What Is A Chamber Of Commerce? What Does It Do? How Does It Function?
The goal of your chamber of commerce is to promote the commercial, industrial, civic, cultural, and general interest of your city, area, or region. To accomplish this, action committees explore every avenue and possibility. These committees usually include those working in the areas of industrial development, agriculture, aviation, conventions, membership, citizenship, publicity, highways, community development, civic affairs, retail promotions, and water resources. Every individual, firm, and profession derives direct benefits in a growing, stable economy. Such an economy is the result of your chamber’s efforts.
Why Should I Be A Member of My Chamber of Commerce?
Because the chamber of commerce carries the reputation of being a leader of business integrity in my community, and my affiliation lends my business credibility.
Because the chamber of commerce is a close-knit organization in which members support each other’s businesses.
Because my chamber of commerce has a voice in the legislation that is passed at our state capitol. That legislation directly affects how I am able to conduct business in Texas. I want to have an influence over the legislation that my chamber of commerce endorses.
Because the chamber of commerce requires financial support in order to perform its job of increasing the economic prosperity of the area which it serves.
Because the chamber of commerce unifies the public spirit of my community and directs it into useful and constructive channels that are not limited to business.
Because I feel a sense of personal obligation to improve the quality of life in the community which I live.
What It Is
Your chamber of commerce is a voluntary organization of citizens who are investing their time and money in a community development program – working together to improve the economic, civic, and cultural fortitude of the region, community, or area. Any citizen who is interested in helping to develop the community is eligible to be a member of the chamber of commerce. The direct benefit is a stronger local economy: more businesses and more jobs with higher salaries and better fringe benefits. The indirect benefits are more public programs, better schools, and less crime. The work of the chamber is financed by the investments of its members. The dues structure is designed to permit even the smallest business to be a member. The chamber of commerce is guided by a board of directors, chamber members who are business leaders in the area served. When the budget allows, a full-time paid staff and chamber executive will handle the daily operations.
What It Does
The chamber of commerce is a service institution as well as an action institution. It provides a medium through which people can take effective action for the progress of the community. It helps create job opportunities by stimulating industrial, commercial, and agricultural growth. It seeks the improvement of community facilities, such as streets, highways, parks, and schools. It brings conventions, sales meetings, and tourist activities to the area. It provides the opportunity for members to network with other business leaders and attend business education seminars. In all of these functions, the chamber of commerce is serving as a partner to every business and professional in the community.
How It Functions
The chamber of commerce functions through the working committees of the organization. Money, planning, and inspiration do not fulfill the chamber’s mission unless the members work vigorously on the committee of their choice. Careful study is made of the community needs and an action blueprint, the Program of Work, is designed. The goal of the Program of Work is to create more dollars for more people and to improve the economic welfare of the community. Every member has a voice in determining the policies and projects that the chamber undertakes. And every member is needed on active committees to achieve the chamber’s goals. Below is how the chamber of commerce can specifically contribute to your type of business:
For All Members
The chamber carries the opinions of its members to city, state, and nationally elected officials, as well as monitors legislative issues that impact the business community.
For The Retailer
The chamber works for industrial and business development which brings with it new residents with new money to spend in local stores. It maintains a continuous program for inviting convention delegates. National surveys reveal that twenty-two percent of convention dollars are spent in retail stores.
For The Service Establishment
The chamber works to provide population growth, assuring additional customers and income. It helps increase the development of highways, recreational areas, and new industries, while expanding existing industries. This increases the demand for services.
For The Manufacturer & Wholesaler
The chamber works for the best shipping services at the lowest possible cost. It furnishes advice on freight transport matters and compiles statistical information on trade territory population, purchasing power, and marketing strength.
For The Farmer & Rancher
The chamber encourages and promotes sound agricultural programs and practices with major attention to soil conservation and livestock programs. It frequently coordinates the planning of agricultural agencies’ and sponsors’ joint efforts to improve ranching and farming techniques and increase profits.
For The Construction, Real Estate, And Insurance Firm
The chamber provides an expanding market for construction, real estate, and insurance by attracting new industry and residents, promoting businesses, and helping to create new streets and highways. It encourages expansion programs and modernization for established firms.
For the Professionals
The chamber actively strives for the growth of the city, including business expansions which insure a healthy, growing economy, rewarded with high paying jobs and a strong tax base for better community services. The chamber also seeks better transportation services to make the city more accessible and convenient.
For The Hotel, Motel, Restaurant Operator
The chamber works to attract and service conventions, trade shows, conferences, and sales meetings, which bring new patrons and money into the local economy. National surveys reveal that more than 40 percent of the convention dollars are spent in hotels, motels, and restaurants.
For The Home And Property Owner
The chamber supports an intensive city beautification program, with cleanliness, street lighting, tree planting, and other projects aimed at making your city a better place to live. It cooperates with educational facilities to ensure quality school districts and the availability of higher education.