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The Leadership Lansing Blog is the open communication forum of the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce. In the Leadership Lansing Blog, we will highlight all things related to the Greater Lansing business community. We will feature posts from our staff, our membership and the legislative leaders of this region. If you have any questions or would like to be a contributor to the Leadership Lansing Blog, please contact Eric Dimoff, Marketing and Communications Director, at 517-853-6460 or We appreciate the continued support!


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What is the Chamber of Commerce?

Posted By Michelle Rahl, Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce, Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Updated: Tuesday, September 30, 2014

What is The Chamber of Commerce?

At the heart of the local economy and the backbone of virtually every great community you’ll find a chamber of commerce celebrating and promoting the diversity and uniqueness of their community.  Chambers of Commerce help form the fabric of America.  Their efforts result in business attraction, job creation, improved education, beautification and more.  Despite all of this, the question is still often asked, “What is the Chamber of Commerce?”

Technically, chambers of commerce are business associations generally incorporated as a 501(c)(6), that work diligently to improve the economic, cultural, and overall business climate for the areas they serve.  They are typically private, not-for-profit corporations.  Chambers are governed by a volunteer board of directors and employ professional staff to accomplish their mission.  While that is impressive, it is the daily work of chambers that moves communities, the state and this nation forward. 

Today’s chambers of commerce focus on a broad range of activities and support for both business and the community at large.  From community and workforce development initiatives to information dissemination and legislative advocacy, chamber professionals and members work with other talented leaders in business, community and government to create a positive environment and to make the community a better place to work, live and play. 

The beauty of chambers of commerce is that they truly embody the spirit of entrepreneurship, ingenuity and innovation of their communities and the businesses they represent; therefore, specific programs, products and services vary by chamber and are tailored specifically to the needs of the local community.  These programs often include:

  • Business development and growth programs for large and small businesses
  • Custom research, local/regional economic forecasts, or other analysis
  • One-stop shops for information or services related to starting a business, getting elected to public office or finding a job
  • Fighting for pro-business as well as important community relevant legislation and to form public and private alliances

This list goes on.  Whether it is economic development, tourism, community events, or those mentioned above the chamber of commerce is the “go to” resource for information.  It is the convener of people and a place where things get done.  In short, chambers of commerce provide the community leadership necessary to develop the economic well-being of their region. 

As you see, chambers of commerce are involved in many facets of the community (sometimes quietly) to help create places we call home. October is Chamber of Commerce month in Michigan. This month is set aside annually to reflect and show our appreciation for the work of many dedicated individuals and organizations across the state.

Now that you have a better sense of what the chamber is, you can better understand the role they play in your community.  With this new knowledge, take a moment to stop in and meet your chamber of commerce staff and learn more about the powerful work they do and the contributions they make on behalf of you, local businesses and the community.  If you already know them (and chances are you do), drop in, say thanks and tell them how much you appreciate them for their work!

Submitted by: Bob Thomas, Michigan Association of Chamber Professionals 

Tags:  business attraction  business climate  business development  chamber of commerce  community leadership  cultural  economic  entrepreneurship  ingenuity  innovation  job creation  public policy  regionalism  workforce development 

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Delivering Value to our Members

Posted By Michelle Rahl, Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce, Thursday, April 3, 2014
We at the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce are proud to deliver our 2013 Annual Report in the April edition of FOCUS Magazine. I encourage you to take some time and review the report on our activities over the past 12 months and look ahead to our exciting plans for 2014.

I have written many times about the importance of our members in the mission of the Chamber. Our team understand that our success depends on the success of our members, to whom we are dedicated to serve with every one of our programs and services. We also understand that our members make an investment when they join the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce, and that it is our responsibility to deliver a return on that investment.

When it comes to value, we believe that a membership in the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce is one of the smartest investments for any business in the tri-county region to make. The American Chamber of Commerce Executives organization recently commissioned the Schapiro Group to conduct a web-based study of 2,000 adults nationwide, to determine how consumers view businesses that are members of a chamber of commerce. The results showed:
  • Being active in the local chamber of commerce is an effective business strategy. It communicates to consumers that a company uses good business practices, is reputable, cares about its customers, and is involved in the community;
  • If a company shows it is highly involved in its local chamber, consumers are 10% more likely to think its products stack up better against its competitors;
  • When a consumer thinks more favorably of a company because of its involvement in a chamber, it is because he or she infers the company is trustworthy and cares about its customers; and
  • When consumers know a small business is a member of a chamber, they are 49% more likely to think favorably of it and 80% more likely to purchase goods or services from the company.
I am proud of the hard work that our Chamber team continues to perform dayin and day-out on behalf of our members. Those efforts are reflected in the pages of the April FOCUS Magazine, which details the great success we have enjoyed over the past year in delivering high-quality signature events and business networking opportunities, government relations and advocacy, professional development and educational opportunities, business growth initiatives, affinity programs that save our members money and outstanding publications and communications.

Why do we do it? Quite simply, it’s all about building a better region by building better businesses. For those of us at the Lansing Chamber of Commerce, we believe achieving those worthwhile goals begins with a solid foundation of delivering the highest possible value every day to all of our members. 

Tim Daman is the President & CEO of the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce

Tags:  Annual Report  Chamber of Commerce  Member Benefits  Membership  Regionalism 

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