In early 2023 the Leadership Council worked with Steadfast City to develop a strategic plan for Economic Development in Southwestern Illinois.
To view the full plan, click HERE.
After meeting with the Leadership Council’s staff, conducting an existing conditions analysis of the Southwestern Illinois region, and interviewing key regional stakeholders, the Steadfast City Economic and Community Partners team compiled the following recommendations and economic development strategies for the Leadership Council.
The plan includes action items and goals around the following six priority areas:
- Stakeholder Connectivity & Engagement
- Brand Identity
- Business Retention & Expansion
- Business Attraction
- Workforce & Talent Retention & Attraction
- Government Affairs
An increased emphasis on building the Leadership Council’s brand and the region’s brand through enhanced and consistent communications and marketing efforts can serve as a foundation for growing the organization’s membership and impact on the region’s business and industry. Developing key relationships with regional stakeholders, as outlined throughout this plan, can drive the organization’s efforts of creating a more connected region and providing support for existing and future business and industry. Creating a sense of place and identity for the region is critical for future economic growth and business attraction.
The Leadership Council should play a leadership role in executing business retention and expansion programs and government affairs initiatives, while providing support to other entities that focus on business attraction and workforce training. While the Leadership Council cannot carry out every initiative needed to maximize impact on economic prosperity in the region, the organization can provide the catalyst needed to connect regional leaders and create a more focused and collaborative approach to economic growth and prosperity. Our hope is that following this plan will enable the Leadership Council to increase its impact on the region’s economic and community success and growth.