Chamber of commerce
Apr 20, †Ј A chamber of commerce is an association or network of businesspeople designed to promote and protect the interests of its members. A chamber of commerce, sometimes known as a "board of trade," is. The Chamber of Commerce is a local organization that gathers business leaders working in the community. The intention is to advance the goals and interests of your organization and others operating in the area. Your townТs Chamber of Commerce can either be funded by the local government, a non-profit organization or both.
Misconceptions abound regarding many brands, products and organizations. The lack of understanding is in large part self-inflicted because chambers in various towns, cities, regions, states and even nations focus on what is the chambers of commerce things and actually chaambers in different ways.
A chamber of commerce primer may be helpful. It will be adapted based on input from chambers and others.
Download this document as a PDF. A chamber of commerce is an organization of businesses seeking to further their collective interests, while advancing their community, region, state or nation.
Chambers have existed in the US for more than two centuries, with many having been established before the jurisdictions they represent. A business-led civic and economic advancement entity operating in a specific space may call itself any number of things Ч board of trade, business council, etc. Chambers have other features in common. Most are ardent proponents of the free market system, resisting attempts to overly burden private sector enterprise and investment.
Local businesses are voluntary paying members of a chamber non-profits, quasi-public and even public sector employers also sometimes pay dues to belong. The board or executive committee then hires a chief executive various titlesplus an appropriate and affordable number of chaambers to run the organization.
In the majority of countries, the use of the term "chamber of commerce" is regulated by statute, though this is not the chambees in the US. Currently, there are about 13, chambers registered in the official Worldchambers Network registry. There are roughly 4, chambers of commerce in the US with at least one full-time staff person and thousands more cjambers as strictly volunteer entities.
Under the private, volunteer membership model, which exists in the USA and many other nations, companies are not obligated to become chamber members.
Chambers do not operate in the same manner as a Better Business Bureau or trade association, which can bind its od under a formal operations o and, thus, can remove them. Businesses and other employers pay dues to how to cook guyanese curry chicken and expect to receive the benefits of membership as long as they continue to invest in the organization.
They usually accept any reputable business thd a member, though dues what channel is the university of louisville football game on schedules can sometimes result in intended or unintended exclusivity. It is cuambers to note that in most cases it is the company that is the member, not an individual.
A member company is then encouraged to involve numerous senior level employees in the work of the chamber. A company is free to join pay dues to multiple chambers and many mid-size to large firms do so especially how to do a simple updo for short hairin order to further advance their companies' market or policy interests.
Dues amounts are typically determined by the size of the member company employee count or annual revenuerather than by the number of people engaged in the chamber from that company. Some chambers have adopted pay-as-you-go or funding models based on specific categories or quantity of services provided to member companies.
Adjoining organizations often establish formal or informal understandings about borders. Minority chambers Ч Hispanic, Commerec, Asian Ч exist in many larger markets. Just within the city limits of Chicago, there are more than 20 o of commerce and similar organizations. Even where a county or regional chamber has been incorporated and established over generations, there may be dozens of local and town chambers operating independently within that same turf.
Clmmerce are there so many chambers? Historical circumstances, population fluctuations, differing ambitions and the needs of employers have all played a role in the formation of chambers. At the time many chambers were established, geographic isolation underscored the need for separate organizations to represent local business and community issues.
While developments in infrastructure, transportation and communications over the past century have better linked businesses with their peers in neighboring communities and even foreign countries, the chambers that represent those businesses have remained viable and vital institutions. As suburban and exurban populations blossomed, new chambers sprung up to promote the interests of business in those communities. In some cases, a crisis such as a hurricane, or an opportunity, like attracting a rail connection or promoting an airport expansion, has led to the formation of a chamber that remains viable for decades.
New chambers have also been formed out of disagreements or disgruntlement about the direction, position or focus of an existing chamber. Like other businesses, chambers also dissolve and merge based on economic or other conditions.
Both the economic recession and increased focus on regionalism appear to be driving increased examination of the benefits of mergers.
The chambers in the US and Canada are not bound together under contracts or government regulations. There is no chapter or franchise arrangement between or among them.
There can be very strong relationships between neighboring organizations, but those relationships are voluntary and informal rather than required or written. Chambers interact with each other across the nation and the globe Ч many even maintain formal memberships in other chambers Ч but the network is informal. Local chambers are often, but not alwayspaying members of their state and national chambers of commerce. This connection is one of voluntary membership and does not extend to control or governance.
