13 Tips on Being a Better Economic Development Professional

By:  Eric Canada –

~~~What email address do you list in LinkedIn? I see 4 variations among economic developers. Company website, no email; company email only; personal email address only; or, no contact info. What you do probably goes to the heart of how you think of LinkedIn. It is a powerful connecting resource for the business community. Make sure you make yourself available. Share all your contact info.

~~~Share… it is OK to brag about your successes. Have a video, a marketing piece, a twitter hashtag that is working for you? Share a success story so we can broadcast it to the profession. We learn best from the experience of others. It is part of being a leader. Send your success story to us at info@blanecanada.com

~~~Manufacturing job opportunities are underexposed… Everyone agrees, school kids and their parents are not aware of the wealth of great job opportunities in manufacturing right in the community.  Check out how the Greater Clinton EDC used a group of middle schoolers to tell a powerful story of manufacturing job opportunity in their region: Made in the Clinton Region video. Check it out …

~~~Just spotted… interesting new award categories for business recognition: Champion of Workforce Development. Recognize companies using innovative practices for recruiting, hiring, training and retaining employees. Source: Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development, MI.

~~~What is your organization’s role… on any given issue? Is it ‘rowing,’ ‘steering,’ or cheering’?” Knowing your strengths is an important first step. Step two, apply your strengths and your organization will amass a record of accomplishment. Finally, don’t be afraid of the passing lane. If something needs to be done and no one is driving the issue, you don’t need anyone’s permission to press ahead. What’s the old saying, “Ask forgiveness, not permission.

~~~Run with it… Valentine’s Day is another opportunity to tell employers how much your organization appreciates them. Why wait? Post an open letter to employers on your website home page. Write a letter to the editor. Send an e-blast calling out employers for their jobs, economic impact, philanthropy, and community engagement. Then, mark your calendar for next year and go big. Plan an event or awards program to recognize employers to coincide with Valentine’s Day Wednesday, February 14, 2018.

~~~ “Ability… is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it. ” Lou Holtz

~~~ “Always… assign the responsibility for follow-through (on a great idea) to the person who had the idea.” Leverage personal motivation, test ability, and benefit from the boost in confidence(attitude). A clear assignment of responsibility is a critical element of leadership. Quote Source: Roy Williams, Monday Morning Memo Note: Highly recommended reading!

~~~Measuring success… Check out Chapter 10 in Martin Seligman’s book Flourish. Seligman uses sound research to break from our traditional measures of success in economic development to focus on measures of wealth and well being he calls the “New Prosperity”. With the continued growth of the Freelance Economy (57 million workers in the US and growing), it may be worth your time to understand Seligman’s work.

~~~Outside the box… this qualifies: A pop-up mall constructed out of refitted shipping containers. The containers provide affordable and flexible leases for lifestyle brands, cafes, restaurants and galleries to trade and succeed in the heart of London’s Shoreditch district. By fusing the concepts of modern street food and placing local and global brands side by side a unique shopping and dining destination emerged.

~~~WARNING!… Highly Effective Gmail Phishing Technique Being Exploited. The phishing technique steals login credentials that have a wide impact, even on experienced users. Consider logging into Google and changing your password, adding two-step verification if you don’t have that yet. What you need to know! Source Wordfence.com Posted earlier via @EDMarketingPro

~~~More aggressive phishing strategies… The bad guys are pressing hard to access more computers to gain access to networks, email lists, etc. Supposed unpaid invoices and undelivered packages are just two examples. Have you had the TALK with your staff about safe emailing? Now is the time.

~~~Would you apply… if you knew the names of job applicants for an CEO position in economic development would be published? The newspaper editor in Amarillo, TX argues the public has a right to know “because of the importance the position has in guiding an organization with a multimillion-dollar budget funded largely by sales tax revenue.” The publisher wanted to publish the names of applicants midstream during the selection process. The Texas Attorney General sided with the publisher’s FOIA request in a decision dated February 3rd, after the selection process concluded. Feb 11th, a month after the new CEO was announced, the editor published the list of applicants.

Based on comments from a few recruiters, there are a few issues:

Public is fine if all candidates know this when they submit. But, you cannot change the rules in the middle of the process.

Good, qualified candidates will not risk a good, secure position to look at an opportunity if their name will be published as a candidate.

Publishing the list at the end of the process only hurts those individuals who were blindsided by the late freedom of information request.

 

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