Category Archives: Uncategorized

Save Small Business Coalition

As the Tigard Chamber of Commerce, we view ourselves as first responders to the Tigard Business Community. As we continue deeper into this time of uncertainty, the Chamber knows that the one thing you need right now to keep your business afloat is cash, period. To do something about this, we, along with over 80 chambers of commerce and business association, have joined the Save Small Business Coalition (SSBC).

Many businesses do not qualify for disaster loan programs and some can’t afford to incur additional debt. The SSBC believes that with a federally funded backstop to cover the business continuity expenses through defined grants to impacted business owners, insurance carriers and agents could potentially act as a distribution center for funds and likely help define the terms of the grants based on their experience as claims payors and policy writers. The coalition advocates that Government funding be provided to the insurance carriers for a streamlined process without adversely impacting the overall insurance safety net.

In addition to engaging the government, SSBC is seeking the collaborative support of not only Chamber of Commerce members across the country but many of the largest insurance industry associations representing carriers, agents and brokers. The faster all of these organizations can collaborate and work together to find a federally funded solution for small business continuity that can be dispersed immediately to small businesses, the quicker the vital heartbeat of the American economy can be saved.

Effective Immediately – Tigard Chamber In Person Business Networking & Programs Suspended Until April 10th

Dear Members and Community,

Out of an abundance of caution and concern for both our business community and our community at large, the Tigard Chamber staff and Tigard Chamber Board of Directors have decided together to suspend in person Tigard Chamber sponsored gatherings from now until April 10th.  This means Good Morning Tigard, Good Evening Tigard, Affinity Groups, Committee Meetings and Ribbon Cuttings will be impacted.

We want to do our part to help limit the future spread of COVID-19 and the impact to our health care and emergency service provider network, as well as those individuals with immune/compromised systems and our aging population in our community as we all navigate this unprecedented and uncertain time together. Given the number of people that come together at our gatherings in a variety of different sized venues, the social distancing of 3 ft between each person recommended by both the Governor and the Oregon Health Authority would be difficult to maintain, further supporting our decision.

In place of in person Tigard Chamber gatherings, we will be using tools and technology to come together virtually.  We are testing that capacity today.  Community and connection are important to our businesses and we are being creative in how we continue to provide that for our business community.

The event calendar will be updated with how to access business events virtually.  The Tigard Chamber will remain open and staff is available in person and online and will continue individual member connections. 

What can you do?

  • We encourage members to continue to have individual interactions to conduct business and build relationships. Referring each other is now more important than ever.  Together we are stronger.
  • We know our restaurants, bars, coffee shops, service industry and other retail establishments at a minimum are seeing a decline in patronage. Think of ways to continue to support them. Order for pick up if you don’t feel comfortable dining in, buy gift cards in person or digitally where available, patronize a variety of establishments to support each others’ business.
  • Reschedule versus cancel any large format events exceeding 250 people that you may be planning, this can help our economic recovery going forward.
  • Engage with us in our new virtual business building format as we roll it out.
  • If you are sick, please opt out of meetings and gatherings, take time to rest at home until you are well.
  • Replace handshakes and hugs with non-contact greetings.
  • Increase your digital and voice communications, stay connected with us and each other.
  • Read our newsletter and other digital communications as we work to keep you informed on things that impact business, including COVID-19.
  • Keep in mind that this is not forever, and we all need to do our part to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

We will also be testing and developing the ability for the office to go virtual should state and health officials change guidance for business. Until then, we are here, our members are here for one another, and we will continue to be building business and growing together.

On behalf of the Tigard Chamber Staff and Tigard Chamber Board of Directors

 

 

 

 

 

 

Debi Mollahan

CEO, Tigard Chamber

Tigard Chamber Announces Candidate Endorsements for Washington County Commissioner District 3

(Tigard, Oregon) – The Candidate Endorsement Committee (CEC) of the Tigard Chamber of Commerce, has determined its list of endorsements for the upcoming Washington County Commissioners District 3 position going to voters in May 19, 2020. The Committee consisting of local business owners, community leaders, and members of the Chamber Board of Directors came together to go through a non-partisan process to consider candidates for endorsement who align with the Chambers’ core values/mission, legislative agenda and who support public policy that strengthens the business community and free enterprise system.

“These decisions, while never easy, need to be made in order to move forward in the best direction for Tigard businesses. We looked for candidates who have strong relationships and a deep knowledge of our community and who would support collaborative, open communication and problem solving between business and government and have the skill sets needed to address the complex problems facing Washington County. We recognize how challenging running for public office can be and appreciate the drive exhibited by all the candidates.” said Tim McBratney Candidate Endorsement Committee Chair.

