MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT - Every Member Has a Voice
The Amherst Chamber Board of Directors is in the final phase of our Strategic Planning initiative. We have completed the outreach phase and thank the many, many members who took the time to weigh in. We have compiled the findings, prioritized them and are incorporating them into our short term and long term plan. One of the strengths of our organization has always been our interface with our members. While we don't pretend to please all of the people all of the time, we do make every effort to empower our members and provide them with ample opportunity to communicate their needs and their vision for the chamber. In the past, we have used surveys, one on one meetings and anecdotal data collected to formulate our program of work. Now, we are mobilizing Focus Groups that will meet regularly to, not only identify programs and services, but to evaluate them. It is anticipated that we will begin these in March, led by Racheal Brown from Employer Services Group, Immediate Past Chair of our Business Resource Council. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in participating and we will forward you the appropriate information.
A large percentage of our membership attends our monthly Business After Hours networking events or participates in our Tools for Prosperity workshops and Six in Sixty presentations. But, if you would like to get more active, please consider joining one of our councils. The Public Policy Council meets the fourth Friday of every month at 8:30 AM. We meet with public officials from all levels of government and vet issues of importance to the business community, in preparation for the publication of our Annual Public Policy Agenda.
The Business Resource Council is expanding its reach to include all small business members or firms that do business with small businesses. We will be doing a quarterly newsletter featuring articles from our members and intend to launch a blog in the near future. Additionally, the group will launch the 2016 program year with Buffalo Means Business, a huge networking event being held April 28th at Prior Aviation. We anticipate more than 1000 people in attendance, representing businesses from across the region. The Small Business Awards Luncheon is scheduled for May 20th at Samuel's Grande Manor and will, once again, feature a showcase where small business members have an opportunity to display their products and/or promote their services.
Emerging Business Leaders (EBL) continues to grow and is a great opportunity for the next generation of community and business leaders to build their peer group, access training and support the region. The Advisory Board of this group is busy planning their next networking event - Spring ProMix as well as organizing Coffee Connections and Food for Thought events. Contact email@example.com for more information.
This is just a small sampling of the Chamber's activities. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with suggestions.