MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT
2015 was an outstanding year for the Amherst Chamber of Commerce. Our membership continues to grow, our events continue to flourish and our communications continue to excel. 2016 promises to be even better!
The staff, leadership and a good portion of our membership has been engaged in strategy sessions for over a year. We have concluded that Strategic Planning should not be a once a decade process. To remain relevant as an organization and to continue our legacy of providing products and services that meet the needs of our members, we must always be strategizing. That strategizing isn't limited to determining what workshops would resonate with our members in the next quarter but how we can organize to be nimble enough to respond to unanticipated needs. That is the essence of the Amherst Chamber of Commerce strategy. You will see much evidence of this as we kick off 2016. We will host regular focus groups, conduct surveys, post questionnaires on Facebook, launch interactive sections on our website, and ask for community feedback from our Bee column and, generally, request input from the business community so that we have the data necessary to provide solutions to your challenges. Our role is to serve as a Connector! It is not our intention to staff the Chamber with the experts in every capacity necessary to deliver the solution. Rather, we will serve as the conduit. In addition to identifying initiatives, organizations or individuals that can be of specific service to our members, we are hoping to create opportunities for our members to communicate with one another and build relationships that collaborate for success - individually and collectively.
You might wonder what this 'Chamber Speak' means. Is it smoke and mirrors or something tangible that could be of value to you? The proof will be in our increased communications, the expanded penetration resulting from those communications and the inflated engagement by our membership. Our goal is simple; identify our member's needs, respond to those needs and oversee a successful, sustainable organization with an empowered membership base.
On behalf of the Amherst Chamber of Commerce, I extend our best wishes for a successful 2016!