A chance to meet business to business

ESCANABA — When asked what the Delta Chamber of Commerce does for Delta County, Vickie Micheau, the chamber director, will often reply on behalf of the chamber board that, “The chamber exists to make the community a better place to live. Period.” It is the board of directors’ goal to be an active partner with the community where business and individuals work together to create a healthy and vibrant community.

Building partnerships and relationships is how we create those connections. Business After Hours is a prime example of that. Each month this event is hosted by a chamber member business. It provides opportunities for businesses to meet, network, and build relationships with other businesses. The host and sponsors have a platform to get the word out about their business or to showcase a recent remodel, new location or product. Those attending get to meet others, share ideas and business cards in a friendly, pressure free atmosphere. Providing access to events that are designed to be networking opportunities connects people so they can grow and prosper.

The October Business After Hours was held at Hilltop RV Superstore and co-sponsored by Stewart Manufacturing and Elmer’s Country Market. Hilltop is the longest running host of the event, having done it annually for more than two decades. They host one of the most popular after hours events. This year they decorated the showroom and grounds with a Halloween theme and held a costume contest. It was a huge success and added a fun element to the evening. Nearly 200 people attended the event this month.

Opportunities for business to business contacts are rare, but so important. Building relationships with other businesses within our community keeps ideas flowing, helps provide new perspectives to those ideas and keeps people involved in the process. So important is business networking, that the chamber also holds an annual professional development day. Uppertunities is held annually at the Island Resort and Casino. This year, it is scheduled for March 14. This conference focuses on B2B issues. It is not uncommon to see workshops on collaboration, social media or marketing all key issues in today’s business world.

The chamber knows that when we pool our ideas and resources, we can find solutions to local problems and we can accomplish more together than any of us can alone.

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Mollie Larsen is a staff writer at the Delta Chamber of Commerce