Sneak Pique – Networking in a Digital Age Recap

    Sneak Pique – Networking in a Digital Age Recap

    Sneak Pique Recap

    Pique rescheduled tentatively for Fall 2021

    Welcome special guests from Converse College – Professor John Jeter’s “Build your brand” class

    Creating a Safer Upstate Initiative – Stinson Ferguson introduced the initiative and invited interested parties to contact Justine Allen for more information.

    Networking in a Digital Age presentation

    Please see the chat stream and additional resources below:

    From John Jeter to Everyone: My emails are and If y’all would be willing to share your emails, that would be cool.

    From Jessica Miserendino to Everyone: Great Info Abby! When we host our in-person Pique, we plan to have a headshot booth set up to help enhance your LinkedIn profile!

    From Sarah Butler to Everyone: If there are any USC Upstate Alumni in the house, here is how to get involved with Alumni Relations:

    From Sarah Butler to Everyone: Each college and university in Spartanburg has a Handshake account:

    From John Jeter to Everyone: Career Services and Development on campus would be your “HR office.”

    From Jordan Christian to Everyone: For my fellow Tigers:

    From Dean Hybl to Everyone: As a supervisor, I think an employee has to be careful not to be so focused on creating their own personal brand that they seem less interested in supporting the work of the organization. I like the comment about personal reputation more than a personal brand.

    From Sarah Butler to Everyone: Career Services at colleges and universities in Spartanburg:

    Converse College –

    Spartanburg Community College –

    Spartanburg Methodist College –

    USC Upstate –

    Wofford College –

    From Dean Hybl to Everyone: Great points about relationship building. That can be critical in helping build your knowledge base and network.

    From Sarah Butler to Everyone: Abby and Joey– I know you do heavy recruiting for ScanSource specifically, but how much have you reached out to job seekers using LinkedIn? What are things you like to see and what are things you could stand to never see again?

    From Justine Allen-Ten at the Top to Everyone: Sometimes I pick up the phone instead of emailing, thoughts?

    From Evan Carr to Everyone: Justine, I agree and do the same thing – for me it depends on timing and the content of my questions and requests. Sometimes also depends on how well I know that person and their preferences.

    From John Jeter to Everyone: Making calls. Yes!

    From Sarah Butler to Everyone: I can confirm and testify about the ScanSource Opportunities. There have been NUMEROUS times when my students have wanted to learn more about the company and the opportunities there. Abby, Joey, and their entire HR team have been extremely helpful in making those connections. I’ve had the same experience with a number of our upstate region companies. It just takes a call or email! They are very helpful and responsive.:)

    From Jason Weidman to Everyone: Absolutely, Justine! I totally agree picking up the phone is the way to go. Quicker connections and results.

    From Stinson Ferguson to Everyone: Avoid typos on your profile AND in your posts!From John Jeter to Everyone: What about adding blogs/stories on your LinkedIn site?

    From Evan Carr to Everyone: And Volunteer work (aside from Boards/Committees)?

    From John Jeter to Everyone: Love this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    From Ryan Gravely to Everyone: It’s been super informative! Thank you

    From Brittney Scurry to Everyone: lunchclub


    Upcoming Event and Resource Links:

    Ten at the Top

    Upstate Entrepreneur Ecosystem Workshop

    Second Draw PPP – Feb. 4

    10:58:24 From Justine Allen-Ten at the Top to Everyone: TATT Chat – Feb. 18

    Upstate Mobility Alliance

    How Transportation Creates Community Vibrancy – Feb. 23

    Upstate Professional Planners

    Greenlink Presentation on Mobility – Feb. 24

    Britton Rodgers: If you are in Anderson I would love to give you information on our Young Philanthropist Program!

    Brittney Scurry: LunchClub is a great way to network with people all over the country

    Sarah Butler: Spartanburg Young Professionals (SYP)

    Jessica Miserendino: If anyone is interested in joining the Pique planning committee, please reach out to Justine! We are looking for new members and would appreciate any input or feedback!

    Natalie Jones: Anderson Rising, the premier Young Professionals group in Anderson County, has many exciting events coming up including Networking Lunches (virtual, of course), after hours, and professional development events. I am happy to answer any questions –

    Jordan Campbell: If anyone in here is located in the Clemson Area, the Clemson Chamber is working to start a new Young Professionals group. If you are interested in the program and would like to be a part of the planning committee, please shoot me an email at so that I can get you some information!

    Emelie Hegarty: My email address is if anyone is interested in more information on learning about how to turn an idea into a business; start-ups hiring in the Upstate; etc.

    Britton Rodgers: Here is a little more info: I am happy to talk with you all further. I hope you will join us at United Way! As a Young Philanthropist, you can look forward to:

    Serving our community through regular volunteer opportunities. Connecting with like-minded peers to expand your network and give back to our community.

