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Check Out Tameka McKneely’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tameka McKneely.

Hi Tameka, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
I am a multi-passionate entrepreneur who grew up in a household where there was always a family side business, whether it was a security company, a lawn service, commercial cleaning service, etc. and by family, I mean my father had businesses and my brothers and I were the employees. We grew up cleaning commercial buildings in the evening, doing commercial lawn care on the weekend and security for special events around the city, amongst other side jobs. Where there was a need, my dad came up with a way to make it a business. So entrepreneurship was ingrained in my brothers and I at an early age. And through it all, my dad always kept a full-time job.

Fast forward to adulthood, I found a love for crafting and because of my upbringing, my first thought was how can I use my newfound love to make extra money. I did just that, and there was born ‘Got2bcre8tv’. ‘Got2bcre8tv’ dba A-Scential Therapies was the first business I started in 2001, making and selling bath products and gift baskets. Since then, my business has evolved into all things crafty. If someone asks me I can make a particular item, I may respond, I have not in the past but let me look into it. Nine times out of ten, I will take on the job. I always let customers know if they are my first attempt at a new craft. I have yet to have a dissatisfied customer. I have never been one to back down from a challenge. I once had a coworker request a gift for a friend, a customized chair featuring their favorite artist, Tina Turner. I accepted the challenge and although I had painted furniture before I had never reupholstered furniture. he knew this but assured me he had faith in me. But there was a catch, he needed the chair in five days.

Needless to say, I found the perfect chair, and in 5 days the chair was complete even with the learning curve. He was very satisfied with the finished product and encouraged me to add custom chairs to my repertoire. ‘Got2bcre8tv’ is my first baby and will always be my first love. This year I decided to expand the vision of ‘Got2bcre8tv’ to an idea I had back in 2001 to provide a space for creative souls. This past September I launched ‘Got2bcre8tv Marketplace’. An Online Marketplace for Black Cre8tvs. The Marketplace is open to any Black Owned Business that cre8tes products, crafters, artist, authors media, etc. to register as a vendor to sell their products or to list their business in our directory. THe marketplace is also open for patronage where visitors can shop for creative items. The idea came to me being a black creative, myself. I often felt lost in larger marketplaces. It was then I decided to create a space where Black Cre8tvs can be featured and showcased.

Recently, I have ventured into consulting following a layoff in 2019. After being laid off twice in two years, I decided I did not like Corporate America holding my career fate in their hands.

Following the second layoff, I decided to focus my expertise on independent consulting. And from that decision came ‘4zero Consulting, LLC’, specializing in Corporate Contract Compliance Consulting with a focus on vulnerable populations, i.e. Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, IDD, and other government programs. I serve as a Compliance Alignment Consultant, assisting Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) identify gaps between their current operations and their regulatory contracts allowing them to correct those gaps before they are idenitied by regulators and fines, sanctions or Corrective Action Plans are assessed. I have worked in the Health Insurance industry for the past 20 years. In that time, I have seen and attempted to correct gaps in processes and operations, from the entry-level to the executive level of Healthcare. After working in Compliance for the last ten years of my corporate career, I was able to see an overarching and overwhelming number of gaps in processes in every area and department of health insurance. And without the constraints of corporate politics, I began to devise plans on how to correct those gaps that would be beneficial to Healthcare Companies. The main gap found is that staff is unable to read and understand the Regulatory Contracts they are bound by.

I developed a database that makes a contract easy to read and understand by anyone with or without a contract or legal background. If the staff understands what is expected of them, they are more likely to avoid missteps and missteps cost, literally. This database can save any company millions of dollars and at the end of the day, that is the bottom line in Corporate America. The database is customizable for each and any contract. For me, the bottom line is more for the clients or those receiving the benefits. If there are fewer missteps, the clients receive the best service their policy can offer. There are several guidelines Healthcare Companies/Managed Care Organizations have to follow to remain compliant and provide coverage to clients. I help them remain compliant and save millions of dollars to provide the best outcome for those they serve.

As I mentioned, I am multi-passionate. I provide as a service under Tameka McKneely, LLC Motivation by GLUE (I bring people together, or so I have been told) Daily Motivation- via social media as well as speaking engagements

Purpose Cultivating- Helping clients use their Passion to determine their Purpose and turn that into a Business

Business Consulting- I offer consultations on an individual base as well as Courses on Business Set Up for adults as well as aspiring teen entrepreneurs (Name your Business for Success, Business Formation, obtaining an EIN, applying for Sale and Use Tax Permit, Obtaining Business Credit and how it is monitored, Business email, Business Website, Information about Business Bank Accounts, Payment Gateways, Tools for Business Income Tax Filing and Income Streams (that work for any business). More courses to come.

In addition to the businesses above, my AMAZING husband and I own BluIvory Investments, LLC. We specialize in Real Estate Investing, providing housing for low-income families. I call him AMAZING because I do not know many spouses that would allow their partner to become a full-time entrepreneur after the shock of an unexpected layoff. He is GREAT and I am blessed to walk this journey called life with him.

Due to my entrepreneurial upbringing, I have been blessed with the confidence it takes to succeed as an entrepreneur. The future is looking very bright. When I leave this earth, I want to be on “E” (empty). Knowing that I have given all I had. I left no idea, unexplored and I shared what I knew with the next generation and those around me. The graveyard is full of inventions, ideas, things that could have changed the world if only carried out. I don’t want anyone to say she had so much-untapped potential. I am tapping in.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
My journey has been as pretty smooth. One thing has been a challenge, in a way, is that once I was not bound by autopilot mode of Corporate America, my mind opened up to so many business ideas and avenues. Being able to see business in everything. That can be a challenge because it can be overwhelming when you have so many ideas filtering through what you should explore and what you should be set aside or passed on to someone better suited to pursue.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I enjoy being analytical just as much as I enjoy being creative. I like to say if my right and left brain were hands, I would be ambidextrous. I do not lean more to either side as most do. I am most known for my personable persona. I am known by the name GLUE by many because I tend to bring people together and things together, or so I have been told. I can interact with anyone and everyone. I understand that people are in different places in their life and I am in no position to judge. I try to be what people need for their current situation. I am just a vessel to get them to their next step in life. I am not in a position to deny anyone that crosses my path. I don’t believe in coincidences, we are all here for a reason and we all need each other to make it.

I am a proud God-Girl and know that he uses me in ways I may not be used if I discounted those I come in contact with because they don’t run in my circle, believe what I believe or treat me as I treat them. I am proud that when people meet me they feel comfortable, they don’t feel judged and want to be around me. I think all these things set me apart from others. I am aware of my purpose for being on this Earth and it has nothing to do with me.

Are there any books, apps, podcasts or blogs that help you do your best?
I love Music and Quotes and I live my life by both. You will always catch me with music playing in the background and quotes hanging around my workspace. I am always quoting song lyrics when the situation warrants it, as well as quotes. I am also an avid reader, I love to read mainly fiction books in my free time. I have recently gotten into audiobooks which is how I get my non-fiction reading in these days.

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