a homeowner’s peace of mind.

EK: On a personal note, what has your parents’ decades of efforts meant to both of you and your families?

Wendy: They are a great role model for our whole family.  Their years of hard work have afforded us this amazing opportunity to continue to grow what they started.  We feel blessed by what they have taught us and what we continue to learn from them.

Chris: It’s a true testament to their legacy. It’s been nothing but amazing for my family and myself to be able to come to work every morning and add to that legacy. I love telling our story to both old clients and new. A story that doesn’t just stop here in Knoxville but also carries on down to Chattanooga to our sister location run by my Uncle Johnny, Aunt Pam, and two cousins, Trey and Tiffany. That’s where I think the decades of effort mean the most. Our parents and extended family have built a solid foundation, which is key for the success of the second generation. Wendy, myself, and our cousins look forward to continuing to contribute to our already strong foundation for the next generations to come.

EK: What is the best way for our readers to learn more about Window Works?

Wendy: There are a couple of ways.  You can call us at 865-560-3044, or if you prefer, you can come by our showroom at 151 Sherway Road, Suite 6.  It’s right behind Harper Audi dealership.

EK: In closing, is there anything you would like to add?

Chris: On behalf of the Window Works family, we just want to thank all of our clients for allowing us to come into their home and show them the Window Works difference. We look forward to helping any future clients who are considering replacing windows, siding, gutters, and patio doors. Given the chance we think you’ll find we take pride in what we do and look forward to working with you.

Window Works
151 Sherway Road, Suite 6
Knoxville, TN 37922
865.560.3044
www.WindowWorksUs.com

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Synergy Spray Foam Insulation

Discover Superior Insulation Performance

For local entrepreneur, Brian Davis, necessity truly has become the mother of invention. When Brian complained to a group of friends about the poor quality car wash he had received from a local vendor, they encouraged him to start his own car wash. That’s just what he did, launching three Synergy Auto Wash locations that have quickly earned a reputation for superior quality.

When Brian, who also owns Synergy Development & Construction, a local custom home builder and remodeler, decided to build a new home for himself, he began giving serious consideration to using spray foam insulation that had been proven to provide far superior insulation performance compared to the conventional insulation products on the market today. His research ultimately led to the launching of Synergy Spray Foam Insulation. In fact, Brian was his own first customer. Specializing in the installation of both open and closed cell insulation, Synergy Spray Foam Insulation is helping area homeowners experience uniform temperature control throughout their homes, as well as significant energy savings.

In this issue of Everything Knoxville, we are pleased to bring you this interview with Synergy Spray Foam Insulation founder and owner, Brian Davis.

EK: Describe the reputation you have developed for launching innovative new businesses.

Brian: Interestingly, the companies we have launched actually target industries that many people might describe as mature. But even a mature market can experience above average growth when improvements are made in the way you deliver your company’s goods, products, or services to your customers.

EK: Give me an example.

Brian: Synergy Auto Wash. Close your eyes and throw a rock and you’ll likely hit a car wash. Most car washes focus on cleaning as many cars as quickly as possible – sort of a one-size-fits-all approach. Unfortunately, most high volume washes underperform customer expectations. Although using state-of-the-art technology, Synergy Auto Wash relies on humans to target areas on your automobile that many other washes miss altogether. We focus on performance that exceeds customers’ expectations without using the type of automated equipment that comes into contact with your car’s surface, which can actually damage your vehicle’s surfaces.

EK: Tell us how Synergy Spray Foam Insulation came about.

Brian: What most of your readers may not know is that I have been a custom home builder and developer for more than a decade. Construction is a fascinating marketplace made even more interesting by the technological advancements taking place on an almost daily basis. Today we can build homes more efficiently that require far less maintenance and that enhance the individual lifestyles of its owners. Open and closed cell foam insulation is one of those technologies whose time has come.

EK: Tell our readers about spray foam insulation.

Brian: Insulation is one of the most critical components in home construction today, and rapidly rising energy costs are making insulation even more important. For decades, homeowners have relied principally on fiberglass batt and blown insulation. Due largely to continually increasing energy prices, this conventional form of insulation has reached its optimum performance levels. Spray foam insulation, on the other hand, is far superior by comparison and outperforms fiberglass insulation hands down.

EK: What should homeowners know about spray foam insulation?

Brian: Think of the exterior surfaces of your home as an envelope. The better insulated the envelope is, the lower your energy bills and the more comfortable your home will be. Spray foam insulation is one of the most efficient insulating materials for residential and commercial applications available today. It has far superior R-values per inch of insulation when compared to fiberglass insulation. But what is even more important is spray foam’s ability to minimize air infiltration, exfiltration, convection, and conduction. Fiberglass insulation performs far less efficiently in these critical areas.

