Maidenhead & District Chamber of Commerce
Flooding in the Thames Valley - Maidenhead Chamber News Release
Rising water levels and flooding in the Thames Valley area is becoming a major concern for the Maidenhead and District Chamber of Commerce. Business is already tough in the current economic climate and the flooding is likely to have a major impact on some of the businesses in our area.
We are calling on Businesses to be aware of the issues and have plans in place for disruption, we would also ask residents and businesses to try and support businesses by continuing to trade or use local services.
Business Contingency planning is important, you should make sure you have a plan in place for flooding and be aware of the long term affect it could have on your business.
The local council and environment agency and providing assistance and advice to local residents and businesses, but please get in touch with the Chamber of Commerce if you need additional support and advice, we will pass this to the business community through our email service and LinkedIn and Facebook pages.
We would recommend businesses follow RBWM on Twitter as they are posting regular updates
Below are some useful links
Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service (RBFRS) updates and useful information;
Business Planning – Preparing your business for flooding Environment Agency Website;
Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead Council Flood Update and Information on Road Closures
Cookham Parish Council - have some useful information on their website;
Marlow Town Council, also information on volunteering to help flood victims.
Association of British Insurers offers advice on flood claims
MEMBER SURVEY – TRAINING & EVENTS
To: all members of the
Maidenhead and District Chamber of Commerce
From: Training & Education and Events committees
The purpose of this communication is to ask the members of the Chamber for assistance in identifying how best the Chamber can support members through the provision of Support and Education.
Your Chamber provides services in four key areas.
Representation – Identifying key challenges faced by members in dealing with local or central government and representing members’ views in order to overcome the challenges.
Information – Providing information to members on the on-going status of projects and key issues locally; helping members to take full advantage of constantly changing trading conditions and/or to protect themselves against impending challenges.
Support – Providing support to members when they are faced with challenges that they have difficulty in dealing with, particularly where such challenges have been dealt with successfully by other members.
Education - Identifying the specific educational and training needs of members and then providing a range of educational opportunities to members that enable them to learn new skills or update existing ones. Building the skill base of members in order to make them more skilled and more effective in their various roles.
There are a range of services that the Chamber can provide in the areas of Support and Education, and we seek feedback from members as to which options would be most beneficial.
What skills would you like help in acquiring? Please let us know the sorts of Support and Education that would be of sufficient interest for you to commit some of your resources to obtaining them. Below we have listed some possible examples, but feel free to let us know any other skills of interest:-
- “how do I use Twitter to attract customers?”
- “how do I get more customers to my website?”
- “how do I manage the performance of my staff?”
- “how do I improve the communications skills of my team so they sell better to my customers?”
- “how do I get PR articles published about my business?”
- “how do I improve my financial management skills?”
- “how do I use a webcast?”
- “how do I protect my idea?”
- “how do I get Merchandising right?”
- “how do I ensure I comply with Employment Legislation?”
What topics are relevant to your business that you would like to find out more about? (for example Pensions Auto Enrolment, Company Branding and Re-Branding, Employment Law, Health & Safety Law and best practice, Apprenticeships, Mentoring, Leadership and Management, Crowd Funding, Business Insurance requirements, Corporation Tax, Exporting, Importing).
Once we have identified the skills you want, we want to understand how you would want to obtain them. There is a range of options; from informal presentations through to accredited formal training courses delivered as a one-off or as a series. We recognise that some members will prefer one, others the other.
The educational opportunities that can be offered by the Chamber cover three broad areas:
Panel Workshops – Where the Chamber hosts a panel of experts in a particular discipline who present their own stories of how they have dealt with particular challenges that they have faced. Following this an interactive session for members to ask questions or provide details of their own experiences and challenges. This promotes the spreading of “best practice” in a fairly informal setting.
An Audience With – Where the Chamber interviews an expert in a particular field who presents solutions to typical problems that have been faced. Following this an interactive session for members to ask questions or provide details of their own experiences and challenges. This promotes the spreading of specialist expertise in a fairly informal setting.
Formal Courses – Courses of various lengths over several weeks, possibly preceded by short “taster sessions”. Examples of what could be provided include:
- Finance for non-financial managers
- Marketing for the non-marketer
- Choosing the right suppliers
- Closing the sale
- Profitable merchandising
- How to use advertising material
- Effective recruitment
- Training the workforce
- How to use Social Media effectively
- How to use Print media effectively
- How to use Electronic media effectively
- How to be a more effective retailer
- How to sell online
- The importance of effective branding
- Good practice in customer service
- Managing change effectively
- Communications skills
The examples above are just a few ideas. Please let us have any suggestions you have by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org by the 14 September 2013.
