Leadership Qualities: Sustainable Growth in Community …

Photo courtesy of Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Effective leaders harness the power of community to sustainably grow their businesses.

Many places struggle with record breaking temperatures this summer with temperatures reaching over 105 degrees Fahrenheit in Europe and the United States within the last 3 days (Fisher, 2019; https://www.forbes.com/sites/nicolefisher/2019/07/28/killer-heat-waves-what-to-know-to-stay-safe-as-records-break-around-the-world/#4f76b91d1cb3). One of the best ways to cool off and to relax is a trip to the beach.  The water and the constant ocean breeze makes it a winning pick for children and adults.  Walking or running on the sand also provides a great workout!  However, what about the garbage that has been floating up on many community beaches much to the dismay of beach goers?  

There is a community solution!  For just a few minutes out of the day, beach goers can get in some exercise and contribute to a clean community by filling a bag with garbage and placing it at a disposal site through the Fill A Bag stations located on the beach (https://nonprofits.miamifoundation.org/profile/key-biscayne-community-foundation-5).  With everyone pitching in, it not only cleans the beach, but it prevents the garbage from washing up on another beach elsewhere.  

Not, all businesses are non-profit, but all businesses start growing in and are sustained by communities.  In his 2019 address, U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO, Thomas Donohue, spoke of the issues affecting some 3 million businesses, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.  

“Selling Made in America goods and services to the 95% of the world’s consumers who live outside the U.S. is absolutely fundamental to our growth and prosperity as a nation. In fact, 49 of every 50 U.S. companies that sells goods overseas are small businesses—many of them could not survive without trade, especially in America’s heartland. Trade also supports some 35 million American jobs—a number that could dramatically grow, or shrink, based on our nation’s trade policies.”  


His statement has far-reaching implications for the Caribbean region as its most significant neighbor and trading partner.  Consider just a few stats from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the US Small Business Administration (2006; https://www.uschamber.com/work-entrepreneurship-and-opporunity-21st-century-america) about how companies facilitate sustainable growth in community:

  • The likelihood of selling to a new customer is 5-20% compared to 60-70% with an existing customer.
  • You are four times more likely to do business with an existing customer than a new one.
  • On average, US companies lose approximately half of their customer base every five years.

So, to ensure sustainable growth, effective leaders build strong brands that have a strong emotional connection with their customers.  This is best done through understanding communities and having satisfied customers.  

While you are investing in your mental health this summer, invest in a teen with Dear Little Brother, … or Dear Little Sister, … and more at http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/KeishaAMitchellPhD  and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=emOifCZt7dg .

Photo courtesy of Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash

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