When breaking out the 2016 calendar and hanging it on my refrigerator (yes – I still have a hard copy calendar at my house), I realized how much our chosen profession has changed since I started my career. Over the past decade alone, that change has transformed the daily work lives of our dedicated professionals.
For some, the change has created an opportunity to specialize in a specific niche within the field. For others, it created a need to expand the knowledge base of diverse sectors in order to meet the changing needs of the customer base. If you and your organization can navigate and anticipate these trends in customer demand, you are providing a valuable service that uniquely position’s your organization in the marketplace as a “trusted advisor.”
As economic, community and workforce development professionals—along with associated professions—we need to earn the role of “trusted advisor” to the businesses and communities we serve. Earning that title takes consistent and persistent messaging and performance over a period of time. It is a role that is needed in each community to provide consistency as elected leadership at all levels experience change during our nation’s election cycles.
Through past efforts of members, volunteer leadership, contracted staff and previous executive directors, WEDA has earned the role and brand of “The Voice of Economic Development.” In 2016, this voice will reinforce and inform our diverse audiences on the role of community, workforce and economic development efforts and the tools vital to growing local economies.
Our voice is your voice, so I truly hope to see more volunteer engagement in WEDA in 2016. We want to leverage the unique skills of our membership by implementing project teams and committees in a flexible manner to fit your schedules.
Our members and sponsors are our “trusted advisors.” I urge you to find a timeframe that works with your schedule to volunteer on a project or provide input on our economic development initiatives. Check your 2016 calendar and schedule time to be WEDA’s “trusted advisor.”