EK: Explain your decision to launch Synergy Spray Foam Insulation.

Brian: As a general contractor and custom home builder and remodeler, I have watched the development of the spray foam insulation marketplace with great interest. I’ve become convinced of its superior performance characteristics. One thing I liked in particular about homes utilizing spray foam insulation is the uniformity in temperature you will experience throughout your home. Homes insulated with fiberglass insulation, on the other hand, typically experience large disparities in temperatures between interior and exterior rooms.

EK: Tell us about Synergy Spray Foam Insulation.

Brian: We decided to utilize our expertise as custom home builders to enhance the installation of our spray foam insulation. Who knows or understands the unique nature of protecting your home’s envelope better than a builder? We made a significant investment in the very best application equipment and technology available today and selected the best open and closed cell insulation materials available from industry leader and wholly U.S. owned Johns Manville Corporation.

EK: What about cost?

Brian: Spray foam insulation is more expensive than conventional fiberglass insulation, but most homeowners will recover this additional investment within three to seven years with the increased energy savings you will experience.

EK: Where can spray foam insulation be applied?

Brian: In new construction, it can be applied to any area where conventional insulation is used. In existing homes, spray foam insulation can be used in the attic or in walls when a major renovation is taking place. One area of new or existing home construction where spray foam insulation performs best is in your home’s attic. Because up to 70% of home energy loss occurs through your ceiling, spray foam insulation can help to provide the energy saving envelope that offers significant energy savings.

EK: How is Synergy Spray Foam Insulation applied in the attics of new or existing homes?

Brian: The spray foam insulation is applied to the bottom of the roof deck of a new or existing home, providing a totally conditioned space. The attic space is now protected from most of the hot or cold air that previously infiltrated into this space. This significantly reduces the energy required to heat and cool your home. This type of insulation is even more critical if your home has an HVAC unit in this same attic area, where your HVAC system is trying to produce 55 degree air to cool your home but where air temperatures surrounding the unit can exceed 120 degrees during the day. Hardly ideal.

EK: How can our readers learn more about Synergy Spray Foam Insulation?

Brian: If you have questions or would like to learn more, please give us a call at 865-777-FOAM.

EK: In closing, is there anything else you would like to add?

Brian: Synergy Spray Foam Insulation is here to stay and is becoming a major component in future new home construction and major home renovations. It will become as commonplace as many of the other technological advances in home construction that we take for granted today.

Synergy Spray Foam Insulation
865.777.FOAM

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ShelfGenie®

Putting Everything Within Your Reach

Whether you have a new home or have been in your existing home for a while, kitchen, bath, and pantry storage is often a source of frustration for homeowners. While your kitchen and bath cabinetry may be custom, the shelving inside our home’s cabinets and pantry is oftentimes generic. The result can be inadequate storage, excess clutter, and a hard to access space that can be a source of frustration for every member of your family.

The solution is simple: ShelfGenie®! Area entrepreneurs and husband and wife team, Dave and Kelli Holliday, offer homeowners the perfect solution to these kitchen, bath, and pantry challenges. ShelfGenie® helps clients transform their lives by designing and implementing custom home solutions that put everything within your reach. In this interview, Dave and Kelli will answer many of those questions most often asked by homeowners hoping to improve their access, storage, and organizational problems.

EK: Tell our readers a little bit about ShelfGenie®.


Dave: ShelfGenie® provides custom pull-out shelving and accessories for your home. Our products and process help improve access to hard-to-reach areas, increase storage, and improve organization.

EK: So ShelfGenie® actually got its start helping homeowners overcome their storage and organizational needs?

Kelli: Like so many useful products, ShelfGenie® started as a simple answer to a basic question, which is “How can I improve the usefulness of my cabinets and pantry?”

EK: Describe several of the solutions you offer homeowners.

Dave: We offer custom pull-out shelves (we call them Glide-Out shelves), as well as accessories such as spice holders, drawer inserts, and products for corner cabinets. Most often we hear from clients who are frustrated by a lack of storage, trying to find and retrieve items from cluttered shelves, or from those who are finding it increasingly difficult to kneel, bend, and twist to access items from lower cabinets.

EK: Each of your solutions is custom designed and manufactured by ShelfGenie®. How do your solutions differ from those generic solutions found in the “big box” stores?

Kelli: We feel we differ in two main ways. The first is that before we even discuss products, we learn about our clients’ needs, in their home, during a free, no-obligation design consultation. This helps to ensure that clients get the best plan for them and only buy what they truly need. The second difference is that our products are completely custom designed, built, and installed for our clients’ existing spaces.

EK: While everyone can benefit from ShelfGenie’s® Glide-Out shelf solutions, they would appear to be very beneficial to those individuals with infirmities or other limitations.

