Can Do!’s primary tool for making Charlotte a more vital community is building relationships through networking. During this morning’s General Membership meeting, Laurie Lonsdorf, Senior Business Consultant with the Michigan Small Business and Technology Center–Capital Region presented a program entitled Top Ten Tips to Network Like a Pro. She provided a set of simple and useful techniques to develop and expand one’s network, whether one is new to the world of business or a seasoned professional.
Laurie has graciously made her Power Point presentation available to us so that we can readily refer to her tips before that next networking opportunity. You will find a pdf document with her slides here.
Our thanks go out to Laurie for sharing this informative presentation and to panel members Jeannette Sommer representing the Rotary Club, Rodger Carr from the Optimist Club and Connie Sweet of Women Connect for sharing information about the networking opportunities afforded by their organizations.
LEAP, Inc., President, Bob Trezise, visited Can Do! on April 25 and shared with us his vision for Lansing’s lead economic development organization, and his determination to maintain a comprehensive and collaborative strategy for regional growth. Mr. Trezise spoke about his efforts to build a top-notch staff at LEAP, and to tightly re-focus its energies on entrepreneurship and business development. He said that he expects LEAP to earn respect throughout the region by providing real and specific value to the local economic development community, and by fiercely representing the interests of Clinton, Eaton and Ingham Counties.
He detailed a list of important economic development assets the Lansing region has to work with, and a number of new strengths the region can capitalize on. These include Lansing becoming a major location for insurance company headquarters, and taking advantage of its growing expertise in worldwide logistics management. He also spoke about several important new initiatives, including a Michigan Avenue Corridor improvement plan, and a new BRT, or Bus Rapid Transit, system that he believes will finally solve issues related to mass transit in Michigan’s capital city.
Trezise also presented a list of ‘audacious outcomes’ that he believes are possible for the region to achieve by the year 2020. These goals can help provide the region with a vision of what Lansing can look like in the near future, as local economic development agencies work together to create a world class city.
Those who attended this morning’s Can Do! meeting spent an informative hour and one-half learning what is meant by the term “at-risk youth,” the challenge of meeting the unique needs of this population and the programs that have been established to address that challenge. Can Do! board member B. J. Behnke, assisted by fellow board member John Bailey, facilitated an interesting discussion among the six panel participants who provided us with insights drawn from their years of working with these young people. The panel members were:
|Bill Barnes||Charlotte High School Principal|
| Bill Callahan||Charlotte Chief of Police|
|Eric Emery||Relevant Academy|
|Becky Carson||Barry/Eaton CASA Executive Director|
|Bill Luxmore||Relevant Academy|
|Rosemary Anderson||Eaton County Youth Facility|
Panel members offered the following suggestions for how community members could assist at-risk youth on their journey to becoming productive adult citizens:
- Provide support for at-risk youth within programs that are already in place
- Look for opportunities to mentor at-risk youth
- Support law enforcement programs that work pro-actively to address the needs of these young people
- Teach at-risk youth “real life 101”
- Volunteer to work with youth; give them attention within one’s circle of influence
- Provide financial support for programs that address their needs
- Don’t miss the chance to do the little things, including showing signs of appreciation
- Hire at-risk youth to work in one’s business
- Involve them in community service.
Charlotte area residents will have an opportunity on May 8, 2012 to vote on a millage proposal to provide funding for operation of the Charlotte Aquatic Center and for certain other recreation programs. In an effort to further educate area residents about this important issue, Can Do! is making available the following documents:
Disclaimer: The availability of this information on this website does not represent an endorsement by Can Do! or its board of directors of the proposal.
During the Can Do! General Membership meeting held on November 22, 2011, attendees gathered in small groups to have conversations and share ideas that were inspired by the programs and presentations at other 2011 meetings. Participants recorded their thoughts on index cards. A listing of the various ideas, grouped by category, is available here.
What is to be done with these thoughts and ideas? This is where the strength of Can Do! really comes into play. Some of the ideas might be pursued by one of the existing Can Do! committees. Others might be taken up by another group or organization in the community. In still other cases, an individual might look for other like-minded people to form a new committee under the Can Do! umbrella and begin working to address the opportunity or issue.
Remember: Can Do! stands for Charlotte Area Networking for Development and Opportunity. If you see something on the list that interests you, use the Can Do! network to find other community members to work with you on that subject. That is what Can Do! is all about.