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Operations Consultant

 

Harry Chambers, Jr., MBA

 

Harry enjoys helping other business owners create a better life for themselves and their children. He is dedicated to encouraging business owners to use their gifts, develop mutually beneficial relationships, and mentor the next generation to improve communities. He provides financial expertise, tools, and planning strategies that allow clients to choose how to scale their businesses.

“My paternal grandparents (Walter and Lucy Chambers) were Alabama farmers from 1890 to 1970 (for 80 years) and raised 15 children in the town of Greensboro, Alabama in Hale County. My maternal grandparents (Robert/Tomp and Ella/Morn Hunt) were Alabama farmers and barbers from 1930 to 1980 (for 50 years) and raised 11 children in the same town. They had few material posessions but sustained their families from the resources they planted and harvested on their farms.  

My parents (Harry and Bessie Chambers) worked on their parents’ farms many years before they started our family (6 children) in Birmingham, Alabama.  My parents moved our family into a public housing project (Loveman’s Village) but eventually purchased a home in the West End community of Birmingham, Alabama. They both had a strong work ethic as a result of working on their parents’ farms but wanted their six children to graduate from high school.  

I spent many joyful days and nights on my grandparents’ farms during our summer breaks and Christmas hoidays.  I did not fully appreciate how their ownership of the farms would influence my journey.  I hated having to work on the farm, because it was hard. I thought I should’ve been enjoying my school breaks instead.  I’ve realized how wrong and selfish I was.  

I believe my exposure to our family’s farms and experiencing our families working together is ingrained my DNA.  As dysfunctional as large families can be, I saw our families working together and owning the land that produced food and work for the family. My family honored and supported family, friends and our community.  Many years would pass before one of the farms was sold, but the other farm remains in our family.  This business ownership legacy I inherited is the basis for how I use my God given gifts to champion, celebrate and encourage business owners.  I am keenly aware of the impact business owners have on their family, friends and community, as well as the lack of resources unavailable to many of them.

I graduated from Arthur Harold Parker High School in 1974 with a 2.5 grade point average but also considered the possibility of going to college after witnessing my older brother (Jesse) being awarded a four-year track scholarship to attend Alabama State University. My family had no money to send their six children to college, but the Basic Education Opportunity Grant (BEOG) made it possible for me to go.  I decided to enroll as a freshman at Alabama State University and, in December of 1979, completed the requirements for graduation with a 3.1 grade point average. I also received job offers from the U.S. General Accounting Office and Bank of America.  I accepted the job offer from Bank of America in San Francisco, California to be an international auditor.  

My experiences auditing, traveling, observing business owners and embracing the cultures in the seven countries where I worked are discussed in detail in my book entitled More Than Qualified: Responding To the Trails, Troubles, & Triumphs of African-American Business Ownership.   

My wife (Linda) and I started our businesses after working in corporate America, academia, and the government, to offer business owners the skill sets, operational improvement tools and planning strategies that would allow them to choose how they would scale their business.  My unusual journey is common for business owners who desire to create a better life for themselves and their children, use their gifts to encourage others, support  and develop mutually beneficial relationships, mentor the next generation, and leave the community better than the way they found them.  I encourage all business owners that they,  too, can pursue these same things.”

Harry holds an MBA from Samford University and a B.S. in Business Administration from Alabama State University. He brings over 30 years of experience in management and accounting, which includes Co-founder of Chambers Consulting, LTD, Osborne Enterprises, Inc., and Better Business Better Communities Research, Inc.; International Auditor with Bank of America in California, England, Belgium, Switzerland, Italy, Cyprus, and Pakistan; Operations Officer with AmSouth Bank (now Regions); and Tax Auditor with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

 
 
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Operations Consultant

 

Linda G. Chambers, PhD

 

Linda's journey to helping business owners succeed began while taking a business record-keeping course in high school. She loves advising and teaching clients how to budget and manage daily business expenses. She provides accounting expertise, tools, and planning strategies to help clients avoid losing revenue due to poor operational decision-making. 

“The plan to start a business came so quickly one day while my husband (Harry) and I were eating sandwiches in the park under a big tree. However, the idea of business ownership was sparked much earlier for me. M dad owned a taxicab and worked as an independent driver for a taxicab company by paying a license to use the company’s name. In return, the taxicab company would dispatch a fair share of the daily calls to him. For some reason, my dad preferred to own his vehicle rather than be a driver of the company-owned cars.