    Learning about our area’s most pressing challenges and the ways in which you can help address them through philanthropy and service. Developing your professional skills through regular development opportunities.

    Senator Tim Scott’s Small Business Policy Advisor and Greenville Area SBDC Manager to Speak on PPP Second Draw

    Senator Tim Scott’s Small Business Policy Advisor and Greenville Area SBDC Manager to Speak on PPP Second Draw

    Greenville, SC | January 26, 2021 – On Wednesday, February 3rd, the Upstate Entrepreneur Ecosystem will host a “PPP 2nd Draw” virtual workshop from 3:00 to 4:00 pm. This event is open to the public and is specifically for professionals or organizations that support and advise business owners, entrepreneurs or non-profits.  It will feature Kunal Parikh, Policy Advisor for Senator Tim Scott, and Earl Gregorich, Area Manager of the Greenville Small Business Development Center.

    “Having assisted in the development of both the first and second round of PPP loans, I am excited to provide insights on how small businesses, lenders, and others can help the most vulnerable Americans,” said Kunal Parikh, Policy Advisor for Senator Tim Scott. “These small business owners have put it all on the line, and we owe it to them to help them get back on their feet. When they succeed, America succeeds.”

    This workshop will include a comprehensive panel discussion on key changes and provisions in the new economic recovery act, including $10,000 EIDL Grants, PPP, and SBA Debt Relief Extensions. Guest speakers, Kunal Parikh and Earl Gregorich, will emphasize the differences in PPP 1st Draw and 2nd Draw, answer questions and provide critical information on associated deadlines.

    “Business owners are facing several challenges right now. Unfortunately, navigating assistance options may be one of them,” said Earl Gregorich, Area Manager of the Greenville Small Business Development Center (SC SBDC). “The SC SBDC works diligently to simplify the path to the correct programs and to clarify the application processes.”

    The Upstate Entrepreneur Ecosystem, an initiative of Ten at the Top, consists of all organizations and people who work to support entrepreneurs and all types of business owners at all stages in every industry.  It works to increase the capacity and ability of the ecosystem to help entrepreneurs be more successful faster by ensuring entrepreneurs receive the support and information they need.  The UEE conducts regular capacity and capability-building workshops targeting Entrepreneur Support Organizations and facilitates a strong social network through events and other networking or information sharing tools.

    Click here to register for the “PPP 2nd Draw” workshop hosted by Ten at the Top’s Upstate Entrepreneur Ecosystem. To learn more about the resources provided by the Upstate Entrepreneur Ecosystem, please click here.


    Comprised of public, private and civic leaders across the ten-county Upstate South Carolina Region, Ten at the Top was created to build regional trust and consensus through data-driven research and regular convening of leaders and citizens to address key issues facing the region. Ten at the Top works with regional partners to encourage quality growth and enhance the economic vitality, natural and cultural resources and quality of life for Upstate residents both today and as the region continues to grow.

    Click here to view PDF version of this press release.

    Focus on the Future: Key Topics for 2021

    Focus on the Future: Key Topics for 2021

    What is something within your area of focus you are particularly paying attention to heading into 2021? Why?

    As a legislator, I have been focused on education. Covid has consumed much of my attention in 2020. It has also only highlighted the issues within education in SC. The states that are able to capitalize off the disruption will improve relative to other states. The states that cannot will suffer. – Neal Collins

    Pundits and consultants are now saying that mid-size communities like Greenville will actually benefit from the ‘de-urbanization’ trend initiated by COVID 19.  We were already growing at an historic rate and these projections may create an even greater demand from folks fleeing the density of bigger cities in favor of places like the Upstate.  The need for consistent and sustainable land use planning is critical.  If we do not develop more reasonable land use patterns, we will jeopardize the very quality of life that we now enjoy and others find attractive. – Mark Farris

    I am curious about various organization’s return to office space and what changes may occur with floorplans going forward.  Adoption of at-home work, in part or 100%, how does open space change, furniture needs change, wellness minded improvements at the office, focus on cleanliness and all the cost associated with these changes are all very interesting to me.  – David Feild

    For obvious reasons, we are paying attention to what is happening with the virus spread and the intensity of the cases. This impacts our business from many avenues including a claims standpoint, providers ability to treat our members, as well as our groups ability to continue to grow and remain a viable business. Throughout the pandemic it has become apparent that the need to have access to telehealth will remain and this could be an area of growth for our providers, as patients and providers find the convenience of this method of care distribution to be easier and allows the access to be greater. – Angie Gossett

    Headed into 2021 our organization will be focused on the 2021 South Carolina Legislative Session, which begins in January.  Legislative advocacy is the primary focus of SCMA, and there are a number of issues we will be engaged on ranging from workforce and education to economic development and regulatory issues.  We need to ensure that South Carolina’s competitive business climate remains strong, that we are cultivating and supporting our future and current workforce, and that we are always thinking one step ahead on behalf of our state’s manufacturing industry.  – Sara Hazzard

