The formula is pretty simple: if you put in time at the gym and get your nutrition right you’ll see results – results in the form of muscles. The formula isn’t too dissimilar for economic development: facilitate new economic impacts that will generate the right type of fiscal impacts and you’ll get economic development muscles in the form of improved quality of life for residents. I may be oversimplifying things but let me ask you:
- Do you want to be a great economic developer?
- Do you want to break ground and cut ribbons?
- You wanna get shredded?
- You wanna get swoll?
- Do you even lift, bro?
You’re not going to have a beach-ready body in 60 days if you pound out 30 minutes on the treadmill and eat cake and ice cream everyday like it’s your birthday. If you want to spray tan your results and flex your economic development muscles, you need to stay focused on your workout AND your nutrition. That is to say, hustle and grind to get that new investment and new jobs AND be mindful of how this will produce new revenues and costs for your community.
Okay okay, if I haven’t completely lost you yet, what am I even talking about. We’ve probably all been there, you decide to get in shape so you start putting in some time at the gym but you just aren’t seeing the results you had hoped for. More often than not, the lack of progress is probably because you forgot about your diet. Once you get some consistency in in terms of activity and nutrition, you’ll turn the corner. In order to get your economic development equivalent of a beach-ready body you have to understand how the new jobs and investment will result in fiscal net benefits for the community. Focusing on just one part of the formula will leave you spinning your wheels and potentially racking up big economic gains with little revenue to provide the types of municipal services this growth will demand.
They often say that the key to weight loss is 75% diet and 25% exercise, the same can be said here for economic development, set your goals and let the fiscal impact guide you to economic development success.
Banner Photo Credit: FreeImages.com/Alan Eno