We have had the good fortune this year to work with companies that have chosen to locate and expand within the Columbus Region, collectively announcing thousands of jobs. We expect to end 2012 with at least a few more.
In the past, this would have been the time to congratulate ourselves and take a deep breath, especially after the election cycle and all that has happened in Ohio. But, we simply cannot afford to pause.
The possibility of a fiscal cliff, coupled with low expectations of Congress and the White House to solve issues quickly, are pressing down on economic development.
Global financial markets remain uneasy. Increasing costs and an unpredictable future have companies pausing once again when it comes to adding jobs and investing in technology and machinery. China, who we’ve become so interdependent with, has slowing rates of growth for the first time in over a decade. The next six months could be a wild ride!
The Columbus Region remains focused on what we can become in 2020, and we’ve made tremendous progress towards ambitious goals. However, we have a lot of work to do. We must:
- Prepare our workforce with the skills needed by industry
- Prepare sites and business parks for 21st century commerce
- Adjust public policies to the reality of new business models
- Nurture small businesses by connecting them with customers and capital
- Reach out to local industry to connect to local, state and federal resources
- Reach out to growing businesses and let them know we can help them thrive
- Connect globally to foster both trade and foreign direct investment into our communities
- Continue to find ways to leverage public/private partnerships to achieve what neither can do alone
If we pause for an instant, we will have dropped the ball. Let’s keep working to retain, grow, accelerate and attract jobs and talented people to the Columbus Region. It is the only thing we can truly control.
One Columbus Update
Thank you to our veterans. We encourage you to visit Ohio Means Veteran Jobs, and consider giving one of our great heroes an opportunity.
Congratulations to Whirlpool and Marion County on the expansion of 150 jobs!
Thank you to our investors for joining us for a discussion with Michael Duffy, Executive Editor of TIME magazine and a Columbus native. His insights post-election were quite fascinating, as is his book The Presidents Club.
Please mark December 7 for our next One Columbus investor update.