The Chamber of Commerce Idea
Most Chamber roots are in the ‘town booster’ type organization, meaning that the Chamber wanted to support its own community while competing with neighboring communities for trade, tourism, and economic development.
Over time, the Chamber’s concentration expanded to socioeconomic concerns, understanding that the health and vitality of the business sector is affected by the health and vitality of the community as a whole. It has been generally accepted that the role of the modern Chamber is two-fold: to support and promote currently established business as well as strive to attract and expand the current economic base (a shared effort with the City’s Economic Development department), and to support efforts to continuously improve our community through all avenues available.
Today’s Chamber can no longer ask its members, ‘What do you need from your Chamber?’ Instead, it is asking, ‘What kind of a community do we want ours to be?’ One goal of the Union Chamber of Commerce is to be proactive on issues, not reactive. We want to be known as a leadership organization.
Cities and towns are what their citizens make them. The Chamber of Commerce is an important vehicle through which the community’s needs are met.
What Exactly is the Chamber of Commerce?
A Chamber of Commerce is a federation of business,
industrial and professional firms and interested individuals working together
to enhance the economic and socioeconomic health of their community. They have joined together because they know they stand a better chance of getting things done when they speak as one voice.
It is a non-profit mutual benefit corporation that brings together forces, both public and private, to carry forward programs relevant to members’ needs and works effectively to make the community a better place to live and work.
The essential ingredients for an effective Chamber of Commerce are:
- a sound organizational structure
- a meaningful program
- responsible leadership
- a sound financial basis
The Chamber is not a social club, a charity or a division of city government. Although it is not-for-profit, the IRS code for mutual benefit organizations is 501(c)6 not (c)3 as a church or foundation would be.
As it works to improve our community’s economy and quality of life, the Chamber keeps these broad objectives in mind:
- to help business prosper and grow
- to increase job opportunities
- to encourage an orderly expansion and development of all segments of the community
- to contribute to the overall economic stability of the community
- to provide the means through which businesses and individuals work together to benefit the community as a whole.
The Chamber of Commerce exists to make a difference and help build your business. Our office disburses your promotional pieces in high traffic locations, provides business to business referrals, recommends businesses to customers, provides volunteer and learning opportunities, and offers free advertisement on our facebook page and monthly newsletter. Members of our local Chamber of Commerce are a highly reputable, are involved in the community, and use good business practices. We promote buying local by encouraging our community to spend locally and support the local economy. We strive to advance commercial and industrial interests in the community by working with other organizations with the same goals.
The Chamber of Commerce has been building the present, planning the future and preserving the past since 1928. De Soto is home to family businesses established as far back as 1868. We have three business districts located throughout the city: our historic Main Street, Rock Road, and Highway 21. We are also now home to several manufacturing companies. We have over 120 members yearly.