    We are eyeing the speed at which a vaccine is available to the public at-large. In most audience surveys conducted by arts organizations, many individuals stated that they will feel comfortable returning to arts events at the level they did prior to COVID-19 when a vaccine is available. While we of course are paying attention to further monetary and policy COVID relief for the arts industry, the vaccine is the one item that gets arts groups back to “normal”. – G.P. McLeer

    In 2021, I will be paying close attention to small businesses and entrepreneurial support.  2020 has been a very challenging year for local, small businesses and has required many adjustments in the way they operate.  Although many have been successful at staying afloat, I know there are educational opportunities and resources we can offer to help them better prepare for their future as a small business owner.  I understand the importance of these businesses to the character and unique offerings in our communities. – Amanda Munyan

    Education/public secondary – virtual opportunities for secondary education students is an area of interest that I am particularly paying attention to as we move forward.  – Mamie Nicholson

    Product Development.  The recent wave of economic activity in the southeast remains an oracle of what is to come, with residential, commercial and industrial development.  The Upstate needs to remain mindful of key industrial properties that will need to be preserved in and among other sectors.  Without the ability to recruit quality jobs and investment in our future, our overall growth will be limited.  – Katherine O’Neill

    The Piedmont Health Foundation has long been focused on improving transit in Greenville County. The pandemic reminded us that transit is essential for essential workers.  Greenlink’s ridership didn’t drop nearly as much as many larger communities because its riders are so much more dependent on bus service. At the same time, Greenville’s population has continued to grow – even in 2020 as people moved here from larger cities.  So we believe that the work Greenlink staff have done to improve services and plan for the future will be even more vital going forward. – Katy Smith

    Business operations and construction growth in the market. – Chuck Saylors

    Overall business recovery, employment rates, eviction rates because these factors will impact our ability to raise funds and the level of need in our community. – Paige Stephenson

    Has the raised awareness and discussions around racial equity and social justice impacted your business or area of interest? If so, how and what is the ongoing result?

    This is a journey Prisma Health has been on for years.  However, the raised awareness has really created the opportunity for more open conversation.  It is a great culture to instill and get people out of their comfort zone to be able to talk and more importantly…LISTEN AND HEAR!  The journey has been one of education.  However, the raised awareness has allowed for not just education, but practice.  I am very pleased with our progress of learning, understanding and curiosity to continue working toward the full appreciation of one another coming from different backgrounds, situations and circumstances.  What a wonderful thing as we can all learn from one another to ultimately get to our common goals and achieve the missions and purposes of our organizations.  We all have a lot of healing to do, but we can do this together…as one people, one nation, but it HAS to be done with intentionality and purpose.  Again, I am very pleased with progress within Prisma Health thus far, but as with any improvement, we have work to do…TOGETHER! – Justin Benfield

    The raised awareness regarding racial equity and social justice has definitely impacted the factors which I consider when approaching a policy decision.  For instance, we created a permanent position within the Sheriff’s office to manage cultural diversity issues.  In the past, I have been focused on those who were the loudest (i.e. “squeaky wheels”), but I now understand that some groups in our community are so marginalized that they do not even have the energy to speak up; it is the marginalized and the downtrodden that need our attention the most. – Paul Cain

    Racial Justice and Equity took center stage for several weeks early in the summer as Clemson Football Players organized a peaceful march, in which we participated, after the deaths of George Floyd and Briana Taylor.  It was also the catalyst for the formation of a community group called CURE – Clemson United for Race Equity – which has continued to meet and is laying the groundwork for a series of community wide discussions on racial justice and equity. – Susan Cohen

    Yes, in the political world, I would think one has to have blinders on to not be thinking about racial equity and social justice. I hope to do my part in continuing to raise awareness and hopefully having some legislative impact in this area. – Neal Collins

    Yes – the awareness and discussions around racial equity and social justice have greatly affected the work in which I am involved in both private foundations and non-profits. This will be an ongoing conversation and will result in the way entities in which I am involved allocate funds. – Minor Shaw

    Yes, it has been a component of our work. It has now being approached in a much more intentional manner. We are having different conversations within our team and at our board meetings and are developing a plan to operate as a more equitable organization. We have instituted an annual race equity training for our board and team members. Equity measures will be a stated measure in our investment decisions. By July 2021, we will have a formal anti-racism statement that will be publicly posted and guide how we operate. – Paige Stephenson

    To view “Focus on the Future: Understanding the ‘New Normal'”, click here.

    To view Focus on the Future Panelists, click here.

