This is an article I wrote for the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce. I want to share it because the core theme applies to so many communities.
Businesses can, and must, be a key part of thriving, sustainable communities.
“I’ve noticed something about business in Cambridge recently and it excites me. We all know that the town is growing and growing fast but despite this, we are more than ever a business community.
Our Chamber is to the fore of this activity, not only regularly getting good attendances at its events but also for associated groups such as Optimum and 1st XV. The I-Site has become more prominent, BNI groups are going well and elite sport is providing so many new opportunities to leverage off similar organisations.
We talk to each other about our businesses, we openly share information and happily lend a hand when needed.
Sometimes it’s easy to look around and wonder what’s happened to our little town. So many new faces and so many new businesses. Busy streets and even traffic lights, we’ve come a long way from the days when the state highway went through the main street and we had sale yards down Carters Flat. Often growth can lead to that big city feel where everyone looks after themselves and other businesses are simply classified as the competition. I believe we’ve done the opposite and actually strengthened our community. This is why I’m excited.
At CSC Buying Group our passion for supporting thriving communities has become our purpose, with “Building Richer Communities” our new mission statement. In an increasingly diverse digital world, we see this as more necessary now than ever before. Like any community, businesses need to support each other and play a part in sustaining that community.
Buying local, employing locals and advocating for our local businesses should continue to be at the core of what we do. The question we should be asking now is how can we take this further?
For me, it’s about ensuring that we continually expand the size of the pie, not competing for a larger piece of what is already there. We need to strive to earn business from outside of Cambridge, even exporting for the ultimate ‘outside’ money.
There’s some great examples of this in Cambridge, some are very well known while others are quietly achieving well out of the limelight. We now need to grow the numbers doing this.
Obviously business growth also leads to employment meaning our town becomes far more economically sustainable, and let’s not forget the social benefits of full employment.
Singly we may be small but uniting and working together, we can get the scale to compete with the big city slickers – in their back yards. We all need to challenge ourselves and seek ways we can make this happen. Let’s talk unashamedly about Cambridge businesses taking on the world!
Finally, as we start to enjoy the benefits of growth, let us never forget what makes us unique … the village that is a growing community.”
The Chamber News is always a great read. Tania and the team do an amazing job with it. Read more