From the Director

May 2020

Things have certainly changed in the last few weeks and months including the daily tasks we have here at the Chamber. I found myself asking the question how does the Chamber continue to uphold its position as “The Voice for Business and Community”, especially in a world where business is closed and the community is sheltered in place. My colleagues from Chambers around the area were all asking important questions and seeking answers for their investors. I have often made the statement when asked, “What does the Chamber provide its investors?” “We are a resource for information and a business network.” It is a simple answer with many facets. It branches into the complex world of marketing and advertising, government regulations, employee relations, economic development and sustainability. I could take the space in this entire newsletter and still not fully explain the network of people and their partnerships with our organization. They are today even more important as we face uncharted territory in an uncertain marketplace.

It is rare that we have the opportunity to hit the pause button in our daily lives. We can either look at it as a problem or an opportunity. I will take the latter. I am not downplaying the economic devastation this has placed on our business community. I do think it will change our focus as we reopen our world.

The world of business has been changed.  I think the focus will shift back to the local community and how it can be rejuvenated and sustained. Now more than ever the slogan “Shop and buy local” carries the weight of support for communities like ours across the state and our nation. Your customers are moving to a more socially distanced way of buying, which brings to mind the one universal question, “What’s next?”

The digital realm will now be an even greater factor in how we conduct business. You should consider how to prepare your business to make it easier for your customers to buy your products, communicate with you, and see your advertising and promotions on-line. Think outside the box. How can I make it better for customers to access goods and services from my business from their phone, their laptop, or tablet?

Will you be ready? The Chamber and its community partners are here and ready to tackle the task.

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