The Candidate Endorsement Committee for the Tigard Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce their unanimous endorsement of the following candidate for the May 19th, 2020 election.

Washington County Commissioner District 3: Roy Rogers

Roy Rogers has been a Washington County Commissioner longer than any other previous or current Washington County Commissioner.  Over his lengthy period of public service as a Washington County Commissioner he has focused extensively on the areas of transportation, workforce, housing and clean water, chairing and sitting on numerous regional committees focused on large projects and strategies benefiting Washington County. These committees include but are not limited to the Joint Policy Advisory Committee on Transportation (JPACT), Chair of Region 1 Area Commission on Transportation (ACT), SW Corridor Steering Committee and Clean Water Services Board. 

Within Washington County Roy serves on various committees and boards including housing and budget.    All of these focus areas and seats at the table are critical to not only our Tigard, but also our Washington County business community and economy.  Transportation networks are necessary and critical for commerce, education and more and serve as a backbone of how our local economy functions.  Skilled labor and housing for skilled labor is critical to business as is reliable affordable water and waste water rates.   

Roy Rogers brings a depth of knowledge and understanding to the complexities across these focus areas needed to help Washington County navigate projected growth over the next four years and we are pleased to endorse him for this position.

“We greatly appreciate all of the candidates that took the time to go through our confidential in-depth questionnaire and took time out of their busy schedules for our in-person interviews” said Megan De Salvo Chair of the Chamber’s Board of Directors. The Committee and Chamber agree that voters need to do their due diligence and cast their votes this November.

About the Tigard Chamber of Commerce

Our Mission:  Building & Connecting Businesses, Growing Leaders and Shaping Our Community

Press Contact Information:

Debi Mollahan                                 Megan De Salvo                              Tim McBratney

CEO                                                    Board Chair                                      CEC Chair

503-639-1656                                    503-567-7343                                    503-789-4515

Debi@TigardChamber.org           Megan@edge-one.com                              Tim.McBratney@pacresmortgage.com

2019 Tigard Chamber of Commerce Scholarship Recipients

The Tigard Chamber of Commerce (TCC) is pleased to announce the 2019 recipients of the Tigard Shining Stars Scholarship Awards. Each recipient will receive a $1,000 scholarship made possible by a generous donation from Pride Disposal, Metro West Ambulance and roughly 80 businesses who are members of the Tigard Chamber of Commerce. Applicants were judged based on career plans, extracurricular and/ or work activities, scholastic achievement and letters of recommendation. Please join us in congratulating the following students for earning this highly competitive scholarship:

  • Rachelle Diaz-Boyas, Tigard High School
  • Jennifer Hernandez-Botello, Tigard High School
  • Enrique Marshall, Tualatin High School
  • Sydney Oleson, Tualatin High School

Rachelle Diaz-Boyas has participated in her church’s choir for the last 5 years. She also volunteers at summer camps each summer and plays soccer for the club and school.  For work, she coaches junior league soccer and teaches Spanish to kids. While doing so, she has maintained a 3.2/ 3.4 weighted GPA.  Teachers describe her as kind, compassionate and tenacious.

Rachelle plans to go to a four year college and major in business with a minor in psychology. She would like to have a career where she can work in mental health and financial accounting. She will be the first generation in her family to attend college!

Jennifer Hernandez-Botello is an officer for the Mecha club. She assists in planning meetings, volunteers in the community and performs cultural dances at assemblies. She is also a peer tutor and has spent 450 hour helping students with disabilities in their classes and in the community.  Her jobs have included working at West Hill Health & Rehab, and most recently Starbucks. While doing so she has maintained a 3.6/ 3.8 weighted GPA.  Teachers and employers describe her as motivated and intuitive with a  great work ethic.

Jennifer’s ultimate goal is to open her own café shop. She is so passionate about this goal that she got a job at Starbucks to get relevant experience! After high school, she will be going to college to study business and then work to open her own business.

Enrique Marshall is part of the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA), Tualatin High School Advanced Business Procedures, Varsity Tennis Team, the high school’s newspaper, National Art Honors Society, Film Club, Homework Club, and the National Honor Society. All while working at Nordstrom and maintaining a 3.98/ 4.2 weighted GPA.

Teachers and counselors describe him as a natural leader, extremely creative, compassionate and inquisitive and highly collaborative.  Enrique plans to go to college in New York, NY at the Fashion Institute of Technology to major in fashion design and minor in Spanish and color studies.

