Local Business News Briefs

Kroger will Celebrate Grand Re-Opening of Georgesville Square Store with Special Family Event on Wednesday, August 23

Remodeled store represents a $4.1 million investment in local community

Westerville – Kroger invites shoppers to the grand re-opening celebration for its Georgesville Square store, located at 1585 Georgesville Square Drive, on Wednesday, August 23, 4-6 p.m. Guests may register to win one of ten $100 Kroger gift cards, sample food and get a free immunization check-up in the pharmacy. The store will also offer face painting and balloon sculpting for children.

The remodeled 78,358-square-foot Kroger represents a $4.1 million investment in the Columbus community and brings new services such as a made-to-order pizza station, ClickList online grocery ordering, Boar’s Head deli meats, cheeses and condiments, and Starbucks. The store also offers a new wine and beer tasting bar and a selection of artisan bread.

“Customers will enjoy the store’s new amenities and more convenient layout,” said Sara Rupert, Georgesville Square Kroger store leader. “Our 193 associates look forward to providing customers the same level of quality service they came to expect in the past.”

The Georgesville Square Kroger is open daily from 6 a.m. to 1 a.m., with pharmacy hours 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.

For more information about the updated store or the grand re-opening celebration, call 614-878-1332.

About Kroger’s Columbus Division:

Since 1907, Kroger’s Columbus Division has been serving customers throughout central Ohio. Today, more than 21,000 associates assist customers in 121 supermarkets, 120 pharmacies and 90 fuel centers throughout central and northwest Ohio, as well as southeast Michigan and the Ohio River Valley region. The Columbus Division is home to Kroger’s Great Lakes Distribution Center, The Kroger Bakery, Tamarack Dairy and Kroger Pharmacy’s regional fulfillment center. Focusing its charitable efforts on hunger relief, supporting our nation’s military, breast cancer awareness and local school and education programs, the division donated $4 million in 2016 to more than 4500 local non-profits through the division’s Kroger Community Rewards program. Since 2010, the division has donated more than $2 million to Feeding America food banks throughout the region. Committed to environmental sustainability, currently all division stores participate in organics recycling and 20 stores have earned Energy Star certification through the EPA for reducing energy consumption.

Allied Universal Hosts Hiring Events for Professional Security Officers in Madison County

Allied Universal, a leading facility services company and the largest security force in North America with over 150,000 employees, will host two professional security personnel hiring events in Madison County, Ohio in August to hire security professionals, including account managers, supervisors and dispatchers. We invite Delaware Gazette to report on these hiring events.

* The West Jefferson hiring event will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 24 at the Hunt/Battelle West Jefferson Central Library at 270 Lilly Chapel Road, West Jefferson, Ohio.

* The Madison County Ohio Means Jobs hiring event will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 31 at 200 Midway Street, London, Ohio.

Qualified candidates must meet the following minimum requirements:

* High school diploma or equivalency

* Be at least 18 years old (21 years old for positions that require driving)

* Successfully complete a pre-employment background investigation and pre-employment drug/alcohol test

* Display exceptional customer service and communication skills

* Possess intermediate computer skills to utilize innovative, wireless technology at client sites

Company benefits include medical and dental coverage, life insurance, 401(k) and bonus plans, holidays and more. Allied Universal is an equal opportunity employer committed to hiring a diverse workforce.

View additional details at: http://bit.ly/2vPkzVD and http://bit.ly/2wnqjIf.

Learn more about Allied Universal career opportunities at www.AUS.com/careers, on Twitter at @AU_Careers and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AlliedUniversal.

About Allied Universal

Allied Universal, a leading facility services company and the largest security force in North America with over 150,000 employees, provides unparalleled security services and solutions. With headquarters in Santa Ana, Calif., and Conshohocken, Pa., Allied Universal combines people and technology to deliver evolving, tailored solutions that allow our clients to focus on their core business. An unrelenting focus on clients’ success creates partnerships rooted in quality and value, and is supported by experience gained from being in business for over 50 years. Through our people and leading services, systems and solutions…Allied Universal is there for you. For more information, please visit www.AUS.com.

Columbus 2020 and the Rise of Smaller Smart Cities

Forget New York and Los Angeles—it’s really the small to midsize metro areas like Columbus, Ohio, that are successfully implementing smart-city programs.

