As active members of the California Association for Local Economic Development, we are always happy to volunteer our time for their professional development series. During the week of August 3-7, Senior Associate Suzy Kim and Principal Jim Simon co-instructed the Business Retention and Expansion (“BRE”) course as part of the CALED’s “ACE” Certification program, the highest-level economic development program offered in California.
Over the full course of a day, economic developers heard from over a dozen video interviews compiled by RSG around the core BRE best practices, as well as how various agencies around the state are responding locally to the COVID-19 economic crisis.
Some key takeaways we shared:
Communication with businesses is both a challenge and the greatest calling of economic developers today.
Facebook remains the most desirable social media tool to share your economic development activities.
Some agencies are employing new tools to improve the infrastructure around tracking business communication as well as operating hours.
The key steps in any survey and business visitation…and why BRE is so important even though there often is not a ribbon cutting to retain that business.
This marks the second year that RSG staff led this engaging course that involved ample opportunities for course participants to learn from each other, share ideas, and provide support in a time when so much is demanded of each of us. We came away proud to be part of CALED yet again, and grateful for the opportunity to support the economic development industry.