    BBB Warns Tax Season Is Here, But So Are Scammers

    BBB Warns Tax Season Is Here, But So Are Scammers

    The United States’ tax season is here, and so are the scammers. Con artists use the Social Security numbers of unsuspecting Americans to file phony tax returns and steal refunds. On way to protect this information is to use an Identity Protection PIN issued by the IRS. In fact, a number may have been issues to you last year if you file a return online. Be aware of online identity theft with these tips.

    The scam works when online filers that go through the IRS website usually expect a refund. Instead, a written IRS notice arrives in the mail, stating that more than one tax return was filed using their Social Security number.

    What happened, Scammers got hold of personal information, typically the account holder’s Social Security, number, address, and birth date.  They filed your return early and received your refund before you even got around to filing.  Tax ID theft is a particularly sneaky con, because victims don’t realize they’ve been targeted until they file their taxes.

    Scammers steal tax information in several ways, such as a phishing scam, a corrupt tax preparation service, or the information was exposed in a hack or data breach. Sometimes tax scammers file in the name of a deceased person or steal children’s identities to claim them as dependents.

    How to Avoid Tax ID Theft Scams

    • File early. The best way to avoid tax identity is to file your taxes early as possible, before a scammer has the chance to use your information.
    • Watch out for red flags. If a written notice from the IRS arrives in the mail about a duplicate return, respond promptly. Or, is an IRS notice arrives stating you received wages from somewhere you never worked or receive other notices that don’t apply to you, contact the IRS immediately. Another big deal is if you receive a notice that “additional taxes or owed, the refund will be offset or a collection action is being taken against you for a year you did not file a tax return” (IRS). Contact the IRS if you have any suspicions that your identity has been stolen.
    • Protect your Social Security number. Don’t give out your SSN unless there’s a good reason, and you’re sure who you’re giving it to.
    • If you are a victim of ID theft, consider getting an Identity Protection Pin (IP PIN). This is a six-digit number, which, in addition to your Social Security number, confirms your identity. Once you apply, you must provide the IP Pin each year when you file your federal tax returns. Visit for more information.

    For More Information

    If you are the victim of tax identity in the U.S., contact the IRS at 1-800-908-4490 and consider filing a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at or by calling 1-877-FTC-HELP. The FTC also offers a personalized identity theft recovery plan at

    If you’re targeted by this scam or other scams, help others avoid the same problem by reporting your experience to  You can also call BBB of the Upstate office that covers all ten counties in the Upstate at 864.242.5052 or email to discuss the scam situation and be sure to ask before instead of after becoming a victim.

    By International Association of Better Business Bureaus

    Submitted to Ten at the Top by Vee Daniel, BBB of the Upstate President/CEO 

    TATT Chat Recap – January 21, 2021

    TATT Chat Recap – January 21, 2021

    Ten at the Top Update, Dean Hybl

    Year in Review 2020 released – thank you to our partners for their continued support!

    Next week is Sneak Pique, Wednesday, January 27 from 10:00am-11:00am, featuring training and recruitment specialists from Scansource presenting Networking in a Digital Age. Register here.

    February 3 from 3:00pm-4:00pm is the Upstate Entrepreneur Ecosystem Workshop on the Second Draw of PPP with Kunal Parikh, Policy Advisor from Senator Tim Scott’s office, and Earl Gregorich of the Greenville Area Small Business Development Center. Register here.

    February 24 from 10:00am-11:00am is the Upstate Professional Planners Group Workshop with the Upstate Mobility Alliance and Greenlink, an interactive model exercise for the Freedom Mobility program. Register here.

    Upstate Mobility Alliance, Michael Hildebrand

      • Kicking off quarterly series focused on the connection between transportation and community vibrancy
      • In February 23 meeting with city managers from the Golden Strip, Mauldin, Simpsonville and Fountain Inn, and county administrator for Laurens County, and how they see communities growing and in the next 20 years and the role transportation plays
      • Next up Jody Bryson with ITIC for podcast series

    Spartanburg, Cherokee, Union Counties – readySC, LaTokia Trigg

      • Latokia is the Representative Area Director for the Spartanburg Community College service area
      • readySC is part of the SC Technical College system that assists new and expanding industry with recruitment and training
      • There are currently projects open in Spartanburg and Cherokee Counties
      • All projects have adjusted to COVID-19 including AIRYSS Technologies, one posting available at
      • Following CDC guidelines for training, some in-person trainings

    Greenwood County – Barbara Ann Heegan, Greenwood Chamber of Commerce

      • Conducting survey and listening tour of members and non-members to gauge how businesses are doing, results next week
      • Economic Development initiative, Greenwood Together, to advance economic and community development that will enhance the quality of life in Greenwood County, partnering with industry recruitment retention efforts of county, Discover Greenwood and the Uptown Development Corporation to market assets across all sectors
      • Public transportation work ongoing with county

    View the presentation here.

    View a video recap here.