Carlos Gonzalez | Aug 12, 2017

Machine Design

Smart-city programs are popping up all over the United States. As we economize the Internet of Things and technology becomes more affordable, cities are taking advantage of the tech boom and looking to instill new programs in their infrastructure. While much of the focus may go to major cities like New York or Los Angeles, medium-sized to smaller cities are actually leading the charge.

A recent survey by the U.S. Conference of Mayors and the analytics firm IHS Markit revealed that 30% of existing smart-city projects are occurring in small cities with residents of 150,000 or less. The survey concluded that smaller and medium-sized cities may have an easier time implementing new technology. These cities may be more motivated to attract interested companies to be their test beds to bringing investment capital and encourage job growth.

One such city is Columbus, Ohio, which was recognized as the Intelligent Community of the Year by the Intelligent Community Foundation. Columbus is the 14th largest city in the U.S. and through public and private sector partnerships, Columbus 2020 was launched to serve “as the economic development organization for the 11-county Columbus Region, working in partnership with state and local partners to generate opportunity and build capacity for economic growth.” The goals which are to be met by the year 2020 are:

  • Add 150,000 net new jobs
  • Generate $8 billion of capital investment
  • Raise personal per capita income by 30%
  • Earn recognition as a leader in economic development

The services provided by Columbus 2020 for qualified companies identify programs available for investment and arrange meetings with leaders in the public sector, private sector, academia, and local economic development organizations. The organization also helps with market research, which includes demographic information, workforce analysis and customized data, acquiring land or property for research, and help foreign and domestic companies to increase exports.

The Columbus region is home to a labor force of more than 1 million workers and 33% of those workers are graduates with bachelor’s degrees. There are 59 colleges and universities in the Columbus region and in particular, Ohio State University is a main location for innovating applied research for product design, technology commerce, and manufacturing. Its program, the Center for Design and Manufacturing Excellence, works directly with manufacturers to identify and execute growth strategies.

The car above is testing smart mobility protocols at Transportation Research Center Inc. (TRC), the largest independent test facility and proving grounds in North America.

Below are some of the smart city developments that have occurred in the Columbus region through public and private sector partnerships.

Smart City Challenge Winner: In June 2016, Columbus beat out 77 other cities to win the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (D.O.T.) $40 million Smart City Challenge. The city was awarded $10 million from Vulcan in addition to the funding from the Dept. of Transportation. There was also an additional $500 million pledged by a partnership of public and private entities in the Columbus region, giving the city a total of $550 million to implement its initiatives. The city’s plan is to create an all-inclusive approach using technology to the benefit of all residents, focusing on five major areas: access to jobs, connected visitors, smart logistics, connected citizens, and sustainable transportation.

Infrastructure Investments: The Columbus region was also awarded $175 million from American Electric Power, $124 million from Honda Motor Co. to build an advanced wind tunnel at the Transportation Research Center in East Liberty, and $15 million from the state of Ohio to develop a Smart Mobility Corridor along US Route 33 between Dublin and East Liberty.

Ongoing Smart Mobility Efforts: In June, Wind River, an Intel subsidiary, announced that it will partner with the Ohio State University, the Transportation Research Center (TRC), the largest independent test facility and proving grounds in North America, and the city of Dublin, Ohio, where high-speed connectivity is available for its businesses through 125 miles of underground fiber optics, to “advance safe and secure technologies for self-driving and connected vehicle technology.” The partnership is just the latest in a series of efforts being made by the Columbus region to further smart mobility efforts. In August 2017, construction began on US 33 to turn a 35-mile stretch into a “Smart Mobility Corridor,” which will serve as the testing grounds for autonomous and connected vehicles. Underground installation on the 35 miles of high-capacity fiber optic cable is expected to be completed this year. In addition, this year, the TRC received a $45 million grant for new 540-acre SMART (Smart Mobility Advanced Research and Test) Center on the TRC’s campus. Plans for the first phase will set new industry standards, with plans for a 12-lane intersection (the industry’s largest), and a large and flexible test platform (which will be wider than more than 50 highway lanes and the length of 10 football fields), and a range of networks that reflect different environments, including urban, rural and neighborhood networks.