Dave: The advantage of Glide-Out shelves is that they pull out the full depth of the cabinet. This helps clients actually see and reach what they’re looking for without excess bending, twisting, or reaching.

EK: How much additional storage space is achieved using your solutions?

Kelli: Because they pull out, our shelves can be placed closer together vertically. The result is that for a given space, we can increase the storage capacity by 50%.

EK: ShelfGenie® provides homeowners with an experienced in-home personal designer. Describe the entire process.

Dave: Our design professional meets with each client, in their home, for a free design consultation. They learn from the client about their specific needs and priorities, discuss possible solutions, and then create a 3D design plan. We then take detailed measurements of the existing spaces to the millimeter to ensure our products fit perfectly so they look great and maximize the available space. All of our Glide-Outs are hand-crafted in our plant and expertly installed by our own ShelfGenie® trained installer.

EK: Why is the 3D rendering of their custom design plan important?

Kelli: Our goal is 100% client satisfaction, so we want each client to be able to clearly visualize and understand the plan so they are satisfied before ordering and so there are no surprises. They will also be able to share the plan and the 3D rendering with a significant other if they were not available for the initial consultation.

EK: Is it true that all of your products are made in the USA?

Dave: All of our shelves are hand-crafted in our plant in Alabama to the clients’ exact specs. Our rails and some accessories are sourced elsewhere, either domestically or from overseas.

EK: Can homeowners select different wood finishes?

Kelli: Our Glide-Outs come in several styles and finishes, including basic, classic, and designer. The most popular choice is our classic finish, which is light wood in color with matching melamine bottoms that are scratch and stain resistant. All designer and classic Glide-Outs come standard with quiet, steel side rails that can hold more than 100 pounds each.

EK: Tell us about the ShelfGenie® warranty.

Dave: We give a 100% lifetime guarantee on parts and installation for all classic and designer products.

EK: How can our readers learn more about ShelfGenie®? What is the best way to reach you?

Kelli: We encourage people to check us out on our website, www.shelfgenie.com/east-tennessee, or to give us a call at 865-409-1197 to set up a design consultation.

EK: In closing, is there anything you would like to add?

Dave: Since opening ShelfGenie® late last year, the response has been outstanding, and we’re very appreciative of that. Our team has been able to work with great folks throughout the Knoxville area, and it’s very satisfying to see how happy they are with ShelfGenie®.

ShelfGenie®
865.409.1197
www.shelfgenie.com/east-tennessee

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Gallian Medial Group

Delivering Caring and Compassionate Healthcare the Way You Remember It

Advances in medical science in the United States have dramatically enhanced life expectancies from 54.1 years in 1918 to 78.6 years in 2017. However, the financial costs of sustaining and enhancing these revolutionary advances have taken their toll on both hospitals and medical providers. Rural hospital closings are expected to increase, as are the number of hospital consolidations. In fact, it is estimated that only 50% of our current health system will remain in the next decade. Add to that that only one-third of physicians today remain in private practice, and it’s easy to understand why patients who once placed an immense value on their relationships with their physicians feel that their medical care is driven primarily by the providers’ bottom line rather than their real medical needs. But a growing number of private practice medical providers are pushing back against this managed care trend that so closely resembles the socialized medical models we see in Europe and elsewhere today.

Launched by husband and wife team, Scott Gallian, MD, MBA, and U.S. Air Force veteran, and Lauran Gallian, FNP-BC, Gallian Medical Group in nearby Hardin Valley offers a fresh and totally new approach to providing caring and compassionate, full-service primary care to their patients, unlike the current trend that our healthcare system has embarked on. Complete with in-house diagnostic lab, EKG and X-ray services, Gallian Medical Group offers their patients a level of medical excellence not often found in many clinics today.

What patients appreciate the most about Gallian Medical Group is a level of compassionate caring that they remember from the past and is difficult to find today. Gone are the “bus station-like” waiting room experiences and “steeple chase-like” visits with your healthcare provider. What remains is a husband and wife team and a group of experienced and dedicated medical professionals who are totally committed to your individual healthcare needs in a caring, compassionate, and unrushed environment.

We trust that you are going to enjoy this month’s issue of Everything Knoxville, where we are excited to feature Scott and Lauren. Rediscover an entirely new level of personalized healthcare that you might have thought no longer existed today.

EK: Tell our readers a little bit about your medical training and backgrounds.

Scott: I graduated medical school from LSU and have an MBA from The University of Tennessee. I was a hospitalist for seven years and have been doing outpatient medicine since 2014.

Lauren: I went to nursing school at the University of Alabama-Birmingham and received my master’s in nursing from Vanderbilt University. I was an ICU nurse for many years before working as a nurse practitioner, which I began in 2012.

