Reopening the U.P.
Posted by Lake Superior Community Partnership on June 2, 2020
What an unusual year it has been so far. Basically, most of us have ripped up our 2020 Strategic plans and started over! From an economic development standpoint, our time has been spent connecting with our businesses, providing appropriate services and resources, supporting local purchasing and be a “go to” for current and factual information.
Our good friends at Acuitas authored a blog post that really resonated with me. And I assure you that the word “chamber” is interchangeable with “economic development organization (EDO)” (yes, I asked them). They said “Right now, your chamber (EDO) is trying to figure out how to navigate complicated government processes and protect your rights so you can stay focused on keeping your business afloat. Chambers (EDOs) are talking to governors, state legislators, members of Congress, county executives, commissioners, council persons and any other person with a .gov email address, in order to convince them how important it is that the economy is not the antithesis of public health. Both can coexist safely and prosperously together. Chambers (EDOs) are your businesses life raft in the troubled waters of COVID-19. They were the life raft for you during the great recession and they will be again the next time a crisis rolls around.”
At the LSCP, we have all of our resources and program information on our website, Marquette.org/covid-19/. This includes various toolkits to assist you in your reopening and connections to local, state and federal resources. Additionally, don’t forget about the new Love on Local gift card program that we just launched with our underwriters to support local business
We are here for you as the rebound and recovery phases begin. It is our new “normal” and we are all learning. The LSCP felt that the steps to reopen the state via regions was very important. We understand that the current restrictions also make it difficult for businesses to be successful. So be accepting of their choices. From an opening perspective, we know that our businesses, our communities and our citizens will do everything to make the reopening a safe and enjoyable experience.
However, you as a customer, need to feel confident re-engaging with our retail, service and restaurant sectors. So do your research and plan ahead. Each business has specific requirements they need to adhere to. You as a consumer also have the personal responsibility to follow the rules. Be prepared to social distance, wash your hands, carry sanitizer and have your mask ready to use.
Let’s not forget, that we are all learning how to take the next steps. Our business community has had to adapt to the ever-changing landscape and, we as consumers, are adjusting as well. Will reopening be perfect? Heck no! But we can all be patient with servers, owners, employees and front line staff. There is no playbook for what we are experiencing so be the best person you can be as we move from phase to phase. After all, isn’t that exactly what we in the U.P. are known for?
As a “stay at home” remote worker, I have had a considerable amount of time to think about how we all turn this crisis into an opportunity and it begins with how each of us chooses to respond to the “new normal”.
For assistance, contact the LSCP Business Development Team at Marquette.org.
Amy Clickner, CEO, writes a bi-weekly column for the Mining Journal.