Strong Ties to the Auto Industry: The Columbus region is home to a robust automotive manufacturing industry, producing 700,000 cars annually. Taking advantage of the TRC, Ohio State’s Center for Automotive Research and College of Engineering, automakers operating in the region benefit from a highly educated workforce of nearly 18,000 working in the automotive industry—nearly four times greater than the U.S. average—and the region’s strategic location within a 10-hour drive to the majority of the U.S. population. The Region is also home to the bulk of Honda’s North American operations; more than one-third of Honda’s North American light vehicle production comes from the Columbus Region. In addition to Honda, the Region boasts a network of suppliers, from G-Tekt to Stanley Electric.

According to Kenny McDonald, certified economic developer and president and chief economic officer of Columbus 2020 since its inception in 2010, the midsize cities are the perfect mix for the development of smart cities. “Metro areas between like one and three million people are big enough to have scale and access to the supply chains of several companies—from Fortune 500 companies and smaller companies—but they are also small enough to where the people know each other at every level and have to work together and be dedicated to accomplish tasks. Organizations like ours are in the middle of it tying all the resources together, from the public sector to the private sector and even to the academic sector together,” says McDonald.

The shape and size of small and mid-size cities make great test beds for smart programs because they are large enough to have the resources but contained enough to be a perfect controlled environment. Hopefully, the success of smaller smart cities can eventually be applied to larger areas and the country. As McDonald notes, “We think of us as this goldilocks theory. You need to be big enough to be able to scale up and small enough that you can actually get something done. We believe in the power of cities and metro areas, and we think that a lot of the responsibility falls upon on us as economic developers to try a build a coalition of smart cities.”

5 Relationship Skills That Help Enlightened Business Leaders Thrive

We may be well into an age of enlightenment in the world of business leadership, with leaders focusing on relationships and team building rather than issuing edicts from the corner office.

“Enlightened business leaders are emerging as a force for growth in an increasingly competitive business world,” says Sallie J. Sherman, co-author of Five Keys to Powerful Business Relationships and founder and CEO of S4 Consulting (www.S4consulting.com).

But just what are some of the traits that make a leader enlightened? Sherman says they include curiosity, inventiveness, diversity of thought and a focus on collaborative relationships designed to produce win-win situations.

Sherman’s firm helps businesses deepen and strengthen their relationships with other businesses – as well as improve the relationships within a business itself as a means to create a competitive strategic advantage.

Powerful relationships can bring out the best in all parties, she says, and enlightened leaders are especially good at building those relationships.

“When people hear the word ‘power’ they think of control, domination and win/lose situations,” Sherman says. “When it comes to business relationships, that’s not what we mean by power at all. We’re talking about collaboration and co-creating value.”

Powerful business relationships, she says, are built on influence rather than control, and on openness instead of suppression. The ability to master those relationship skills is what helps turn leaders into enlightened leaders.

Some of the principles that go into developing those relationship skills include:

Being able to connect. When it comes to work, many people want to get right down to business and don’t have time for what they view as small talk. But actually, Sherman says, making a connection with the other person is the lifeblood of business. “It’s not about manipulation or just exchanging pleasantries for the sake of it,” she says. “It’s about making a genuine effort to find a way to relate and share a common ground before moving straight to accomplishing the task at hand.”

Showing empathy. Being able to empathize with others can help in several ways. You can adapt your problem-solving approach to get the best results for everyone; people will find you easier to work with; and you can better anticipate possible problems. “You also will increase your ability to influence others because you’ll learn over time what works and what doesn’t in your relationships,” Sherman says.

Being able to develop trust. Trust in business relationships is important because it allows all parties to feel safe, empowered and capable; reduces miscommunication and friction; eases the problem solving; and requires less upkeep in maintaining the business relationship.

Showing a willingness to share information. Hoarding information can create major crimps in productivity and negatively affect relationships, Sherman says. “It’s important to emphasize to everyone in the organization that sharing is critical for the firm’s thriving, and to improving the firm’s overall performance,” she says.

Learning to manage yourself before you manage others. “The most important relationship in business is the one we have with ourselves,” Sherman says. When business leaders examine their own strengths and weaknesses objectively, they are able to identify opportunities that can improve their relationships with others.

“Too often, these relationship skills have been seen as ‘soft’ rather than drivers of economic value,” Sherman says. “But businesspeople who work at becoming more authentic and more skillful relationship builders are often the ones who get promoted and succeed in reaching their goals.”

