Embracing the 3Cs at Your Chamber

What are your tips for becoming a 3C Chamber?

Cynthia Vos
Executive Officer
Lethbridge (AB) Chamber

While revealing our 2018–2021 strategic plan, we showcased our new mission statement: “The Voice of Business” is a Convener for leaders of influence, a Champion for a strong community and a Catalyst for business growth to maintain a healthy economic and social environment in our region. This new promise reflects our fervently held belief that the well-beings of business and the larger community in which it lives are inextricable.

With the new strategic plan, there was a shift to having three specific committees that would reflect the change in the mission statement. The new committees evolved as the Convener Committee, whose members convene or meet with others; the Champion Committee, whose members fight or speak publicly in support of a person, belief or cause; and the Catalyst Committee; whose members serve as agents initiating change.

It’s the chamber’s job to provide the tools that businesses need to succeed. When we ask someone if they have heard about the 3C philosophy, it’s an easy phrase to grab attention, and it also makes it easy to quickly identify which “C” the member gravitates toward as a tool they are looking to engage.

Patrick Ellis
Murrieta/Wildomar (CA) Chamber

One of the best tips for becoming a 3C Chamber is to embrace what the 3Cs mean for your specific chamber and run with it. It’s crucial to make sure your staff, board of directors and key partners are all on the same page and incorporate the 3Cs into everything that you do. Every meeting, committee and event should trace back to your 3Cs. Then, remember to tell your story! At our chamber, we tell the story every week about the things we did to be a Catalyst, Convener and Champion for the communities we serve.

Anne Glasscock, ACE
Kaufman (TX) Chamber

We started by reviewing what we were currently doing to see how the 3Cs fit into our program of work. For each article that we write for the newspaper or for our directory, we indicate that our chamber exists to be a Catalyst for business growth, a Convener of leaders and influencers who make things happen and a Champion for a stronger community. Then we outline what we are doing that fits into each of these.

Additionally, in any advertisements that we’ve done in the past, we’ve replaced the language with the 3C verbiage. We shared the messaging with the board and followed that up with our planning retreat, which focused on being a 3C Chamber rather than a 3P chamber to get their buy-in. Recently, when our website was rebuilt, the 3Cs were incorporated into the site on the home page.

Jeremy Harris, ACE
Senior Vice President
Long Beach Area (CA) Chamber

Becoming a 3C Chamber is not just about branding or new signage. It’s about incorporating the meaning of those words into the everyday operations of your organization. It’s reciting the 3Cs in front of your board when discussing your annual goals. When speaking before elected officials and carrying out your advocacy efforts, it’s including those 3Cs. Your membership sales folks should be using 3C language during their sales meetings. Being a Catalyst for business growth, a Convener for leaders and influencers and the Champion for stronger communities will allow your chamber and mine to remain relevant and future-proof.

Lisa Krueger, ACE
Lake Havasu Area (AZ) Chamber

The 3Cs have become a part of nearly all of the Lake Havasu Area Chamber’s marketing efforts.

Our 2019–2020 Business Plan is entitled “Convener, Catalyst, Champion,” and each of our annual goals is tied to one of the Cs. Anytime we promote a project or program, both casually and behind the podium, we use the 3Cs to preface our message.

We’ve long been the Convener organization in Lake Havasu City. Our chamber chartered the Mohave County (AZ) Chamber Coalition back in 2002–2003; a couple years later, the mayors and city councils in Mohave County followed our lead with the Tri-Cities Council. Our chamber also created a regular meeting between city hall and the community’s economic development organizations that keeps us all in contact and up-to-date regarding policy and community issues.

Being a Champion for business is something chambers should be doing every day. We follow as many of our member investors as possible on social media—when they have a big day, we’re there sharing their posts or even showing up at their worksites to take photos and promote. We also work as a Champion at city hall and the state legislature, and even with the federal government from time to time.

We constantly work to improve our skills to become more of a Catalyst for change. We are working collaboratively with others in our community to create a cultural shift. This isn’t something that happens overnight, but we are making good strides, especially in the public education arena. We are working more every day for better workforce training with programs for local kids to explore careers here in Havasu, and on retention programs for educators so that we retain excellent teachers.

Our chamber is also an early adapter of “The Chamber Is” program; we created nearly a dozen ads using the other “C” words with amazing feedback from our membership and area residents.