Chamber Blog

Chamber Legislative Forums: Engaging and Lively

10. January 2015 14:24 by Admin

Dear friends,

The 2015 Indiana General Assembly kicked off last week and we expect another lively session. This year’s primary goal is to pass the state’s biennial budget.  But we’ll also hear about education funding, transportation (see Chamber news story above), Sunday alcohol sales, gambling, ethics reform and more.

Part of the Chamber’s role is to advocate for business. We do this by having one-on-one conversations with government leaders, taking stands on important matters, and hosting forums where business leaders (like you) can learn about legislation and ask questions.

If you didn’t attend last week’s Legislation Matters Luncheon, you missed one the most engaging legislative luncheons we’ve held in years. It was a perfect example of how we might not always agree with our legislators, and they might not always agree with each other, but we are facilitate these discussions with integrity and respect.

We hope you’ll join us for the next Legislation Matters Series luncheons on Feb. 10 and March 6 to learn about how state and local government impacts our business.

Thank you for being a part of this special community of engaged business leaders.

Ever onward,

Christian M. Maslowski

President & CEO

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January 2015 14:24

What a year; What's next?

11. November 2014 11:16 by Admin

Dear friends,

What a 60th year we had in 2014! From our energetic anniversary event in April and our first-time hosting US Senator Dan Coats in May, to our inaugural Women Leaders Symposium in October we continued to sustain our momentum and leadership.

What’s more, we are currently in an exciting membership initiative to put an exclamation mark on the end of this anniversary year. Greater Greenwood Chamber membership stands at 670 now, but by the time the calendar turns to 2015, we will have broken the 800 member mark. (How’s that for optimism and confidence?)

As we turn now to year 61 and look ahead, we know we will only improve. We remain focused on making the greater Greenwood-southern Indy economy as fertile as possible for existing business expansion and new business growth. We are committed to returning value for your membership investment and sincerely desire to be your business partner no matter where you are in your journey.

This is a special business community. We value relationships, integrity, shared success, and excellence. These tenets have fueled our Chamber’s growth for 60 years. I expect nothing less for our business community, this Chamber, and your business in the coming years.

Thank you for being a part of this special community of engaged, confident business leaders.

Ever onward,

Christian Maslowski

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November 2014 11:16

Revenue Nuetral or Race to the Bottom?

12. August 2014 07:22 by Admin

Dear friends,

Most of the questions and discussion at our recent Legislation Matters panel with Greenwood City leaders focused on balanced budgets and about various city amenities being revenue neutral.  As business leaders, revenue generation is a natural path of discourse in our daily lives. We strive to minimize and allocate overhead to our revenue centers in order to maximize profits. It’s natural, therefore, we expect government to do the same.

It wasn’t until later in the panel discussion when one panelist reminded us of this: the City’s role is to provide attractive amenities and services, and to create and maintain proper infrastructure, in order to enhance the quality of life and attract economic development.

In essence, most of the City’s product is overhead or investment for future growth.

The panelist continued: as long as we are prudent with our resources (responsibly investing them back into community development priorities), and we balance the budget’s bottom line (not spending more than we take in), we should not expect every service and amenity to be revenue neutral. Parks and recreation is a perfect example of this.

The business community knows part of Greenwood’s community development challenges were caused by a race to the bottom; an effort to take in and spend as little as possible. As a result, community amenities and infrastructure didn’t keep up with growth, and even deteriorated. With responsible planning, careful stewardship, and fidelity to their vision for a better Greenwood, City leaders should continue to invest in Greenwood.

The Chamber is actively engaged in the discussion. Our business advocacy council is particularly engaged in streamlining the process to create a business in Greenwood. As successful business leaders, your individual feedback and participation is needed, too.

Thank you for your membership in this community of confident, visionary business leaders.

Ever onward,

Christian Maslowski

Christian@GreenwoodChamber.com

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August 2014 07:22

Difficult Decisions

21. July 2014 04:20 by Admin

Dear friends,

Business leadership requires us to make complex decisions.

We forecast how a decision today will impact revenue in a year. We try to understand how a seemingly small, incremental decision on A will impact B. We consider if taking risk in one area will impact resources and opportunity elsewhere.

And, more often than not, business leaders must make decisions when we do not have a clear picture of every detail.

When faced with a complex decision to make, it’s good to have trusted colleagues and mentors. They can’t make the decision for you, but they can give their honest assessment and share their experiences. Sometimes they can see what we can’t, even when it’s right in front of us.

The Chamber offers formal business mentoring opportunities from our partners with SCORE and the SBDC, and informal mentoring via chats with colleagues at Chamber events. The next time you are faced with a complex decision to make, don’t go it alone. Give us a call.

Thank you for your membership in this community of trusted business leaders.

Ever onward,

Christian Maslowski

Christian@GreenwoodChamber.com

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July 2014 04:20

One of the Greatest Benefits to Belonging

23. June 2014 11:31 by Admin

Dear friends,

We don’t often talk about one of the greatest benefits of belonging to the Chamber. It’s this: You belong to a special community of friends who truly understand what it takes to run a business.

What does this mean? Unlike social and service clubs, our mission and reason for being is to support you as a business leader. This means the CHAMBER is the place where others understand – and can empathize with – the hard work, strategy, cost, personal sacrifice, and challenges we face in running a business. Your fellow CHAMBER members understand the careful balance (or seemingly no balance at all) of business demands with your personal and family life. And the CHAMBER is a community of connected business leaders who will help identify resources to give your business a boost.

Business leadership is no easy task. Your fellow members understand this. It’s why we hold Chamber events. So come to a Chamber event and share your “next big idea.” Come to share your current business challenge. Come find a new business referral partner. And come to develop a relationship with a trusted business mentor.

