December 6, 2012

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Sandy Chamber Gives Members a Peek at Its New BRC

Heather Stewart

December 6, 2012

On Wednesday, the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce hosted an open house to introduce chamber members to its new business resource center. While the chamber has long offered education and other services, it now has space dedicated to providing resources to small business owners and entrepreneurs.

“There are so many great resources available to the business community. We wanted to collaborate with some of them so our members—small business owners, corporate leaders, entrepreneurs—would become aware that these resources are available, and many of them are free,” said Jevine Lane, director of programs and the business center at the chamber.

The Sandy Chamber is partnering with Salt Lake Community College’s Miller Business Resource Center and Zions Bank to coordinate seminars and other activities, Lane said. The chamber can also refer entrepreneurs to contacts at Zions Bank for loan advisement.

Other community partners of the resource center include the Department of Workforce Services, Westminster College and Strayer University.

The chamber’s resource center offers free educational materials, along with a computer so members can “use the center as an office away from their office,” said Lane. An online learning center will be launched in January, according to Lane. This will consist of workshops that were held earlier this year and filmed for the chamber’s website.

The workshops cover topics like effective marketing strategies, social media, customer relationships and retention, IT solutions and emergency preparedness. And many additional workshops are planned for the upcoming year, said Lane.

The workshops are free for members; non-members are welcome to attend for a fee, usually $20.

The Sandy Chamber decided to launch a business resource center to help its members grow and successfully run their businesses, said Lane. “It was our job, and an important resource for our members.”

A key element of the resource center is the networking opportunities it provides. Lane estimates that at least 75 percent of the center’s activities involve a networking element. “Networking is a very effective, inexpensive way for small businesses to grow,” she said.

Networking and volunteer work are what brought Lane to the chamber originally. “I started out as a member of the chamber, as a business owner,” she said. She quickly became involved in chamber committees and mentoring other business owners. Lane joined Sandy Chamber staff in 2006.

“I do a lot of mentorship with our members,” she said. “I love business. I understand the heart of the entrepreneur.”

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