Business organizations only work with participation

Published 11:41 pm Friday, June 14, 2019

Here is a riddle for you: What is universally accepted as being critical to progress and growth, yet more than half the population all but ignores it?

Do you need a hint? Just visit a polling place most Novembers and the puzzle will clear up in a hurry.

Despite the fact we know our democracy is built on an engaged public who chooses its representation to form our government, voter turnout is always disappointingly low.

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If we are lucky, half of registered voters show up during the big years. That number plummets to the teens or slightly higher during primaries and off-year elections.

Although it is certainly on a different scale, the same can be said about local businesses taking advantage of the diverse offerings from business organizations like the Danville-Boyle County Chamber of Commerce, which is celebrating 100 years; and the Heart of Danville Main Street Program.

The opportunities are there but not enough businesses actively take advantage of the resources.

The Chamber and the Heart are doing their part to showcase the membership, create business connections and establish networks that can ultimately serve as a support system.

This is a great value to their members.

Danville and Boyle County are blessed with a vibrant and active organizations that feature a host of offerings like newsletters, luncheons, ribbon-cuttings, breakfasts, training, downtown events, educational workshops, networking platforms and much more.

These are all great opportunities to meet other business owners and operators who are facing similar challenges.

Many of the men and women operating small- to medium-sized businesses say they often feel tremendous pressure when making big decisions, not wanting to let their company or their employees down. The fact that people’s livelihoods hang in the balance is not lost on those at the top.

Many say they feel very isolated and without support.

Whether you run a specialty boutique or service companies to manufacturing industry, common threads exist when it comes to a business being successful. Leaders of these diverse segments of the business community don’t always have opportunities to get together and discuss shared challenges.

That is an area where business organizations like the Chamber and the Heart can have a profound impact.

It is also important that business owners and operators know who is in the market and what products and services they offer. Spending money with other local businesses is a win for everyone.

Now is the perfect time to get involved. Reach out to these organizations for more information.

If we all support one another, collectively, there is no limit to what we can build in our community. There is nothing puzzling about that.

Michael Caldwell is publisher of The Advocate-Messenger and Danville Living magazine. He can be reached at (859) 469-6400 or by email at