Last month, I shared my appreciation for IBM”s great advertising campaign, centered on the theme, "Stop Talking. Start Doing." because that same theme applies to the Gwinnett Chamber”s philosophy and corporate culture.
For many years, people have talked about creating a biotech corridor between Atlanta and Athens. Now is the time to "Stop talking and start doing." And, that”s where the Chamber and our Partnership Gwinnett strategy become engaged.
Last month, I talked about the Chamber”s support for the first critical objective – expanding our life science educational opportunities. This month, I want to talk about the recent creation of the Innovation Crescent Regional Partnership – a strategic coalition that includes the Gwinnett Chamber.
As the competition increases among states vying to attract businesses and jobs, Georgia recently created Work Ready regions to improve the job training and marketability of its workforce and drive future economic growth. Work Ready enables multiple counties to work together to demonstrate a trained talent pool aligned to a common, existing strategic industry cluster. The Work Ready Innovation Crescent region was formed to cluster North Georgia”s life science resources to grow existing companies and attract new investment. This region currently consists of the following counties: Barrow, Clarke, Clayton, Cobb, Dekalb, Fulton, Gwinnett, Jackson, Madison, Morgan, Oconee, Oglethorpe and Walton.
To support Work Ready efforts from an economic development perspective, the group was expanded to include local economic development organizations to create a brand marketing campaign for the life science industry within the region, resulting in the Innovation Crescent Regional Partnership.
The Partnership consists of regional leaders from local chambers of commerce and economic development organizations as well as Georgia BIO, the Atlanta Regional Commission, UGA Economic Development and the Georgia Tech Innovation Institute.
Over the next year, the Partnership is committed to engaging local, regional and state economic development organizations in developing a clear regional strategy to grow the life science industry. This regional strategy will complement and build on the state”s new life science strategy. We will also develop a unified message for this industry that differentiates the Innovation Crescent region as an internationally recognized hub of life science talent and research, and develop regional marketing materials that will be shared with all partners.
Success in this area means more high-paying jobs and more customers.
A strong marketing campaign combined with a skilled life science workforce is critical to our success. My advice for all of us partnering together on this great initiative comes from yet another great marketing campaign. The time for talk has passed. Let”s just do it.