Sydney Oleson is on the varsity track team. She is also in Key Club, Amnesty International Club, Health Occupations Students of America, Concert Choir and on the Concert Planning Committee.  She has been a Red Cross Blood Drive Coordinator executing a flawless blood drive at Tualatin High and Summer Youth Corps member. While doing so, she has maintained a 3.46/ 3.48 weighted GPA.

Teachers and the Red Cross describe her as self-starter, an excellent communicator with a passion to help others.  Sydney plans to attend a four-year university and receive a degree in medicine. This would allow her to serve the people who need health care the most. She plans to work overseas with Doctors Without Borders as a Radiologist working in humanitarian aid.  

Our congratulation again to all four recipients. These scholarships will be formally presented with other Tigard volunteer and business awards at Tigard’s 2019 Shining Stars Community Awards Gala. The event will be held on Friday, May 3rd from 5:30 to 9 PM at the Embassy Suites – Washington Square, our event location host. With a theme of travel, this elegant themed event includes a silent auction, dinner, dessert dash, awards and more. Tickets are $60 per person. Get ready to travel the world and join us to celebrate Tigard!

For further details about the Tigard Shining Stars Community Awards Gala, please contact the Tigard Chamber of Commerce at 503-639-1656 or at Jessica@tigardchamber.org, or go to our website at www.Tigardchamber.org.

Set the Stage for Success: Tips for Managing Client Expectations

Buddha said something like, expectation is at the root of all suffering. Whether you subscribe to that theory or not, you can likely agree that client or customer expectations can set the stage for a terrible business review. You see, excellent service doesn’t matter if they expected pizza at your Italian restaurant and it wasn’t there.

Since most customer expectations can be managed before they become issues, it’s wise to ensure everyone is focused on the same thing and the same outcomes. Here’s how you can make that happen.

Be Upfront About Policy or Inabilities

If you have a stringent return policy or don’t allow for substitutions, be upfront about that. Don’t hide it in small print. Make sure if someone is purchasing something that cannot be returned it is communicated in writing and orally. Also, ensure that your customer-facing employees understand the policy and why it’s in place. If they don’t, and a customer complains, they may very well jump on the complaint bandwagon and that’s bad for everyone.

This applies to inabilities as well. Several months ago, romaine lettuce was unavailable due to a recall. This severely impacted restaurants that serve Caesar salads. Unfortunately, many customers who knew about the recall didn’t think about that favorite salad. If you’re unable to deliver on something you normally do, don’t wait for someone to ask for it. Tell them ahead of time so you can manage their expectations before it becomes a major disappointment.

Implement a Client Onboarding Process

If you put a program in place that educates your clients on process and escalation procedures, they’ll feel more of a part of your company and will likely know what to expect. Communicating these things keeps your customers from inventing them, which is often far worse.

Provide a Reliable Schedule

Be very specific about when a client or customer can expect delivery but always build in a buffer on your end. It’s better to give them a schedule that’s one-day longer than they think it should take and deliver on time or before than it is to give them a date that sounds great but isn’t possible. Speaking of…

Under Promise and Over Deliver

This is similar to setting a date above. Don’t promise something you’re unsure you can deliver on. Many small businesses take on large projects hoping they can get it done. They plan on building a name for themselves with the new undertaking. But that fails to happen. If you can’t deliver on what was promised, you will make a name for yourself but it won’t be a good one.

Ask How You’re Doing

For the love of business, think twice before sending out one of those over-done, lengthy surveys. Keep your language fun and the survey short. Spend time on your subject line (if you’re sending it via email) so people will open it. Don’t ask every time a customer or client works with you. My vet sends me one on every visit even if I’m just buying dog food. That’s too much. I rarely ever answer anymore.

Better yet, use a fun, interactive survey. For instance, in your waiting room or lobby, use emoji magnets or paper faces to vote on how well they think you’re doing.

A Final Word About Setting Customer Expectations

While setting expectations and communicating limits and process are good things, know that most people are aware of the trend of customization that is affecting all industries. This trend is encouraging people to follow the once popular Burger King motto, “Have it your way.” With this change, you can expect that many of your customers aren’t going to like overly stringent return policies and other stipulations. Find the right mix of expressing policy and procedure with doing right by the customer.

It doesn’t mean you can’t have processes in place. It just means you have to empower your staff to differentiate between when the right time to set customer expectations is from the time to blow those expectations out of the water.

Christina R. Green teaches small businesses, chambers, and associations how to connect through content. Her articles have appeared in the Midwest Society of Association Executives’ Magazine, NTEN.org, AssociationTech, and WritersWeekly. She is a regular blogger at Frankjkenny.com and the Event Manager Blog.  

Christina is an introverted writer on a quest to bring great storytelling to organizations everywhere.