A significant number of chamber executives also choose to join professional associations of their peers, such as the American Chamber of Commerce Executives, the Western Association of Chamber Executives, State Chamber Executive Associations, or the World Chambers Federation. These memberships are for professional development purposes similar to those of any trade association and, once again, the relationships do not involve the abdication of self-determination. The most difficult aspect for the general public, media, government officials and even some businesses to understand is that there is whqt no inherent hierarchical structure in the chamber world.
This can be extremely confusing to those who naturally assume that a few thousand entities sharing the same name must be related and that some ordered lineage must exist among them.
That is simply not the case in the US. When business and economic policy priorities align, which is usually the case, chambers of all sizes attempt to work together and speak with a unified voice.
Inevitably, conflicting positions will arise about some issues, or about strong positions or lack thereof of chambers at various levels. To illustrate: The head of a community-based organization like a retired citizen group may wrongly assume that a position taken by a state chamber is shared and endorsed cojmerce their local chamber.
Likewise, a large metropolitan chamber of commerce could take a strong position in favor of an infrastructure project or educational reform initiative, which will not be embraced or supported by suburban chambers operating within the same metro region. Any individual chamber may take a very visible, contradictory stand on that same international visitor policy.
On certain issues at certain times, the US Chamber can organize thousands of its member chambers and associations into a unified grassroots lobbying force. They earn that privilege by attracting numerous and large heterogeneous employers to their membership and leadership, as well as by utilizing their collective voice on meaningful policy initiatives.
Even small organizations, however, take stands on regional issues ranging from school funding to road development. The processes of choosing and articulating specific policy positions vary by what is the chambers of commerce and issue.
For the most part, a vote or expression of consensus of a chamber board of directors determines the stand to be taken in the thw of that chamber on any issue. In recent years, with the increased involvement of public sector and non-profit employers in chambers, consensus-building has become more difficult at all levels. Chamber boards are independent, but they usually take into account the recommendations of state and national organizations when larger issues are considered.
The US Chamber and state chambers provide local counterparts with extensive background and adaptable sample documents. Likewise, local, regional and state chambers express their opinions about legislation specific to them, in hopes that their views will be shared, embraced and supported by others.
The American Chamber of Commerce Executives provides access to a Policy Clearinghouse, which enables member chambers to share knowledge about state and local public what does halloween stand for issues and strategies being employed in various regions to deal with those issues.
Because the chamber how much to eat a day is not structured around an affiliate or chapter model, such disagreements cannot be solved by a controlling authority. Sometimes the disagreements cause destructive friction which results in bonds between chambers being broken.
More often, chambers issue differing position statements and agree to disagree, knowing that the opportunity for cooperation on future issues will be critical for them all.
Chambers of commerce in the US operate almost exclusively as non-profit entities known as c 6 corporations. Unlike charities, these c 6 non-profits have the authority under state and federal tax rules to represent their members in public policy debates. They may lobby and take positions on actual or proposed legislation, subject to local, state and federal laws. The use of general fund revenues for chamber political and lobbying purposes is strictly regulated.
The chief executive or another member of the staff is sometimes a state-registered lobbyist. Chamber business models and organizational missions vary significantly.
Some chambers may offer services and products that appear to compete with businesses operating within their own territories. One group how to make a vine video youtube chambers may affiliate chaambers a service provider to offer discounts or other benefits to chamber members from low-cost office products to health insurancewhile another group aligns with a completely different vendor.
As a rule, larger chambers tend to rely less on membership dues revenue than their smaller counterparts. Virtually all chambers have revenue sources other than dues ; event income is the most common.
In many cases, these activities are subject to business income taxes. The chanbers purposes and rules related to such supporting foundations are different than those that have been established for c 6 organizations. NOTE: In a cimmerce cases, for-profit chambers have been established in some communities.
These business ventures are routinely commmerce and fought by traditional non-profit chambers. The largest metro or state chambers may employ up to people. The vast majority, however, have staffs numbering fewer than five ccommerce budgets under half a million dollars. Chamber professionals serve in jobs covering most of the disciplines found in other small businesses Ч communications, finance, marketing, customer service and event planning.
Some provide staffing and management to development-related government agencies on a contract basis. In all cases, the whole of a chamber of commerce is greater than the sum of its parts, programs, people and participants. In many countries around the world, membership in the chamber of commerce is mandatory under national laws, with fees collected under some part of the business permit or taxation process. Many of them boast memberships in hundreds of thousands, since literally all legitimate businesses must belong.
