The Summerland Chamber of Commerce identifies key special projects for each year in order to provide maximum value to our members and funders. These special projects help to support our key strategic areas around tourism, member services and business retention, expansion, and attraction.
A “Business Walk” is an economic development initiative designed to provide information about the local business climate through face-to-face interviews with business owners. The format is very simple; over the course of a few hours, multiple small teams of 2 or 3 people visit a number of local businesses to ask some brief questions. In this way a large number of businesses can be contacted in a short time. Local leaders and volunteers visit businesses with the hope of gathering information to support the business community and to strengthen relationships.
On Thursday, October 22nd, Summerland Chamber of Commerce Board members teamed up with Mayor Waterman and District of Summerland Councillors and CAO to conduct our first Summerland Business Walk. In Total 115 businesses answered the questions. Seven teams met with 66 businesses face-to-face. An additional 49 businesses responded in the online survey sent out to Summerland Chamber of Commerce business members via e-mail.
As a follow up to the October "Walks", Chamber Board members, Mayor Waterman and District Councillors conducted the the second round of Business Walks on Thursday, April 14. The group split into 5 teams and met with 38 businesses face-to-face.
The Chamber Board members, Mayor and Council, and Summerland business owners found the Walks to be a positive and informative experience that achieved 3 primary goals:
• To discover the issues facing the business community
• To enhance working relationships between the Council/Chamber members and local businesses
• To provide local businesses with educational resources
We believe that the information in these reports can serve as a catalyst for changes that will enhance our business environment and also serve as a baseline from which future “Walks” will build.
To read a copy of the October 2015 report click here.
To read a copy of the April 2016 report click here.