Since their founding, all chambers of commerce have had one thing in common: they present a unified front to increase the negotiation power and rights of each business apart of the organization.
Because of this, you want your local chamber to be as strong and stable as possible.
While one individual cannot make a chamber of commerce strong on their own, there are many things you can do to strengthen an already strong chamber.
In this post, we will go over some actions you can take that will give your chamber of commerce more impact in your community.
Local chambers of commerce need a strong leadership core to function. The leaders make decisions on how the chamber should help its members, and what political issues should be targeted.
A strong leadership core can make the difference between a chamber of commerce that benefits its members and one that is a feckless mirage of unity.
Many local chambers elect to hire professional managers to handle the day-to-day challenges of managing a chamber of commerce. For especially small chambers, this may be a part-time employee. Typically, the manager is a full-time employee with a background in business management or law.
Some managers are retired business owners or even members of the chamber, but that is rarer.
Instead of looking to manage the entire chamber, a chamber member can have more effect by joining a committee. Many chambers elect members to the various boards, so you may have to campaign during a set election period. Smaller boards staff their boards on a volunteer basis, so if you are in a smaller chamber, it may be easier to take part.
Typical committees include economic development, education, government relations, human resources, public affairs, and tourism.
Dedicated members of these committees can have a monumental impact on the strength of their chamber. Going above and beyond what is required can not only benefit your business but your community at large.
There are several different ways to identify what your local chamber can improve upon.
One of the best ways is to consider what your business needs from the chamber and how it could improve.
Another way is to survey your fellow chamber members and ask them what they feel is lacking from your local chamber.
Once you have identified your chamber's weak points, focus on strengthening those. The strongest chambers of commerce are the most well-rounded.
Before you begin taking action, collaborate with your fellow chamber members to formulate a strategy that will address your issues.
A good chamber should help each member's business grow and increase job opportunities for local workers. This will strengthen the local community and your local chamber.
The more job opportunities your town has, the stronger the economy will be. The stronger the economy is the better your chamber of commerce.
If you need help on advice for strengthening your local chamber, reach out to the Southern Ohio Chamber of Commerce. We advise and negotiate for local chambers all over the state of Ohio and make your local chamber work for you.