As a child, my dad would come home after work each day ready to “count up”, as he would say. While my siblings and I watched TV, my dad and my mom retired to their bedroom to begin the nightly “count up” of my dad’s earnings from taxi driving. This nightly ritual involved my mom recording the cash in a spiral notebook after my dad stacked the bills and counted them along with the coins. My dad seemed gifted at counting in his head, because he could do it quickly and never seemed to make a mistake in his calculations. He would have to wait for my mom to use a calculator to finish computing everything. Knowing my dad had already finished the calculations in his head, my mom would often blurt out to him,  “If you’ve already counted in your head, why do I need to calculate it?” Needless to say, that was a question that I began to ponder and later decided to consider when choosing a profession. 

It wasn’t until I was in the eleventh grade taking a business record-keeping course that I learned how to calculate employee wages and record the payroll. This course was thrilling to me, because it offered an opportunity to learn how to help my parents “count up”. This is how my quest to help couples like my parents began. I keep a painting in my office of an old married couple sitting at their kitchen table counting money. It has served as a reminder of how important it was to my parents to count their earnings. 

Harry and I started our business, Chambers Consulting, LTD, in April 1987 in our home. Within two years, we moved the business to a rental space. Soon after that, we purchased a commercial building where we have operated now for 29  years offering accounting and tax services to small businesses. Our aim remains to help small business owners, but we’ve expanded into offering management consulting and strategic planning services to clients by forming a corporation (Osborne Enterprises, Inc.), now with extended leadership from our daughter (Hali). Through our corporation, Hali provides talent management services and Harry created a copyrighted business education program (Vendor Boot Camp©) where we train small business owners.” 

Linda holds a PhD in Accounting from Capella University, Master of Accounting degree from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Alabama State University. She brings over 30 years of experience in accounting and auditing, which includes Co-founder of Chambers Consulting, LTD, Osborne Enterprises, Inc., and Better Business Better Communities Research, Inc.; Instructor of Accounting and Director of Sponsored Programs at Miles College; Manager of Expense Planning at United Healthcare; Comptroller of the Bessemer City School System; Internal Auditor with Energen Corporation; and Associate National Bank Examiner with the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

 
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Operations Consultant

 

Hali A. Chambers, PhD

 

Hali is passionate about helping business leaders build organizations that give workers the opportunity to contribute in a meaningful way, because she knows when people have a sense of purpose they thrive! Her unique perspective as a second-generation business owner and business psychologist allows her to leverage psychology principles and business acumen to help employers attract and retain talent to achieve business growth and sustainability.

“I grew up watching my parents (Harry and Linda) juggle managing their accounting and tax business (Chambers Consulting, LTD) while raising 3 children. I remember being at the office one day after school and overhearing my dad consult with a client who was venting about not being able to get her employees to show up on time for work. Moments like these allowed me to see how clients trusted them enough to feel comfortable venting about their business issues and concerns. Observing my parents owning a business, providing jobs, and being a trusted resource in our community gave me a sense of pride in knowing I was afforded opportunities to travel the world and get a good education because of their hard work as business owners. That’s why I have a tremendous amount of respect for business owners like my parents who pursue their dreams and never give up.

My dad would always tell my two younger siblings (Alonso and Kayla) and I that the business would one day be ours. Even though we would respond to my dad with a joke about turning the business into a parking lot, I took his words seriously. I didn’t want to let him and my mom down but had no idea I would one day write a dissertation about small business survival and later join my parents in the business. 

I always knew I wanted to be a business owner. I even pursued it a few times growing up. For example, my siblings and I ran a lemonade stand in our front yard once during our summer break after being persuaded by my mom to go find something to do to beat our boredom. Also, while in high school and college, my friends would also pay me to style their hair after learning I enjoyed it and was pretty good at it. However, it wasn’t until my senior year in college that I considered the idea of following in my parents footsteps. I was a psychology major planning to pursue a career in clinical psychology but quickly changed my mind while learning about industrial-organizational psychology during a class lecture on the history of psychology. I discovered I could still satisfy my desire to understand human behavior and help people solve their problems as a psychologist but also satisfy my desire to help my parents and those like them who want to build a company that will last for generations.”

Hali holds a PhD in Business Psychology and master’s degree in Industrial-Organizational Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, as well as a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Tuskegee University. She brings a wealth of experience serving the talent management needs of business and nonprofit organizations, including ComPsych Corporation, Chicago Transit Authority, YMCA of Metro Chicago, and BTS USA, Inc. Her teaching experience includes Adjunct Instructor of Applied Research Projects at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology and Associate Professor of Psychology at Alabama State University.

 
Contact Us
 
 

Birmingham, Alabama USA | (205) 780-7903

 
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