Chamber members have a lot of skills already. What skills could you help other members to acquire and how could you do this? (e.g. with a formal training course as a one-off or as a series, with an informal presentation, with an article, with a webcast, or with a practical “sitting with Nelly” demonstration). Let us know how you could help your fellow chamber members by emailing email@example.com by the 14 September 2013.
We have deliberately structured this communication to allow you to respond in free form, unconstrained by the limitations of, for example, a structured questionnaire. It is our hope that this will enable Chamber members to express what they want in terms of Support and Education. There is a lot that could be provided; please tell us what you value.
New proposed business waste collection service for Chamber members
Friday, 26th April
The Maidenhead Chamber of Commerce has been working closely with RBWM on a new business waste collection service with a view to reducing the cost of business waste collection for Chamber members. This enables us to utilise the buying power offered by RBWM working with the large shopping centres in the Borough to negotiate extremely favourable rates with waste collection service providers for all participants. In order to commence negotiations with the service providers, our partners in this venture require as much information as possible regarding the amount and type of waste being produced by businesses in the Borough. With this in mind we will be grateful if you could follow this survey link and complete the survey. This will also indicate your interest in taking advantage of this new Chamber motivated initiative. The more information that we gather, the easier it will be to negotiate much more favourable waste collection rates than you are currently paying.
If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact either the Chamber lead member on this project, Mike Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org or Terry Penhaligon at RBWM on Terry.Penhaligon@RBWM.gov.uk.
Maidenhead & District Chamber of Commerce looks to the future
Chamber Dinner & Dance, Fredricks Hotel, Spa, Restaurant – Saturday 2nd March 2013
Nearly 90 guests attended the Chamber’s annual dinner dance with special guests: The Rt. Hon Theresa May, Home Secretary & MP for Maidenhead, Cllr David Burbage, Leader of the RBWM, Sophie Christiansen, OBE, 3x gold medal winner in the equestrian Paralympics in 2012, Melissa Paulden, Marketing Manager, SportsAble, Amanda Gee, Chairman of Windsor Chamber.
In his speech, Mike Walker, coming to the end of his second year as president of the Maidenhead and District Chamber of Commerce summed up what the Chamber have achieved over the past year.
“What I believe has been key is partnerships. We have strengthened ties with RBWM, and I am pleased to see The Council Leader David Burbage and a number of his colleagues here tonight. Another key partner is PRoM, represented here tonight by Bob Dulson. The Maidenhead Town Partnership Chairman, Cllr Richard Kellaway is here this evening, MTP work tremendously hard to improve the heart of our town. Maidenhead is the ‘Jewel of the Thames’ of course, and MTP strives to renew its dazzle.
Amongst other activities, we have begun a project to connect with foreign chambers from similar towns to Maidenhead, again, with the help of RBWM. We have also begun and will continue to work within other business groups to present joint events.
We have stabilised membership numbers and introduced more robust accounting. As part of moving forward, we are in the final throes of incorporating as a company limited by guarantee. Apart from limiting liability, it protects the chamber’s identity, allows us to pursue and deliver larger projects and services for our members, and make it easier for our partners, such as the Royal Borough to work with us. But apart from any of those things, it’s a statement that we intend grow and move forward.
With the new structure and governance in place, communication will become a priority, both internally to our members, and publicly through better connections with the press and new media. I personally would like to see more of our members take an active role in discussions, projects and the coalface work of the Chamber. We would welcome new members the executive committee in particular.
We will continue to strive to work with other stakeholders such as developers, larger companies moving into the area, organisations such as the Thames Valley Berkshire Local Enterprise Partnership.”
Mike offered his personal thanks to all the members, and in particular the executive committee. Specifically, the Events team who have arranged an excellent evening. Thanks also to the staff of Fredericks for the service, and also their long standing support as members.”
His Pay Off Line: - “Slough has a big trading estate, Windsor has a big castle, but Maidenhead has a big future.”
Sophie Christiansen delivered an inspirational and heartfelt speech about the legacy of the Paralympics and the importance of sport for disabled people; followed by loud applause. Melissa outlined how SportsAble can help disabled people in the local area, several of whom are working towards the Rio Paralympics and asked for donations of time as well as money. The raffle in aid of Sportsable, The Disability Sports Club in Maidenhead, raised £600.
David Gordon-Smith of Donald Reid & Co. was presented with a cup by Theresa May for the work he has done on the incorporation of the Chamber this was followed by dancing to Disco Solutions until midnight.