About Sallie J. Sherman, Ph.D.

Sallie J. Sherman, co-author of Five Keys to Powerful Business Relationships and The Seven Keys to Managing Strategic Accounts, is founder and CEO of S4 Consulting (www.S4consulting.com). Sherman is an expert in helping businesses grow by transforming their business-to-business relationships into strategic assets. Since 1986, she has focused on auditing clients’ key relationships – both internally and externally – and then using that information to collaboratively help companies design and execute relationship management strategies that create a sustainable, competitive advantage.

Noisy Neighbor Syndrome (NNS)—the extreme annoyance neighbors feel when Airbnb guests are too loud.

Consider this sobering statistic:

The #1 cause of concern among Airbnb hosts and their neighbors is excessive noise—a preventable issue that’s causing major headaches in Columbus. Studies have shown that noise annoyance from neighbors can cause serious health risks.

NoiseAware [www.noiseaware.io]—a startup being hailed as the “smoke detector for noise”—is launching in Columbus to make neighborhoods friendlier, healthier, quieter places for everyone.

Here’s how NoiseAware is making Columbus a better, healthier place to live (and visit):


If things get too noisy, it’s usually up to the annoyed neighbor to either contact the homeowner or the police. With NoiseAware, the owner gets real-time noise alerts, keeping neighbors from acting as noise police, or getting the actual police involved.


Noise complaints between neighbors are often a case of he said-she said. With NoiseAware’s Noise Risk Score, which takes into account decibels, noise levels, duration, and other factors, the data tells the story with context and deep insights.


Being a good neighbor doesn’t have to mean being Big Brother. NoiseAware’s technology measures loudness without making recordings. It takes pressure readings and does not—and cannot—record any sound or speech, so being a good neighbor doesn’t have to mean violating privacy.

Columbus Airbnb hosts and neighbors can check out NoiseAware here:


Meijer Launches Fall Simply Give Campaign

Program generated nearly $32 million since 2008 for food pantries across the Midwest

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – On the heels of its record-setting spring efforts, the Meijer fall Simply Give campaign will kick off Sunday to help stock the shelves of its food pantry partners throughout the Midwest.

“Participation in our Simply Give program continues to grow, thanks to the generosity of our customers and dedicated food pantry partners,” said Cathy Cooper, Senior Director of Community Partnerships and Giving. “We are committed to helping end the problem of food insecurity in the Midwest.”

The fall campaign will kick off Aug. 20 and run through Sept. 16, helping restock the shelves of food pantries that were heavily utilized during the summer months.

In addition, on Sept. 1-2, Meijer will double match customers’ donations up to $25,000 per pantry. That means for every $10 donation card purchased, Meijer will contribute $20, resulting in a total $30 donation.

How it works:

During each Simply Give campaign, customers are encouraged to purchase a $10 Simply Give donation card upon checkout. Once purchased, the donation is converted into a Meijer Food-Only Gift Card and donated directly to the local food pantry selected by the store for that campaign.

Simply Give donation cards can be purchased at all 235 Meijer stores and will benefit a local food pantry.

Since Meijer began its Simply Give program in 2008, nearly $32 million – or 352 million meals – has been donated to help neighborhood food pantries keep their shelves stocked throughout the year. According to Feeding America, $1 equals 11 meals.

The program runs three times a year when food pantries need it the most: spring, fall and holiday.

“Hunger is a problem that occurs in all of our communities, which is why the funds generated from Simply Give stay local,” Cooper said. “The Simply Give program gives everyone a chance to work toward ensuring no one has to go without food.”

About Meijer: Meijer is a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based retailer that operates more than 230 supercenters and grocery stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Wisconsin. A privately-owned and family-operated company since 1934, Meijer has a fundamental philosophy aimed at strengthening the communities it serves and proudly donates more than 6 percent of its net profit each year to charities throughout the Midwest. With hunger as a corporate philanthropic focus, Meijer partners with hundreds of food banks and pantries through its Simply Give and food rescue programs. Meijer also supports education, disaster relief, and health and wellness initiatives. For additional information on Meijer philanthropy, please visit www.meijercommunity.com. Follow Meijer on Twitter @twitter.com/Meijer and @twitter.com/MeijerPR or become a fan at www.facebook.com/meijer.

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Staff Reports

In case you haven’t heard…

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