Editor’s Note: “The Economic Development Side” originally appears in the Pine Bluff Regional Chamber of Commerce’s weekly member e-newsletter. It is written by Rhonda Dishner, the Economic Development Alliance’s executive assistant.


It’s that time of year. Again. Already.


It’s the timeframe when the Alliance’s professional economic development team not only has to complete this year’s program of work but also must begin strategizing for next year. And five or ten years down the road.


It’s the time for intensive communications with ongoing prospect projects that might be close to a location decision before year’s end — or early next year or some specified date in the future.


It’s the time for reviewing the list of past projects. Seeking ways to revive those that might still be viable, or finally putting to rest a few that have grown cold and obviously never will pan out.


It’s the time to revisit marketing strategies to make sure the most decision-makers possible know about our community area and the assets it has to offer industry.


It’s also the time for a little internal self-congratulation as successes are noted, and then discerning how best to emphasize those successes externally in a way that’s not too prideful sounding. After all, the success stories of new and expanding industry is why we do what we do.


It’s that time, again. Time to plan for a new year. In addition to 2017 activity summary reports to be written, there are new goals to be set for 2018, new initiatives to plan and a new budget (!) to finalize. It’s nothing new, but the new possibilities are limitless.