Member Spotlight

We sat down with Martin Plumlee, Owner and CEO, of Plumlee & Associates to see why he decided to start his own business and how it has grown drastically since its start in 2012!


Tell us a little about yourself.

I am a native of Middle Tennessee; love being a native son of this area!

So blessed to have been married to Amy for almost 8 years. We have two wonderful kids: Emma Grace, 1st Grader at Clovercroft Elementary & Elijah – pre-school at the Academy of McKay’s Mill. I consider myself extremely fortunate to have become an entrepreneur in 2012; of course, my wife is very gracious to support these efforts. I try hard to never take that for granted! The bottom line: I am working harder and having more fun than at any time of my business career which began almost 20 years ago. Every day is an adventure.

Also, another important part of my life is service to this country. I am in the Army Reserves; my current unit is based in Des Moines, Iowa.

Where did you grow up?
All over the Greater Nashville area. I was born at Baptist Hospital (now St Thomas Midtown). Growing up, I lived in Forest Hills, Brentwood, Hermitage, West Meade and finally Bellevue. Following high school graduation, I departed to New York for college.

How long have you lived in the area?

For over 30 years, across a total of three stints. I moved back to Franklin in 2009; hard to believe it has been that long! A decade can pass so quickly.

What is Plumlee & Associates?

Plumlee & Associates is a veteran-owned small business that has grown quickly since opening in 2012. We are a high-quality, integrity-first Executive Search firm, with an affiliated practice serving military veterans. We partner with our external customers: clients and candidates, finding ideal matches for each stakeholder. Our industry expertise is in financial services, manufacturing, distribution and hospitality.

At the functional level, we place the very best talent in: Finance, Accounting, Sales, Marketing and Supply Chain. In summary, our team members are successful, experienced business partners that understand complex challenges around a company’s most unique and valuable assets – its’ people!

Where did the idea come from and why did you decide to get into this business?

The reality: I lost my job twice in only 12 months. The first was a corporate acquisition; the next one was a Chapter 11 bankruptcy. At the tender age of 40, I decided it was time to walk professionally more in faith, work hard and build a business based on quality, integrity, and team work. Having been a successful professional recruiter for almost 9 years gave me the confidence and the experience base to launch this endeavor. Of course, very humbled to have the support of my family, especially my bride.

Tell us about the events that led up to where your company is now.

Where do we start? We have a great set of clients; many are Tennessee based firms. Others are spread across the United States. For instance, we have done business in great states like Washington, California, Colorado, Arizona, Missouri, Georgia, Kentucky, Florida, Pennsylvania and New York.

In early 2015, we partnered with a hyper-growth client in Brentwood with multiple openings around the country. Most of these roles had been open for six to nine months. We ask for down payments (retainers) to prioritize and fill these critical revenue generations positions. In short, we filled all of these positions within 60 days. We call this service offering engaged search. It has been a phenomenal success for our firm; it is our most popular delivery model.

Over the years, we have perfected “the triangle approach” to search. Our service model believes that close collaboration, hard work and a relentless quality emphasis delivers the “right results” for our client companies,
job candidates and our internal recruiting team. A classic win-win-win!

What is unique about your business (what sets you apart from the rest)?

Great question; not any one thing sets us apart in a very competitive industry.

But when you put the following together, we are unique – which happens to be one of our company values.

  1. We are a Certified Veteran Owned Small Business (VOSB) from the Department of Veterans Affairs
  2. We will never be owned by another investor or larger firm; we are building a sustainable firm that my kids can excel in for decades to come!
  3. We are committed to working with companies and veterans to assist both sides with mutually beneficial success
  4. We go above and beyond to deliver exceptional service to clients that pay our “success fees” along with our talented mid-career and/or executive candidates.
  5. We live out the principles and values advocated by the National Association of Personnel Services (NAPS), as well as a document we call our Candidate Success Covenant.

Why did you choose Williamson County to open your business?

  1. Again, a few reasons!
    1. Franklin is our home; in fact, my wife and I moved here from Nashville in 2012. Of course, the great school system made it an easy decision. Amy and I both come from families that value education so this made so much sense.
  2. Williamson County is so business friendly; the special mix of great people, endless passion and creative energy makes it such a smart location to operate and expand a business.
  3. The momentum of this market. When I left Active Duty in 1999, I worked in Cool Springs for almost three years. Moving back here in 2009 was an easy decision; the sustained success of this area is special. It is fun to be here in Williamson County; our plan is to be rooted in this community for a long time!

In your own words, why is it great to do business in Williamson County, TN?

A few thoughts come to mind:

  • professionalism of the business community
  • openness at the individual level to assist and help you progress
  • a humble, can-do spirit across business, government and small business.

How has being a part of the overall business community in Williamson County helped you?

About 35% of our client revenue is based in Williamson County; we are very fortunate to have a strong client base in our backyard. We believe that being active and present in key activities at the Chamber benefits our business. Of course, we can do more; as we continue to add staff to our team, you will see more of the Plumlee & Associates team!

One particular thing helped raise our firm’s profile. I was fortunate to join the Williamson, Inc Denver Study Mission trip in Fall 2017; this trip further confirmed the dynamic leadership and bright future for businesses, families and individuals in Williamson County.

Why did you choose to become a Williamson, Inc. Member?

There was no debate – it was a no-brainer! In my opinion, it is such a strong value for the price of membership.

Given your business expertise and the nature of what you do, what advice (general or specific) can you offer to the readers?

  1. Find (or continue to do) what you love; with passion, you can do anything!
  2. Pay it forward; help someone today and it will come back around to you in the future.
  3. Be willing to pay the price! If you really want to earn that promotion or make your local neighborhood better, sacrifice your time, effort and talents: you will get it done!
  4. If you are a networker, that is fantastic. When you ready to become a connector, then you can mentor networkers in the local community! Amazing to me that some people enjoy this practice while others would prefer to hang out at the DMV for hours… 😊

How can readers take advantage of your products and services?

Call us today! We love to speak and meet with client prospects, as well as sit down in person with talented candidates that want to accelerate their career, increase their income and/or improve their overall quality of life.

Business contact information (phone, address, website, email, etc.):
Phone: 615.777.8526
Address: 3401 Mallory Lane, Suite 219, Franklin TN 37067
Email: |
Twitter: @Plumlee_Assoc

To learn more about Martin, be sure to read his bio here!