THE LOCAL CHAMBERS’ EXCHANGE

LBCCC Actively Pursuing Partnerships

October is my favorite time of the year! I love this time of the year with the sunny days, cooler nights and the brilliance of color that will occur over the next several weeks. I also love this season because of all the wonderful activities from now through the end of the year, including all the
activities associated with the Chamber.

Before I give you the breakdown, I want to explain where much of our focus has been for the last several months and why we are doing so many new exciting partnerships. In our Board Chair’s column in LBCCC’s Outlook Magazine this month, Chair Denise Bowman from Hill Wallack LLP talks about “Thinking Like Your Customer” and she is absolutely on target! Recently the Lower Bucks County Chamber of Commerce began to take a closer look of how we can meet the needs of a diverse business community and a membership that is reflective of that. Diversity can imply many different things and we looked at it in a broad perspective that includes categories of business and various industry segments. Looking at the diversity of our membership, we were forced to recognize entire categories of our membership and potential members whose needs we were not addressing.

Also, for a couple of years now we have been doing partnership events with our member businesses. Some of these events have been relatively small scale events but our largest events like the Bucks County Ball and ECONference 2014 would not have been possible without incredible partners like the Newtown Athletic Club, Hill Wallack LLP, McCafferty Auto Group, PARX Casino, Visit Bucks County and many others too numerous to mention here. These valuable relationships allow us to take advantage of enormous and excitingly new opportunities that we could not otherwise bring to our membership and the business community. But we have also learned much. By partnering with others we have taken ourselves out the potential vacuum that we may have otherwise operated within. Our member partners have educated us with their perspective and insight and have challenged us to “raise the bar” and we intend to utilize what we have learned.

Moving forward, we are pulling the two focuses together. The first effort in this direction was working with the hospitality industry to facilitate one of the most outstanding grand opening and ribbon cutting events that the Marriott Corporation had ever done (their words not mine).

In June, we partnered with many individuals and groups including the County of Bucks, Economic Development Corporation, Industrial Development Authority, Univest Bank and Trust Co., KIPC and many others to facilitate our first-ever Manufacturers Forum. The success of this event was because we let the manufacturers and distributors of manufactured goods determine the agenda and key topics to be discussed. We pulled it together but we listened to those who live it every day in that field to drive the process. This one event was just a beginning of using our resources and connections to assist the manufacturers in education, training, workforce development, advocacy and making meaningful connections. Look for the upcoming GreenTech 2014 at Metaphase Technologies in Bristol. They are one of our newest manufacturers who joined after the Manufacturers Forum.

This fall, was the single most exciting autumn ever at the Chamber. On October 2nd our own Veterans Initiative led the way to offer a Veterans and military personnel job fair unlike any other! It has been humbling and an extreme honor to work with this passionate and dedicated group. There has been research, seminars and trainings to prep for this event. The goal was to match Veterans with real job opportunities as well as supportive services and follow up with mentoring and counseling in their career searches. Many (in fact the largest percentage) of the participants in this event are brand new to the Chamber. This exposure has opened the door to many new relationships for us including the ESGR, National Chamber of Commerce, Heroes to Hired, Career Link, Veterans Services, numerous companies and organizations hiring Veterans and many others. We were thrilled to facilitate an event that honored our Veterans and empowered them through opportunities to build long-term relationships. On October 5th we facilitated another event in partnership with the George School and St. Mary Medical Center, our first-ever Fall Health Fest. What we learned from this is in our own database we had over 120 members who are perfect matches for this opportunity. This category is an exciting blend of health and wellness, fitness and nutrition, and medical services. George School was the perfect venue and utilized the school’s beautiful campus to showcase all the local services that are related to health and wellness. This event was not only a perfect opportunity for an entire category of our membership, but it was also family friendly, open to the entire community and a fun and inexpensive way to spend an afternoon.

Also in October was ABC: A Night of Arts. Business. Culture in Bristol. Another partnership with Grundy Foundation, Lower Bucks Hospital and the Arts & Cultural Council of Bucks County looking to make Bristol Borough the destination for making meaningful business connections and building relationships surrounded by arts and culture from all over the County. Once again, working with existing members in a new and exciting way while building new relationships, new partners and showcasing one of our most historic boroughs in Lower Bucks County.

In addition to all of the above, the Chamber will also be offering seminars, forums and guest speakers that will inform, educate and challenge you to new ideas. There is much more to come for the rest of this year, and next. The future is bright and exciting and as a Chamber member it’s all yours to experience.

LBCCC, 409 Hood Blvd, Fairless Hills, PA 19030, (215) 943-7400 • www.lbccc.org