Erie Chamber Blog
Friday September 13, 2019 

Happy National Chocolate Day!

  • reflection
  • inspiration
  • chocolate
Thursday September 12, 2019 

September 24th and October 3rd

Communicating Through Differences Webinar

Presented by: Melissa Sulkowski, RN, MA, LPC, Owner, Nurturinse

Tuesday, September 24 – various times throughout the day

Register Here

This webinar is free and open to the public, however, you must register to receive the link to access the content.

Are you experiencing breakdowns in communication among your staff? Would you like everyone in your company to be better able to communicate with each other and with you? If so, this session is for you!

This webinar will cover how to create the conditions to effectively communicate through differences. Do gender differences, personality differences and the differences in our stories influence the outcome? The focus will be on empowering individuals to gain insight and awareness around how they "show up" and contribute to the interaction. When a conversation is nurtured from a space of curiosity and clarity rather than assumption and prediction, there is room to reshape the conversation. As we become more attune to what we need and more aware of how we go about getting our needs met, the opportunity to rewrite the story becomes accessible. Valuing differences while establishing healthy boundaries will lead to an emotionally safe conversation and harmonize the human exchange.


 B Corps and Benefit Companies Webinar

Presented by: John Leemhuis, Owner, Leemhuis Legal

Thursday, October 3 – various times throughout the day

Register Here

This webinar is free and open to the public, however, you must register to receive the link to access the content.

Are you curious about operating a business that respects people, profit, AND the planet? It can be done! Join this webinar to learn what you can do to make your business more socially responsible.

Businesses have historically operated with the sole purpose of enhancing shareholder value. A societal shift in the perspective of investors, employees, and consumers has increased the need for business to operate in a different, socially responsible manner. Operating as a B Corp or benefit company addresses these constituent demands by functioning in a manner that recognizes how business impacts the local and global environment, its workforce, supply chain, and the community. See how this new way of doing can be a game-changer for businesses and entrepreneurs that want to make a profit, but wish to do so in a socially responsible manner.

  • webinar
  • communication
  • business
  • business practices
  • chamber of commerce
Wednesday September 11, 2019 

Molly Brannigan's Hosts September Event

Our monthly morning networking event was hosted by Red Letter Hospitality at Molly Brannigan's in downtown Erie. Attendees who hadn't visited the establishment since the renovations had been completed were complimentary in their surroundings. Bright, open, and cozy were just a few of the words we heard as people shared their thoughts on the new Mollys.

A little about our host. Red Letter Hospitality purchased the business a year ago July, and have been working to make Molly Brannigan's a great gathering spot downtown with events like Drink Along Sing Along with the Erie Phil to draw guests in. Several spaces are available in the building for private parties and they are booking up quickly for the upcoming holiday's (so get your party booked soon!). Mollys is also the official Cleveland Browns bar, so if you like the Browns and need a place to watch the game, there you go.

What we learned from a few of our members:

  • Spectrum Reach, more than cable, your data and media solutions company
  • Team Hardinger is celebrating 50 years in the trucking industry in Erie!
  • UPMC WorkPartners' Life Solutions is an Employee Assistance Program that offers short term counseling, referral services, and a suite of additional health management and wellness programs
  • McBrier Properties has available office and retail space for lease, as well as V gallery, a creative space for pop-up retail, exhibits, brand promotion, etc. Located in the Village West, this showcase space is for short-term, temporary promotions

Thank you again to the team at Molly Brannigans for hosting our September Connect 4 Coffee!

View Event Photos

  • networking
  • coffee
  • b2b
  • connections
  • chamber of commerce
Monday September 9, 2019 

You Don't Have to be a Tech Genius to Make It Happen

submitted by Cathy Szymanski, Szymanski Consulting, Inc.

Data security and privacy should be every small business owner’s top priority in this day when cybercriminals are on the loose. The good news is you don’t have to be a tech genius to make it happen. Here are practical ways to shield your company from cyberattacks. 

Cover your webcam

If Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, former FBI Director James Comey, and National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden all believe their webcams could be compromised, there’s no reason you should feel safe. They’re not overreacting because of some ruthless paparazzi that’s hounding them. It’s a fact that cybercriminals can use your webcam to spy on you. 

Though it might sound like a scene from an action movie or crime thriller, this has actually happened on several occasions. Hackers do this either to satisfy their voyeuristic tendencies or, more commonly, to steal personal information. This is a very real threat with disturbing repercussions. 

With your webcam, cybercriminals can examine your surroundings, determine your location, as well as spy on the people you’re with. They can use this information to hold you ransom and threaten to broadcast your most intimate and vulnerable moments if you don’t pay up. 

Fortunately, guarding yourself against this danger is easy. Covering your webcam should do the trick. You can use regular tape, or you can purchase a cheap webcam cover online. 

Use a privacy shield

Think of privacy guards as those iPhone screen protectors but with an anti-snooping feature. These are thin covers you put on your computer, laptop, or smartphone screen to limit viewing angles. Once installed, anyone trying to look at your screen from anywhere — except straight-on — sees nothing. 

Privacy filters are commonly used to protect work devices that display or contain critical files with sensitive data or confidential information. However, less sensitive, personal devices are still vulnerable to “shoulder surfing” — the act of peeking at someone else’s screen, with or without ill intent. This is the reason we recommend using these protectors on all devices. 

Get a physical authentication key

Requiring more than one set of credentials to access sensitive resources has become the standard practice for established online services. With two-factor authentication in place, you can gain access to your account only after you’ve entered an authentication code. This is something that the website sends to your smartphone once you’ve entered your account credentials. 

Until recently, two-factor authentication relied mostly on text messages sent to mobile phones. But professionals now realize that phones can be hijacked to redirect text messages. Moreover, authentication codes can be stolen, or users can be tricked into entering these codes via a convincing phishing website. 

If you’re looking for authentication services that can’t be hijacked, stolen, or lost, your best bet is a USB or Bluetooth key that you can carry always. This means nobody — not even you — will be able to access your account without the physical key. Talk about ultimate security at your fingertips. 

  • cyber security
  • small business
  • privacy shield
Friday September 6, 2019 
  • reflection
  • motivation
  • extraordinary
  • chamber of commerce

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