Economic Development: Latest Trends and Hot Topics

I am attending the International Economic Development Council Leadership Summit which is always conducted with a special focus on the profession. The economic development profession is characterized by individuals who come from a wide variety of backgrounds, careers and professions. There are lifelong economic development professionals, but they almost always started somewhere else. The diversity of backgrounds makes it one of the most unique professions in the world. I have met former accountants, lawyers, engineers, salespeople, city managers and administrators, and planners. Even with all the disparate career origins, we all have one thing in common: an undying commitment to our communities and mission.
economic developers

Staff from the Partnership joined their peers at IEDC’s Leadership Summit in New Orleans.12208757_10153778936523606_2376229524155385584_n

We wake up every morning knowing that what we do that day may have an impact on someone’s life. Because of our efforts someone might get a job that could change the game for their family. Not every profession gets to say that.

At the summit we have learned that the profession is strong and the communities we serve are buoyed by our optimism and efforts. The annual state of the industry report also tells us that workforce development is one of the leading issues of the day throughout the country. Every community is faced with some type of workforce issue, whether it is the wrong skills for current employer needs or simply not enough workers to be found.

And, what does the report identify as the solution?

Listening.

We have learned that listening to employers throughout our communities and collaborating with partners like community colleges and other workforce groups often leads to smart solutions.

As we at the Partnership implement The Saratoga Strategy, we will keep listening a top priority. We’ll dialogue with Saratoga County employers through the upcoming launch of our Business Retention and Expansion program, learning about their needs and so we can best develop workforce solutions. It’s an exciting endeavor that we can’t wait to tell you more about… and, more importantly, listen to your feedback.
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