Partners in Business Group Provides Avenue for Networking

Kootenai County employers interested in learning more about networking and best practices for businesses might find the Partners in Business group worth a look.

The professional networking group was started more than 20 years ago with the purpose of creating mutually beneficial business relationships. The meetings are designed to inform, inspire and educate the business community by tapping area leaders and experts as speakers for the monthly meeting.

Stacey Hanlon, Idaho Department of Labor workforce consultant, introduces Rep. Luke Malek at the November Partners in Business meeting.  Malek discussed the state's health insurance exchange.

Stacey Hanlon, Idaho Department of Labor workforce consultant, introduces Rep. Luke Malek at the November Partners in Business meeting. Malek discussed the state’s health insurance exchange.

“It’s an inexpensive way to learn how to grow and expand your business and to network with other businesses in your community,” said Ricia Lasso, Idaho Department of Labor’s regional business specialist and one of the group’s early coordinators.


Recent speakers included Jamie Lynn Morgan of Jamie Lynn Morgan Marketing discussing “Social Media – Why Your Business Needs It” and Bill Jhung of the Idaho Small Business Development Center discussing “5 Crucial Questions for Life and Business.”

Speakers for upcoming meetings are:

  • Dec. 4: Greg Cook, executive director of the Panhandle Area Council, presenting Fly Like an Eagle: Strategies to Increase Personal and Professional Effectiveness.
  • Jan. 8: Idaho Department of Labor Regional Economist Alivia Metts discussing North Idaho’s economy.

In addition, in an effort to expand awareness of the region’s growing, successful and most innovative entities, the group plans to tour four leading-edge businesses per year.

The Partners in Business group toured Ednetics in October.

The Partners in Business group toured Ednetics in October.

The group met in October at Ednetics for the group’s inaugural business tour. Shawn Swansby, Ednetics founder and president, guided the group through the headquarters in Post Falls. The company provides network-based solutions for the education community, including products such as phone, video conferencing and building access control.

Pam Houser, president of the Post Falls Chamber of Commerce, attended the tour. “It was great to have Shawn give the tour. … It’s (Ednetics) such a great addition to our business community.”

Typically between 20 and 30 professionals from healthcare, retail, non-profit agencies, manufacturing and financial services attend the lunch meetings.

To join Partners in Business, contact Stacey Hanlon at the Idaho Department of Labor at stacey.hanlon@labor.idaho.gov or (208) 457-8789 ext. 3947.