EK: It would appear that your past combined experience in area hospitals and clinics was the basis for the creation of Gallian Medical Group. Describe those experiences.

Scott: In the outpatient setting, we felt as if our employers were dictating care, not the patient. In the hospital, we were able to take whatever time we needed to solve a problem. We wanted to put the focus back on the patient and give them ample time to help treat their problems and not lock them into a 15-minute box.

EK: What medical services does Gallian Medical Group provide?

Lauren: We provide evidence-based primary care for patients age 12 and up. We have our own lab and X-ray machine. We also perform EKGs and spirometry services. We’re open Monday through Friday from 7 am to 6 pm to accommodate as many patients as possible

EK: How do your patients react to your unrushed approach to medicine, where you actively engage them in conversation while listening carefully to their concerns?

Scott: They thoroughly enjoy it. When I ask a new patient why they are switching doctors, I usually hear, “I felt rushed” or “I don’t feel I was listened to.” We want to work with the patient to achieve their goals and take the time with them that’s necessary to make sure we’re all on the same page.

EK: Because you are free from any corporate control, how do you feel your patients benefit?

Lauren: Choice. If they need a service we can’t provide, then they are free to go wherever they like. They can choose any specialist, any hospital, any other ancillary service they want – not just the ones under a certain corporate umbrella.

EK: Your personal philosophy that patients are loyal to their healthcare providers and not the corporations that control them is a breath of fresh air in today’s healthcare and business marketplaces. What has been the response from your patients?

Scott: They love it. They want a provider they can stay with for life, not someone that will move on after the provider’s contract expires or if the corporate employer makes decisions affecting the doctor-patient relationship. Patients want their provider, not a replacement or substitute. We plan on being here for many years to come.

EK: Unlike other area healthcare providers that experience high staff turnover, your team has been with you for a number of years. How important is this to your patients?

Lauren: Extremely important. Our staff is a big reason for our success. We feel the patients’ relationship with our staff is as important as the patients’ relationship with us. Our staff is like family to us.

EK: What is a typical patient wait time?

Scott: Most of the time less than 15 minutes. Rarely more than 30 minutes.

EK: You appear to attract a great many Medicare patients. Why is that?

Lauren: Medicare patients are a special population. They generally have more healthcare needs and have higher expectations than other groups of patients. They usually are more in tune with their health than a younger person and more self-educated about their health. We want them to know we’re here to meet their expectations and provide the quality care they deserve.

EK: What other types of insurance do you accept?

Scott: Almost all commercial insurances, Medicare, and Medicare Advantage plans. We don’t discriminate based on a patient’s insurance status.

EK: How can people learn more about Gallian Medical Group?

Lauren: Our website is www.gallianmedical.com. We also encourage people to visit our Facebook page.

EK: In closing, is there anything else you would like to add?

Scott: We want your readers to know that there are plenty of excellent doctors and nurse practitioners here in Knoxville. We also want them to know that we will go the extra mile to ensure they have a truly wonderful healthcare experience.

Gallian Medical Group
10744 Hardin Valley Road
Knoxville, TN 37932
865.383.7223
www.gallianmedical.com

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Exit Realty

Discover a Fresh Approach to Today’s Residential Real Estate Marketplace

In today’s real estate marketplace, most buyers and sellers share a generic view of the agents that act on their behalf.  You sign an agreement, the “for sale” sign goes up, ads go online and in print, buyers make inquiries, offers are made, contracts are signed, and a closing occurs.  But decisions to buy and sell real estate are rarely that simple and often require the combined skills of a trusted real estate professional that can also act in an advisory role.

Local entrepreneur and Exit Real Estate Associate Broker, Jesse Boling, first began his self-employment career at a very early age in his parent’s business and later launched two successful businesses, CH Interiors & Gifts in 2013 and Knox Graphics & Design in 2017.  Jesse’s success in retail came about largely from his unique ability to build winning teams of associates and to differentiate his companies from his competition.  Success also resulted from developing lasting relationships, comprehensive marketing strategies, and by developing all of the necessary skills needed to succeed at every new venture.

Today, as an Associate Broker at Exit Real Estate Professionals Network, Jesse has combined his years of successful entrepreneurship, along with Exit Realty’s commitment to provide the highest level of professionalism and training, offering each of their clients an uncommon level of expertise when buying and selling a home in today’s fast-paced and evolving real estate marketplace.  We hope you will enjoy this recent interview with Jesse.

EK: How have your years of experience as an entrepreneur and business owner prepared you for today’s residential real estate marketplace?

