The Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce is reinventing itself. We do not want to be a conventional business membership organization. As is the case with our peer organizations throughout the United States, new member levels in Chambers of Commerce are flat and member retention rates are falling.
This has prompted some experts to declare that, as an institution, chambers are a vanishing breed. To a certain extent,
we agree. And yet, in the future, a Chamber will become even more important to your business and not less—but to become more important, we must deliver a different kind of value to your organization than we have in the past.
All of us are now in the midst
of a triple convergence—of new players, on new playing fields, developing new processes for horizontal collaboration—that is the most important force shaping global economics and politics in the early twenty-first century.
The world is starting to move away from a primarily
vertical—command and control—system for creating value to a more
horizontal—connect and collaborate—value creation model.
Driving this convergence is three distinct forces...
1) THE POWER OF PLACE
“Paradoxically, the enduring competitive advantages in a global economy lie increasingly in local things—knowledge, relationships, and motivations that distant rivals cannot
—Michael E. Porter, Harvard Business School
2) THE FUTURE OF VALUE
“The best companies are the best collaborators. In the flat world, more and more business will be done through collaborations within and between companies, for a very simple reason: The next layers of value creation—whether in technology, marketing, biomedicine, or manufacturing—are becoming so complex that no single firm is going to be able to master them
—Thomas Friedman, author of The World is Flat
3) THE ECONOMICS OF COLLABORATION
“In contrast to land which is typically improved through the act of possession, knowledge is improved through the act of sharing.
Increasingly in today’s marketplace, a business’s ability to compete depends on its ability to cooperate.”
—William Ury, Global Negotiation Project,
Harvard Law School
As shown in the Value Creation
Hierarchy graphic at the top of this page, businesses must evolve
in order to compete. They are increasingly being forced to
climb up the value creation hierarchy as fast as possible.
By working as a catalyst in the identification, coordination, and
growth of economic clusters, the Chamber is building on the power
of place and creating new forms of value through the act of
collaboration between member organizations. We are leading
our members up this hierarchy by leveraging the three forces of
the triple convergence. In effect, we help our members tap into
something much bigger than themselves and their respective
organizations. That's "The Power of Business."
SPECIFIC THINGS WE DO FOR
In addition to plugging your
business into something much larger, joining the Chamber is like
giving yourself a RAISE: Representation, Access,
Information, Solutions, and Economic Growth
Programs. The Chamber does things that most people think
just happen. Specifically we help you to...
Meet your next customer
Learn more about your market
Collaborate with peers
Better plan for the future
Connect your business to
Be mentored by wisdom
Manage your business with
Develop and retain young
Become more visible
Gain access to capital