Value of Economic Development

The value of economic development is rooted in understanding the value of community. Groups of people organize in different ways. Most people assume that community means government. Community is also defined as an association, group of businesses or people with common interests. Many communities do not understand the value of economic development and what a professional economic developer does. It is sometimes thought that community growth will happen regardless so why invest in economic development. To say investment in economic development is of value because it brings revenue to communities does not give full credit to the profession. Economic development is about building healthy and sustainable economies and therefore having healthy and sustainable communities.

Some people presume that economic developers are only found in the municipal context. Our approach sees things a little differently. We believe that there are economic developers in private business and that there are consulting economic developers. We also define communities as communities of interest, and not just local government.

How economic development helps communities:

Increased Tax Base – the additional revenue provided by economic development supports, maintains and improves local infrastructure.
Business Retention – up to 80% of job creation is from the existing business base. When economic development communicate effectively with local business they are more likely to stay in the community and contribute to the economy.
Economic Diversification – a diversified economic base helps expand the local economy and reduces a community’s vulnerability and dependence on a single industry sector.
Job Development – economic development provides the environment in which better wages, benefits
and opportunities for advancement occur.
Self-sufficiency – a stronger economic base means public services are less dependent on intergovernmental influences, alliances, and transfer payments which can change with each regime change.
Land Value and Use – land and property is used for its highest and best use to maximize its value. When economic development is applied, it optimizes the use of land and resources.
Recognition of Local Products and Services – successful economic development occurs when locally produced goods and services are consumed in the local market to a greater degree and recognized as unique SKU’s in the broader marketplace.
Quality of Life – more local dollars and jobs increase economic stability for the entire community, including the overall standard of living for the residents.

How economic development helps business:

Providing the first contact in a community, that acts as a business concierge.
Providing demographic profiles to companies interested in locating in the community.
Providing the connection between business and all levels and forms of government.
Assistance in resolving where possible, issues related to permitting, approvals, public perception and information.
Assistance in making introductions to programs and services that may assist the company’s ability to grow
Assistance in making introductions to programs and services that may assist the company in finding new markets

How economic development helps members, taxpayers and shareholders:

Coordination between public and private interests for the common good.
Ensuring that outcomes are balanced between social, environmental, economic and governance outputs.
Ensures fair play among interests for the benefit of the overall community.

Place Brand Management

Governments and Companies often use brand management in an attempt to change a potential customer’s perception of the community or product’s value. Through positive association, a brand manager can strengthen the community’s marketing and gain brand value. This is an important step in perception management because it aims at producing the most effective results. Brand management deals with competitors, promotions, costs, and satisfaction in order to earn trust from consumers and show positive feedback.
This practice stems from the military version of perception management. There are nine strategies for perception management.
These include:
Preparation — Having clear goals and knowing the ideal position you want people to hold.
Credibility — Make sure all of your information is consistent, often using prejudices or expectations to increase credibility.
Multichannel support — Have multiple arguments and facts to reinforce your information.
Centralized control — Employing people for destination management or consultants to curate the information.
Security — The nature of the campaign is known by few.
Flexibility — The campaign adapts and changes over time as needs change.
Coordination — The organization or propaganda ministry is organized in a hierarchical pattern in order to maintain consistent and synchronized distribution of information.
Concealment — Contradicting information is eliminated.
Untruthful statements — Communicate the truth.

Corporate Planning

Strategic planning is an organization’s process of defining its strategy, or direction, and making decisions on allocating its resources to pursue this strategy. In order to determine the future direction of the organization, it is necessary to understand its current position and the possible avenues through which it can pursue particular courses of action. Generally, strategic planning deals with at least one of three key questions:
1) “What do we do?”
2) “For whom do we do it?”
3) “How do we excel?”
Successful and sustainable transformation efforts require leaders who know how to manage change. At the simplest level, managing change means:
* Knowing what you want to accomplish and creating a compelling vision that motivates others
* Understand stakeholders and communicating with them early, consistently and often
* Managing the varying levels of support and resistance that will inevitably emerge in response to any change
* Change Leadership is a skillset that is required throughout any deployment, from planning and executing to sustaining improvements.
* Change Leadership is essential for both high level executives and program leaders, who are responsible for setting the vision, communicate the vision and make the changes happen.