Or just come to Chamber events and enjoy the camaraderie. Relax in the comfort of knowing you are not alone. Thank you for being a part of this special community of business leaders.

Ever onward,

Christian Maslowski

Christian@GreenwoodChamber.com

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June 2014 11:31

We are Chamber Leaders

11. June 2014 12:13 by Admin

Dear Friends,

 

Leadership Johnson County held its 2014 graduation in May.  Yours truly graduated along with several outstanding Chamber members (2014 is the best class!).

 

We learned the foundation to good leadership includes decision-making, active listening, and collaboration.  We also learned one size doesn't fit all.  Each situation commands different leadership skills.  What's more, every individual leader brings his or her personal style and values to the table.

 

Most importantly, we learned that leadership doesn't always come from the CEO, the project manager, or the most tenured staff team member.  Each of us can be a leader by how we choose to interact within our teams.  This reminded me of our Chamber.

 

We are a strong business community not just because we have an experienced board of directors and dedicated group of ambassadors, but also because of our members.  Our members are leaders because they selflessly choose to mentor one another.  Our members are leaders because they engage in dialogue at legislative events about key issues impacting all business, not just their own.  And our members are leaders because they simply choose to belong to the Chamber; believing that "high tides lift all ships" and knowing the Chamber's work can raise that tide.

 

Thank you for being an active member in this community of business leaders.  Your leadership is not taken for granted and is sincerely appreciated.

Ever Onward,

Christian Maslowski

Christian@GreenwoodChamber.com 

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June 2014 12:13

Stop to Take a Look Back

13. May 2014 03:44 by Admin

How well do you know your company’s history? Has your company recorded it?

As the Chamber celebrates our 60th anniversary leading business, we are taking a look back. We believe we stand on the shoulders of those who came before us and want to honor their contributions. But sometimes our records are not quite clear.

As business leaders, we focus on the actions we must take today, and we look ahead to our goals and strategies for tomorrow. We rarely look back.

I found looking back to be rewarding. It has improved my appreciation for our success today as compared to our humble beginnings. I better understand my place in time; my role in shepherding the organization today for future members. And it’s just been fun to see old photos and recognize names of folks who are still leading our community today.

You may not be embarking on a 60th anniversary. Your clients might not ask about your beginnings. But your leadership and everyone personally engaged in “the now chapter” of your story can stand to strengthen their connection to and appreciation for your company if you take a moment to record and share your history.

Ever onward,

Christian Maslowski

Christian@GreenwoodChamber.com

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May 2014 03:44

At the Closing of the Year

31. December 2013 06:34 by Admin

Dear friends,

The quiet, cold air in the morning and clean blanket of snow draped over our community ushers in the closing of the year. It encourages reflection for what we have accomplished the last year, and gives us pause to consider what we would like to do differently after the calendar turns.

I can’t help but reflect on the economic improvements our local and national economies have made the past 12 months. I reflect on the new members who joined our business community as well as our long-time friends who continue to renew their membership. I am pleased with the new Chamber website and all its improved member marketing and resource features. And I reflect upon the ways we strengthened our business advocacy efforts at the local, state, and federal levels.

Our office phones are quiet so I know you are spending time reflecting and looking ahead, too. If your reflections lead you to thoughts on our Chamber and business communities, please give me a call to discuss them over a warm cup of coffee or bowl of soup. Thank you for your membership. Peace to joy to you at the closing of the year.

Ever onward,

Christian Maslowski

Christian@GreenwoodChamber.com

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December 2013 06:34

What are you thankful for?

15. November 2013 05:46 by Admin

Dear friends,

Someone recently told me they don't believe we laugh enough in business. I'd have to agree. Sales, competition, and health care are not laughing matters.

But I would also add we aren't grateful enough. We could spend more time appreciating what we DO have, how far we HAVE come, and what OTHERS have done for us. This is true at the Chamber. While our mission as a Chamber is to optimize your business potential, we recognize it takes a lot of terrific people to build this special business community. And we are so thankful for each and every member volunteer.

So we decided to spend a lot of time on the Chamber's social media channels talking about being thankful. We invite you to join the conversation. Tell us what you are thankful for this year.  Find us on Facebook and Twitter to share your thoughts.

Thank you for your membership. We are so grateful you joined us.

Ever onward,

Christian Maslowski

Christian@GreenwoodChamber.com

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November 2013 05:46

Government Shutdown: Normal Risk?

15. October 2013 06:46 by Admin

Dear friends,

Running a business comes along with an inherent level of risk. Shifting consumer behaviors (demand), new competitors, and supply costs are chief among the risks we face. We also take risks when we do or don’t change our products according to industry trends.

For some entrepreneurs, predicting and managing risk is part of the fun. It’s strategy. It’s how we win.

However, we typically rely on a moderate level of stability from our federal government. Sure, there is always risk from new federal laws and regulations that impact our business. But economic risk stemmed from our federal government simply becoming too dysfunctional to operate and defaulting on its obligations? This is not normal risk. Nor should it be. (Should it?)

The Greater Greenwood Chamber is your reliable business partner. Our efforts over the last few years have been intently focused on (1) improving services to small business, (2) increasing legislative advocacy efforts, and (3) supporting your quest to achieve better business branding. There is no risk the Greater Greenwood Chamber will close tomorrow. There is no risk we will stop fighting for your business success. We are strong. We are resolute. Thank you for being a part of this special community of reliable, confident business leaders.

Ever onward,

Christian Maslowski

Christian@GreenwoodChamber.com

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October 2013 06:46