The laid-back, close-knit atmosphere is one of the greatest benefits of the networking event, according to Chamber President Jenny English. Each participant gets a chance to introduce their business and give a brief description of the services they provide. English says nothing beats conventional one-on-one interaction to establish long-standing relationships in the community.
“In this day of social media, person-to-person contact is still important,” she says.
Every month, a local business hosts the Chamber’s event for everyone to enjoy; however, participation only requires membership with the Chamber, which is an investment English considers greatly beneficial in this economic climate.
“It’s about relationships. People like to do business with people they know. This gives people a chance to get acquainted with other business people,” she says.
The after-hours event includes a range of individuals, including civic club members and industry professionals. English stresses that resourcefulness is a highly essential component for success, particularly for non-profit groups that tend to operate on a very limited budget. She says such events open the door for new donors and investors. According to the West Georgia Small Business Development Center in Carrollton, it’s tougher for business owners to get a loan today due to tighter restraints from bankers. Therefore, every financial contribution makes a difference.
In an effort to assist local businesses further, the Chamber will soon expand their networking opportunities by holding a Business After-Hours event for home business owners at the Haralson County Chamber of Commerce in October.
The state Department of Labor reports an unemployment rate of 9.3 in Georgia, and though it’s only a slight increase from months ago, the inching numbers prove that job loss continues to spread throughout the state. Therefore, English believes that any accessible marketing tool can be used to help sustain businesses in this weakening economy.
She encourages people from all professional backgrounds to look out for the Haralson County Chamber of Commerce Membership Drive that will be held in August. Online registration for membership is also currently available at www.haralson.org, or call 770-537-5594 for more information.