In the European Union and much of Asia, public law chambers are more prevalent. The government advocacy activities of these chambers are, of course, substantially different than those in the US, but many of the issues addressed by these public law chambers would seem familiar to chambers of commerce in North America Ч i.
The issues are similar, but the business models are dramatically different, since they have government-sanctioned status, rather than corporate identities. Many chambers around the globe belong to regional associations such as Eurochambres or the Mediterranean Chambers of Commerce. The World Chambers Federation ties a few thousand chambers from around the world together into one loose association, which operates under the auspices of the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris.
These organizations involve the American companies operating in these locales, as well as the local firms doing business with US firms. They focus on trade issues, but also on regulatory climates in the host countries. Looking to search the Samples Library? Click fommerce. Login MyAccount. Chambers of commerce What is a chamber of commerce? Chambers of commerce: the basics Misconceptions abound regarding many brands, products and organizations.
What is a chamber of commerce?
Your business has many ways to network within your community. Networking with other businesses and professionals within your community can strengthen the business relationships you have and increase the potential for more business opportunities that you can undertake. Attending a Chamber of Commerce meeting is a practical method to generate leads and sign clients that you can work with long-term. Read more: How to Grow Your Business.
The Chamber of Commerce is a local organization that gathers business leaders working in the community. The intention is to advance the goals and interests of your organization and others operating in the area.
They have the authority to vote on the board of directors that help create and implement policy. Check out the following steps to improve your networking skills when you attend the next Chamber of Commerce event in your area:. Begin researching different Chambers of Commerce to see who you can begin to network with.
You should be able to find a membership list online. This list has names of people that you may already do business with. Try to contact them to see what value they get from participating in these meetings. Once you arrive and sign in, remember that you want to keep your discussion cordial and focused on positive subjects.
Be sure to bring business cards to exchange personal information, so contacts can remember you. Make sure you move around the room through the course of the evening and speak with different people.
Each member has been influential in the business community, so you can get insight into their company and involvement within the community. Try to speak with 20 different people, so you can get a variety of perspectives and know which people you can get further information and business from. Be sure to thank the people who organized the event before you leave. Also, email the contacts you spoke with the next day to express your gratitude for the conversation you had with them.
The best way to network at a Chamber of Commerce meeting is to be professional as a representative of your business. The more people you speak to, the more you can talk about your company and contact the people you met during the meeting. You should join a Chamber of Commerce that you plan on being actively involved with. Please note that we are not your career or legal advisor, and none of the information provided herein guarantees a job offer. Skip to main content Indeed Home - For employers.
Post a job Find resumes Products. Help Center. Sign in. Find Jobs. Post a job. Find resumes. Visit Indeed for job seekers. What Is the Definition of the Chamber of Commerce?
Post a Job Are you a job seeker? Find jobs. What is the Chamber of Commerce and why is it important? A Chamber of Commerce is important for a variety of reasons, including: They promote small businesses: A Chamber of Commerce is focused on being an advocate for small businesses within a specific region. They can aid you with hosting an event that can drive more foot traffic and inspire other organizations to volunteer and participate in charity events.
In other words, they can help provide tools and resources to expand the outreach of local businesses. Increases the exposure of your business: Being a member of a Chamber of Commerce is a cost-effective marketing opportunity for your company. Read more: 7 Effective Skills to Help You Become a Better Leader How to network your business in a Chamber of Commerce meeting Check out the following steps to improve your networking skills when you attend the next Chamber of Commerce event in your area: Conduct research Participate in light-hearted discussions Speak with different people Follow up with contacts that you met with 1.
Conduct research Begin researching different Chambers of Commerce to see who you can begin to network with. Participate in light-hearted discussions Once you arrive and sign in, remember that you want to keep your discussion cordial and focused on positive subjects.
Speak with different people Make sure you move around the room through the course of the evening and speak with different people. Follow up with contacts that you met with Be sure to thank the people who organized the event before you leave. Last thoughts about the Chamber Check out these tips to find the right Chamber of Commerce to join: Find a local Chamber of Commerce in your area: You want to be a part of a local Chamber of Commerce, so you can grow your professional network and help the community.
Therefore, growing your relationship with your local community can build life-long friendships in addition to business opportunities. Some of these products may be insurance, supplies and software for human resources and accounting purposes.
See if they provide these types of discounts and other resources when you research them. What is considered the right Chamber of Commerce to join? Ready to get started? Post a Job.