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The Lake News Online
Sally Poole offers insights about business in Hannibal.
Hannibal Chamber Business Development Group update
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By Sally Poole

Sally Poole is the owner of Poole Communications, with offices in Hannibal, Marshall and Poplar Bluff, Missouri. She is very ...

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Sally Poole is the owner of Poole Communications, with offices in Hannibal, Marshall and Poplar Bluff, Missouri. She is very involved in Hannibal and Quincy, IL., with memberships in the Chamber of Commerce, Hannibal Arts Council, Affordable Community Education, Lions Club and Rotary. She has helped in the fund-raising campaign to build a Hannibal campus for Moberly Area Community College. Currently she is helping to start the Hannibal Chamber Business Development Committee.

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The Hannibal Chamber's Business Development group has met a few times now and we are looking at three main things:

1. Business Retention

2. Business Development

3. Business Recruitment

Business Retention - right now we are in the process of touching base with existing chamber members and existing businesses in Hannibal to explore their needs and the issues that are most important to them. This is part fact-finding and part chamber recruitment. We feel it's important to acknowledge existing businesses, make sure they are happy here and see what the chamber can do to help.

Business Development - this really means helping existing businesses succeed. The Chamber has been very proactive about bringing in seminars that help develop and improve business. The Great River Economic Development Foundation based in Quincy recently released the results of their business survey and it was very interesting. The top community strength was "Quality of Life," the top community weakness was "Workforce/Labor Market." The majority of the business owners projected employment needs and business growth would remain stable.

Business Recruitment - We have a good working map of our community and are in the process of dividing it up into sections for our team to make visits. We will build on the DREAM inventory of existing businesses and also inventory empty spaces. Then we are going to look at our market mix to determine what businesses we'd like to have in Hannibal. Finally, we will make contact with businesses that might be a good fit and invite them to Hannibal.

It all may sound fairly simple, but it really means a lot of hard work by a dedicated team committed to the quality of life and business in Hannibal. Here is a list of folks helping on the committee: Mark Grieshaber, Wendy Harrington, Norm Ellerbrock, Joan Atkins, Garry Allen, Mike Ginsberg, Sue Giroux, Corey Sanborn, Darren Redd, McKenzie Disselhorst, Tim Polley, Paul Ewert, Mary Glenn Bowman and Irene Meyers. If you run into them, tell them thanks for making our community a little better place to do business.

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