Membership

Free (or Nearly Free) Training for Your Employees

150 150 Pat Monacelli

by Christina R. Metcalf

Brownie Wise (the saleswoman behind the success of Tupperware) said, “If you want to build a business, build the people.” This is incredibly important but now more than ever. With the hiring shortage going on, you must do something to make your business stand out and helping potential employees understand they can have a career with you (or at least feel valued while they are there) can be the difference between going with you or deciding to work elsewhere.

But how do you “build the people”? Training can be costly and who has the time or money for that? Believe it or not, there are a lot of free resources out there. Here are just a few:

7 Avenues for Free (or almost free) Training for Employees

To the best of our knowledge, each of these options is free. However, there may be a minimal cost with some specialized trainings.

If you want to check out a subscription course offering, there’s LinkedIn Learning. After your free month trial, there’s a $19.95 per month fee for unlimited access to their courses. Courses include advanced work on popular software like Office and Google as well as technical things like learning coding languages such as Python.

Assuming you want free (or nearly so), here’s a great list of options:

The Broomfield Chamber 
If you belong to the Broomfield Chamber, your member benefits extend to your employees. The chamber offers webinars, educational seminars, meet and greets, and lunch and learns. You can (and should) encourage your employees to attend these free or very low-cost ways to learn and get to know others in the community.

SBA and other Business Groups
The Small Business Association and other local business groups offer free training periodically. Sign up for their newsletters or check out their website to see what webinars are available. SBA also has free business counseling for you if you’re a small business owner. You can also check out the North Metro Denver Small Business Development Center.

YouTube
You may assume that the courses on YouTube would be conducted by fame-seeking teenagers but that’s simply not the case. There are a lot of good resources available on this channel. You could create a playlist of videos and share it with your marketing team/person, for instance.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
You probably knew by now that MIT offers free online classes but what you may not have realized is that it’s not all science related. They have plenty of business courses too. Check out the ones on entrepreneurship.

University of California has some solid offerings as well. Also, check out Open University for even more.

TedTalks
You might be surprised the kind of things you can learn in a TedTalk. While they may not teach direct skills, they teach ways to think and reframe problems that can be advantageous in a lot of roles. Your employees may also learn stronger empathy through watching a few of these.

Niche Sources
Make a list of what you’d like your employees to learn and then set them free to find no-cost instruction. For instance, there’s a course on supply chain management, corporate finance, and digital marketing. Some even come with certifications.

Ahrefs Academy
Lots of great courses here including SEO for Beginners (who couldn’t use that?) and several marketing courses. Good information that every business can use.

There are plenty of free training options out there for your staff. The difficulty is in giving them the time for professional development. Offering the courses won’t do you any good if they don’t take them, so make sure you communicate that this is an important part of your business. Your best employees will appreciate the challenge and the additional training. And best of all, it won’t cost you a thing!

4 Reasons To Get Involved with the Chamber Today

150 150 Pat Monacelli

By Christina R. Metcalf

Businesses join the chamber of commerce for several reasons. Years ago, it may have been expected; just something you did when you opened a business and wanted to be in good standing in the community.

But these days it’s more likely a business joins because there is a direct advantage to them personally. Maybe they wanted a ribbon cutting or need the advocacy or wanted a marketing opportunity that membership allowed them.

Yes, there are many reasons to join the chamber and tons of benefits your business can receive from membership. But aside from simply writing a check and receiving a set of benefits, there are reasons why you should become personally involved with the local chamber of commerce.

Plus, the chamber extends its benefits to all of your employees so you can use chamber membership benefits as employee benefits. Share this with them as well.

4 Reasons to Get Involved with the Chamber
Let’s place the advocacy, marketing, advertising, and public relations benefits of chamber membership on the back burner. This article is about what the chamber can do for you and your employees specifically, not the business. Yes, the chamber can bring more attention to your business, which can create more sales opportunities, but these benefits and this personal involvement are things that can help you outside of the business.

  • Education Opportunities
    The chamber has a number of education opportunities where you and your employees can learn about important matters for free (or at a very low cost). Chamber webinar topics may include things like diversity, how to excel in social media, and economic interests in your area. They can help you become a more well-rounded professional, change careers, or get up-to-date on important topics in the community.
  • Leadership Experience
    The chamber offers a lot of opportunities to volunteer for different committees or events. You may find a volunteer position in a subject that interests you like women leaders, diversity, workforce development, or marketing. Not only can these volunteer positions be added to your resume, but volunteering could also help you meet people with similar interests and help you grow your professional network. Speaking of…
  • Networking
    Getting involved with the chamber can help you meet more people and grow your professional network and make friendships. Even in communities where social gatherings are still mostly virtual, chambers have networking sessions to help you stay connected.
  • Business Expansion and Hidden Opportunities
    As you grow your network, you may learn of additional business possibilities that you could add to your business or you could use to launch a new one. You may learn of seed money, grants, SBA funding, or private opportunities. Often business deals get made before anything is formally published or requested. Being personally involved in the chamber may help you be a part of those types of discussions and make you aware of opportunities before they become public. The same may be true of the hidden job market. A contact may tell you they’re looking for someone before posting it on a job site, giving you the advantage.