Jesse: Success in any worthwhile endeavor involves planning.  Before launching any new business, every aspect of that new venture must be thoroughly examined, considered, and planned for.  Comprehensive analysis and plans must then be developed.  But, even more importantly, you need to consider the human component for every transaction, never forgetting that there are family members emotionally invested in every home that is bought or sold.

EK: What is the most important characteristic or skill required to succeed in residential real estate?

Jesse: While there are a variety of skills required for success, the most important skill is the ability to listen to your clients.  Without the ability to listen, all of your other skills are of little value.

EK: You had multiple real estate companies to select from.  What made you choose Exit Real Estate Professionals Network?

Jesse: That’s simple.  It was their comprehensive approach and commitment to provide a level of client service that is uncommon in today’s marketplace.  It was the same commitment I made to each of my customers in my retail businesses that was required to achieve success; a commitment to provide a level of service that most people thought no longer existed today.

EK: How would you describe a typical “buyer’s” experience?

Jesse: As I stated earlier, it begins with listening.  What are the buyer’s expectations? What are their priorities (schools, shopping, proximity to work, emergency services, churches)?  We need to determine budget and pursue mortgage pre-approval.  These are just a few of the requirements we need to consider, allowing us to transform ourselves from a real estate professional to a trusted advisor and ally.

EK: How would you describe a typical “seller’s” experience?

Jesse: Well, listening still is my number one priority.  We need to establish a current market price for the seller’s home, as well as a realistic timeframe for the sale to take place.  There are also a large number of recommendations we might make to the seller to enhance the probability for success at the highest possible price.  This is also where our team goes to work to create a comprehensive marketing plan designed to achieve a successful outcome.

EK: How important is communication in the buying and selling process?

Jesse: Next to listening, communication is perhaps the most often neglected component in the real estate experience.  Buyers and sellers deserve to be in the loop to whichever degree they wish to be included.  Also, with all of the communication tools available today, there’s really no excuse not to keep buyers and sellers informed.  Regardless, it’s the number one complaint we hear from buyers and sellers today.

EK: If a reader has an interest in buying, selling, or perhaps purchasing an income property, what is the best way for them to reach you?

Jesse: Those interested in reaching me can call or text me at 865-335-7270 or email me at j.boling865@gmail.com.

EK: In closing, is there anything you would like to add?

Jesse: I would first like to thank the many thousands of people that have helped us to succeed in business, in addition to the countless friendships that have occurred as a result.  I would also like to ask you for the opportunity to earn your trust as an advisor and real estate professional on any residential real estate opportunity that you may become part of in the future.

Jesse C. Boling, REALTOR®

Exit Real Estate Professionals Network
865.383.3948 office
865.335.7270 cell
Jesse.FindKnoxvilleHouses.com

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CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee

The Most Trusted and Referred Residential & Commercial Painting Company in East Tennessee!

Spring is the perfect time of the year to tackle those projects to update your home or business that perhaps you have been postponing, and there is not a faster or more cost-effective way to update your interior and exterior surfaces than painting. With literally thousands of colors and finishes to select from, you are sure to discover those just-so-perfect colors for your every mood, every space, and every project in your home or business.

Experts understand that the successful outcome of every painting project rests entirely on your selection of a painting contractor. The selection of a paint brand, paint type, and colors are secondary. So just how do you know if your choice of a painter is the right choice?

In this issue of Everything Knoxville, we are pleased to share this interview with CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee owners, and husband and wife team, Jeff and Joann Brown. CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee is the proud recipient of numerous awards and honors for their expertise in the fields of both residential and commercial painting during the last 15 years, and they continue to earn a reputation for honesty, integrity, value, and quality craftsmanship.

EK: Describe the CertaPro Painters process and how this process differentiates you in the residential and commercial painting marketplace.

Jeff: We work very hard to make the painting experience “certain” for our customers. I believe people generally think that working with contractors is often just more trouble than it is worth. So, we work hard to do what we say we will do, doing it as scheduled, on time and on budget with as little disruption as possible to customers’ lives at work or home.

EK: At CertaPro, you state that you “don’t paint houses – you paint lives” and that you “don’t paint commercial businesses – you paint people’s livelihoods.” How is this approach not only unique, but also important to your customers?

Joann: We understand how busy our customers’ lives can be, so we respect and value their time. We know they have hired CertaPro because they want a quality job at a fair price, and they don’t want to have to worry about the project they have hired us to perform. They may continue with their regular schedule and let us take care of the rest without the hassles.

EK: Perhaps the number one complaint of both home and business owners when hiring a contractor is poor communication. How do you overcome this communication challenge with your customers?

Jeff: We start by listening to the needs of our customers, consulting with them about their project scope, needs, timing, vision, and budget. We provide detailed written proposals quickly, review it in person with the customer the morning we start the project, provide daily updates to the customer, and at the end, we perform a “pride walk” to ensure the project is 100% complete in their eyes!

