This month, I spent a few hours at the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation’s Annual Meeting hearing about the state of local business and industry. The venue was perfect – the Mack Truck headquarters in Allentown, a beautiful facility and monument to the fabulous industrial history that we enjoy in the Lehigh Valley.
Most importantly, we heard about the LVEDC’s strategic plan for growth. The keynote speaker, who led regional economic development efforts both in the Midwest and the Southwest, was inspiring – and left us with a warning. If the businesses in the Lehigh Valley choose not to step up and compete globally, he will be very happy to take the business from us and host new and growing businesses in his area. He threw down the challenge.
Of the five strategic goals announced by the LVEDC, he said the fifth presented our greatest challenge – to find both the financial and human resources to create our global economic advantage here at home.
Our Eastern PA chapter of ASTD members are working in local businesses, and in many cases beyond, to affect the growth and maximization of the human potential that exists in our companies today. For the Lehigh Valley to take up the challenge, and not send the business to the Southwest or Midwest where there are welcoming committees in place, we need to band together to find, train, retain and maximize the great human potential here in the Lehigh Valley.
We have a fabulous industrial history. Let’s have a fabulous future.