Editor’s Note: The News Journal is presenting daily stories on local entities that play vital roles in economic development during National Economic Development Week (May 6-11). Today’s story is from the Wilmington-Clinton County Chamber of Commerce.
Clinton County provides the ideal environment for businesses to start and grow.
For us, home is defined by the small-town values and quality of life that have shaped our community for generations. We are proud of our hard work ethic and spirit of self-reliance, as well as our commitment to community and to serving one another.
Yet, we are a small town with a global presence. Our community is home to global leaders in aerospace, logistics, health care, manufacturing, and technology leading farmers. We are also home to a vibrant community of entrepreneurs that define our unique small-town quality of life.
We are a community committed to working in partnership with our businesses to ensure that they are free from barriers and that they have the resources they need to thrive and grow.
What does the Wilmington-Clinton County Chamber of Commerce do to create and support this environment? We start by supporting the existing local business community.
Our Local First Clinton County campaign reaches out to over 7,000 individuals via email and Facebook, sharing information about the events, promotions, specials, and services offered by our members. Through this indirect communication, and through direct contact with individuals calling for referrals, the Chamber connects consumers with the businesses that can best meet their needs.
Businesses also call for referrals, which is one reason the Chamber will be launching a program later this year to encourage local businesses to interact with each other, providing them with the tools and knowledge to serve as ambassadors for others in the local business community.
It takes more than customers to make a strong business though, which is why the Chamber offers Weekly Briefing emails and Lunch & Learn programs on the latest developments and trends that impact business owners, their employees, and the local economy.
Chamber members also have access to discount programs for health/vision/dental care, human resources options, energy conservation, workers compensation, and other business costs, all of which lower their bottom line.
Ideally, a strong business is a growing business, which leads to the need for more employees. The Chamber’s jobs board, and the job openings email which goes out to over 4,000 individuals each month, connects employers with prospective hires year-round.
Recognizing that a growing business community cannot only rely on the existing labor pool, the Chamber maintains relationships with numerous education and workforce development organizations and councils throughout the region.
But good jobs with thriving businesses aren’t the only things that draw individuals to a community.
Business owners and community leaders know that quality of life is just as important in attracting new businesses and employees to a location, and the Chamber plays a role in that as well.
Non-profit Chamber membership allows organizations throughout the county the opportunity to promote their events and share information about their services through the Chamber’s business-to-business and business-to-consumer networks.
Those networks also provide the non-profit community with avenues for collecting information and data as well, by utilizing those networks to share surveys and “get a read” on public opinion.
Economic development is a team effort, and the Wilmington-Clinton County Chamber of Commerce is proud member of that team.