EK: How do the prices at CertaPro compare to those of your competitors?

Joann: We research this regularly and find that our prices are very competitive with every other professional painting contractors. By professional, I mean a company that carries workers’ compensation and liability insurance, a company who has been in business for several years and offers a warranty, a company whose painters go through training to make sure they follow company policies, a company that doesn’t ask for money up front but only at the end of the project when everything is complete and the customer is satisfied. That is CertaPro, and we want to help protect your largest investment!

EK: CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee has earned the distinction of being the most referred painted in the entire area. You have also earned a reputation for achieving a nearly 98% customer retention rate, with almost half of your new clients coming from existing customers’ referrals. Why should this be important to prospective new customers?

Jeff: Trust is the first word that comes to mind. We believe our customers call us time and time again because we have proven to them that we do what we say, do it timely, with little disruption and at very competitive prices. We work hard to earn and keep their trust.

EK: What other services do you offer your clients?

Joann: In addition to interior and exterior painting, we offer pressure washing, drywall removal and installation, drywall repair, concrete staining, wood repair and replacement, stucco repair, knockdown/texturing, wallpaper removal and installation, and small remodel projects. (Bathroom remodel, mud room addition, screen porch or deck additions, and commercial build-out are a few examples.)

EK: Contrast your “consultation” proposal method to the “estimate” alternative used by your competition, and tell our readers why this is so important.

Jeff: Often our homeowners know they want or need to paint or do repairs but they are unsure of color, scope of work, materials, etc. We listen to what our customers want and work with them to ensure they get what they are looking for, and then we detail it with a written proposal. An estimate is vague, usually just a number, and frequently winds up in disappointment.

EK: What kind of warranty do you offer your customers?

Joann: We offer a written warranty both residentially and commercially. More importantly, we ensure we do it right the first time so a customer is not inconvenienced by a warranty issue!

EK: What is the best way for prospective new customers to learn more about CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee?

Jeff: If someone is considering a project, they should give us a call and one of our sales associates will come to their home or business and provide a free consultation about the project, and they can also learn more about our company and services.

EK: In closing, is there anything else you would like to tell our readers?

Joann: We would like to say thank you to all of our loyal customers who we have worked for during the past 15 years. We know you have many choices, and we truly appreciate you letting CertaPro into your homes and businesses. If you haven’t given CertaPro a try, please give us a call for a complimentary consultation and estimate. We have an amazing team who is always anxious to help. Thank you, East Tennessee!

CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee
865.470.0001
east-tennessee.certapro.com

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Synergy Auto Wash

It’s been six years since local entrepreneur, Brian Davis, first launched Synergy Auto Wash just east of Farragut at 10500 Kingston Pike in Knoxville. An instant success, Synergy Auto Wash has now grown to three locations thanks largely to Synergy’s loyal customer base that is attracted to a level of customer service that is difficult to find elsewhere. With locations in Knoxville and Morristown, and now with its newly opened flagship store in Halls, Synergy Auto Wash has become East Tennessee’s premier, full-service express hand auto wash.

But what you may not know is that Synergy Auto Wash originally began as a dare. Brian, who might best be described as a “car guy,” was voicing his displeasure to good friends about a local car wash he had just visited. “Half the dirt was still on my car, and the dirt trapped on the soft cloth wash equipment used at the car wash from vehicles washed earlier was beginning to scratch my car’s exterior finish,” complained Brian. In a “put up or shut up moment,” Brian accepted their challenge and launched his first car wash in 2012.

Whether you’re a business owner or an entrepreneur, we think that you are going to enjoy this interview with Brian.

EK: We understand your response to the challenge from your friends, but you chose to launch Synergy Auto Wash during the most recent recession when most entrepreneurs elected to hibernate. Describe your thoughts at the time.

Brian: Yes, the economy was a mess at the time, but one thing I learned through the downturn in the economy was to diversify. With so many vehicles on the road, whose value owners wanted to protect, I felt that a hand wash alternative to conventional auto washes would be a success.

EK: While most newly launched businesses favor high levels of automation with as little customer interaction as possible, you chose to provide a level of customer service that most would agree is uncommon today. Explain.

Brian: I think most new business owners are trying to achieve the “less labor as possible” model, because labor is the largest controllable expense of most businesses. Most of our competition employ very few employees and a lot of automated equipment that only washes the exterior of your vehicle, requiring the customer to clean the inside, which is typically the most time consuming part of cleaning your car. We chose to offer a car wash alternative that makes it much easier for our customers by providing a full-service, hand wash, upscale facility performed in a safe and efficient manner by trained, hand-mitted associates. While our labor costs are higher, our volume and efficiencies allow us to offer very competitive prices that are often less than the competition.