Chamber benefits for your business are amazing. They can really help you increase your number of customers and get your name out there. But those aren’t the only benefits. If you get involved individually, there are many benefits to your professional growth and career. Plus, those benefits can be given to all of your employees too. That can be a real selling point for someone looking for a great company culture.

APPLICATIONS BEING ACCEPTED FOR 2021-2022 LEADERSHIP BROOMFIELD

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The Broomfield Chamber of Commerce is now accepting applications for the 2021-2022 class of Leadership Broomfield.

The goal of Leadership Broomfield is to build a sense of community by identifying individuals with the passion and commitment to become personally engaged in issues, programs and activities aimed at building a better City and County of Broomfield.

The program is designed to help attendees:
• define and enhance leadership abilities
• connect with local leaders in a variety of areas
• be exposed to the challenges and opportunities that face the city and county
• determine how to become more involved in leadership roles in the community
• build lasting professional relationships with community leaders

Leadership Broomfield features six monthly sessions plus a December mixer, running from September 2019 to March 2020. Each session focuses on a different aspect of the community, including quality of life, the nonprofit community, local government, and much more.

The application deadline is October 7. To apply for Leadership Broomfield, fill out our online application form.

BUSINESS/RESTAURANT RE-OPENING RESOURCES

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The Broomfield Chamber has created some images and signage that we our offering to local businesses to utilize in their re-opening efforts, and in their efforts to communicate mask requirements. Please feel free to use these in social media, or print for your windows or store-fronts. If you need PDF versions of the posters, please reach out to patrick.monacelli@broomfieldchamber.com.

The City and County of Broomfield also has a Blueprint to Reopening plan, and a Business Support Toolkit. You can find those resources here.

Let’s work together to make our community’s return to business successful. We are in this together, and we are Broomfield Business Strong!


Mask requirement graphics: Formats include png, 8.5×11 PDF and 11×17 PDF

Restaurant mask requirement

Mask Required Poster-Restaurant-Bar

Mask Required Poster-Restaurant-Bar-11×17

 

Store/Business mask requirement

Mask Required Poster-Store-Business

Mask Required Poster-Store-Business-11×17

 

Business Reopening graphics: Available as PNG files for use in social media, or to print as signs

       

     

BROOMFIELD CHAMBER, COMMUNITY FOUNDATION LAUNCH BROOMFIELD SMALL BUSINESS FUND

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Collaborative fund aims to help businesses rebuild as they re-open.

The Broomfield Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with the Broomfield Community Foundation, has created a new relief and assistance fund designed to help local small businesses recover from the COVID-19 pandemic closures and restrictions.

The Broomfield Small Business Fund will distribute cash grants to assist eligible small businesses that are or may have closed temporarily, are having financial difficulty paying business rent and utilities, and/or are facing staff reductions or cuts in hours due directly to COVID-19 related market impacts.

Apply for funding or donate to the fund here.

“Broomfield has long been a great place to start and grow your business. Our community is a strong supporter of small business and now many of them are at risk of permanently going out of business through no fault of their own,” Said Sam Taylor, President and CEO of the Broomfield Chamber. “This fund will offer a lifeline for those companies that need a little extra help as they reopen their companies after being shut down because of the pandemic.”

“The Broomfield Community Foundation is proud to support the Broomfield Chamber of Commerce and our local small businesses throughout the medium and long-term recovery period to get back on their feet. The Broomfield Small Business Fund provides an easy solution for local residents and corporate supporters to assist fellow Broomfield businesses in a much bigger way,” stated Marianna Williamson, Executive Director of the Broomfield Community Foundation, which will be managing the fund and distributing grants.

Businesses that receive grants can use funds on direct business expenses such as payroll, inventory, supplies, lease or rent payments for non-residential business premises, and utilities for non-residential business locations. Fund grants are intended to promote business success, resulting in employee retention, supplement business revenues for payment of expenses, and sustaining business activity in the City and County of Broomfield.

Contributions are still being accepted to help grow the fund. You can make an online contribution, or apply for funding here.  Questions can be directed to the Broomfield Chamber of Commerce at info@broomfieldchamber.com.

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