EK: Were you surprised by your customers’ responses to Synergy Auto Wash?

Brian: I wasn’t surprised by the amount of business volume we experienced almost from the start, because I felt that when given the option of hand washing over automated washing, customers who were genuinely interested in protecting their vehicle’s finish would naturally be attracted to Synergy. I was pleasantly surprised by the kindness and encouragement expressed by so many of our customers who continue to praise our concept. Becoming friends with so many of our customers has truly become one of the most rewarding aspects of this business.

EK: While Synergy Auto Wash selectively uses automation at its three locations, why do you believe that it is important that no automated equipment touch your car?

Brian: Since we have no equipment that comes in contact with your vehicle, we don’t have to worry about the type of damage that can occur at fully automated car washes. Secondly, I can’t imagine anyone feeling comfortable watching automated mitters, side brushes, and spinning wraps, which are found in most conventional car washes today, contact their vehicles after the very same cloth just washed that filthy car in front of theirs or, even worse, that cloth that went into the bed of that pickup truck just before running up the hood and roof of your vehicle. Vehicles washed in this manner often show swirl marks in their painted finishes as a result of dirt and abrasives trapped on this equipment coming into contact with the exterior surfaces of their automobile. Hand washing is really the only safe and thorough way to clean a vehicle

EK: What other services do you offer at Synergy Auto Wash?

Brian: To make things easy for our customers, we’ve created a menu of services that you can pick out at any one of our three locations, or you can view them online at www.synergyautowash.com. We offer four basic washes that range from $8-$26 (tax inclusive). If you require additional services or if you’re in the mood to pamper yourself a little, we also offer an A La Carte menu that consists of a variety of services, including a buff wax, carpet shampoo, leather cleaning and conditioning of the seats, dash/door panels/console protectant, and other services to help keep your vehicle looking showroom new and protected.

EK: What else would you like our readers to know about Synergy Auto Wash?

Brian: 1. We offer a full-service, all hand wash facility concept at all three of our locations that nobody else in East Tennessee offers, nor can compete with, and we offer it at a price unavailable elsewhere.
2. With the help of our district manager, Keith Hall, my mom. and our entire Synergy Auto Wash Customer Care Team, we take great pride in providing a level of exceptional customer service that we guarantee to be the best in the area.
3. We are committed to delivering the highest quality hand wash available. If you aren’t satisfied, we will wash your vehicle again until you are fully satisfied.

EK: You said that once someone tried Synergy Auto Wash, you had a customer for life. Why?

Brian: It is amazing to hear all the positive comments we receive every day. We have people that drive from all across East Tennessee to take advantage of the superior customer service we offer. When we see a customer for the first time, it is usually only a matter of days or weeks before we see them again.

EK: Has the success of Synergy Auto Wash exceeded your expectations?

Brian: There is a risk inherent in launching any new concept, but the dramatic decrease in customer service that consumers have begun to experience during the last decade or so has actually worked to our advantage. People are tired of today’s one-size-fits-all customer service model. Who isn’t shocked today when a human being answers their phone call? I was convinced from the very beginning that customers would respond favorably to our high level of customer service. I have not been disappointed.

EK: In closing, is there anything else you would like to add?

Brian: If someone asked me, “Why should I try Synergy Auto Wash?” I would say this: We are a family-run, small business that excels in customer service and quality. We hand wash every vehicle in the safest and most efficient environment, and all at a price that is competitive with our competition. We invite you to experience the Synergy Auto Wash difference for yourself. I would also like to thank all of our loyal customers for helping to make Synergy Auto Wash the success that it is and for providing an employment opportunity for all of our team members.

Synergy Auto Wash

10500 Kingston Pike in Knoxville
865.297.3403

6852 Maynardville Pike in Halls
865.922.7438

1333 W. Andrew Johnson Hwy in Morristown
423.586.0471

www.synergyautowash.com

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Granite Transformations for Kitchens & Baths

Everything Knoxville is excited to share our recent interview featuring husband and wife team and local area entrepreneurs, Buddy and Patti Baker. Since first launching Granite Transformations 13 years ago, Buddy and Patti have truly exemplified the principles of success, even in a challenging economic environment, having been recognized as one of the top performing Granite Transformations franchises in the world. Their commitment to success continues to serve as an inspiration to many other area small business owners.

From their very first sales center, to their new Design and Discovery Center and state-of-the-art fabrication facility in West Knoxville, Granite Transformations continues to earn a reputation for outstanding quality, craftsmanship, and integrity.

EK: First of all, congratulations on achieving your 13-year milestone in business. What do you feel has been the single most important factor in your success?

Buddy: Well, it’s hard to pinpoint just one factor. I believe we owe our success to our unique products and proprietary processes and our unwavering commitment to excellence.

EK: Buddy, you spent years in the retail buying industry. What inspired you and Patti to venture out on your own into the world of self-employment?

Buddy: When Belk acquired Proffitts, where I was employed, we considered other opportunities, but we decided to pursue our very own American dream. Owning our own business provided us with the opportunity to take the skills we had learned in corporate America and to combine them with our own unique talents to create a business model that exceeded our customers’ expectations and that we could personally be proud of.

EK: While you have meticulously implemented a well-thought out marketing strategy, share with our readers just how important the quality of Granite Transformations’ engineered granite product is when compared to conventional slab granite.

Buddy: Before launching Granite Transformations, we were committed to identifying a product that was far superior to anything our competition might offer. Simply put, conventional granite can’t match the superior performance characteristics of our proprietary engineered granite surfaces. In fact, we are the only granite surface that can be used in commercial kitchens, where food safety is paramount.

EK: Tell us what other ways your granite products can be used in our homes.

Patti: Our products are designed to be used on just about any flat surface. Its strong physical characteristics allow us to install our granite products just about anywhere, from floor to ceiling, despite its thinner profile. Conventional granite, on the other hand, requires a thicker profile to compensate for its inherent weakness.

EK: What other products and services does Granite Transformations offer homeowners?

Patti: We also offer homeowners premium grade cabinet refacing. We can transform your home’s cabinets in just a matter of days, providing a completely new look to your kitchen or bath. Our process eliminates both the demolition and cost associated with replacing existing cabinets with new cabinets.  Certified by the Green Builders Council, Granite Transformations is committed to eco-friendly building practices through reducing or eliminating unnecessary demolition.

EK: Two major advantages you offer that many homeowners may not be aware of are your quick turnarounds and significant reduction in costly demolition. How does the Granite Transformations experience make that possible?

Buddy: Because we install our proprietary granite surfaces on top of your home’s existing countertops, most countertops can be installed in a single day with no demolition required. We like to say “Done in a Day, Beautiful for Life.” We even provide our customers a limited lifetime warranty on our countertops.

EK: Cabinet refacing continues to become a growing business within Granite Transformations. Explain.

Buddy: It just makes sense. Cabinet refacing in just one day is not only smart, but it’s very smart. Weeks without your kitchen while installing new cabinets is a major disruption in your family’s life. With our resurfacing system, you can get your new kitchen in just a few days.

EK: In addition to your Design and Discovery Center, you also have design consultants that offer homeowners free, in-home consultations. How do your in-home consultations benefit your customers?

Buddy: This is just a common sense strategy we embrace at Granite Transformations that better serves you, our customer. Many of our competitors will quote your project based on the information you provide while never visiting your home unless you buy. To assist you in making this important buying decision, we believe that it is critical for you to view our products in your own home, in your lighting, next to your cabinets and flooring, before you make this very important decision. Granite Transformations will bring a mini design center right into your home. This process offers greater peace of mind to our customers.

EK: How can our readers learn more about Granite Transformations?

Patti: We invite you to visit our Design Center at 10539 Lexington Drive in West Knoxville or visit us online at www.granitetransformations.com/knoxville.

EK: Any last thoughts you would like to share with our readers?

Patti: We would both like to express our deep appreciation and gratitude to the thousands of Granite Transformations customers who have contributed to our success. We look forward to the next 13 years of making your dream for a showcase kitchen and bath come true.

What Our Customers Are Saying:

“Your sales representatives answered all my questions and promptly returned all my calls.  Your installers did an incredible job.  My kitchen looks gorgeous!” – Daniela S. (4/18/2017)

“Your salesperson was professional, courteous, and helpful.  We also appreciate your installers calling ahead, being on time, and leaving our home neat and clean.  We love the color of our granite.” – Wayne & Josephine B. (12/20/2017)

“All your installers worked straight through, keeping us up-to-date on their progress.  I appreciate them using protective floor coverings and their attention to the care of our home.  Beautiful!  Fabulous!” – Doug & Cathryne H. (12/14/2017)

“We are very pleased and appreciate all that Granite Transformations has done.  You’ve been great!” – Judy H. (10/16/2017)

“From our first contract with your business about a year ago, everyone we have dealt with was very helpful, knowledgeable, efficient, and professional.” – Marilyn G. (4/24/2017)

“Your sales rep was great – very courteous and helpful.  Installers were professional, courteous, and clean.  Great job.  We are very pleased.  Love it!” – Mary N. (3/16/2017)

Granite Transformations

10539 Lexington Drive
Knoxville, TN 37932
865.622.2381

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