Chamber Collective to Connect Chelsea and Saline Business Owners

By Seth Kinker,

The idea for the Chamber Collective, a joint venture that provides expanded networking opportunities through a series of collaborative events, began with the bouncing around of ideas in the middle of February.

A little over a month later, the first Chamber Collective event will take place March 27 at Salt Brewery in Saline. John Tripolsky, Executive Director of the Saline Chamber of Commerce, has been the driving force behind the event according to Monica Monsma, Executive Director of the Chelsea Chamber of Commerce.

“It’s something we are really excited to offer chamber members,” said Monsma. “It’s a chance to network with other business owners around the county. It’s great for members to expand their network, it strengthens our chamber when we have a broader network.”

“Our mission statement (at the chamber) is to position Chelsea as a premier destination to live, work, and recreate,” said Monsma. “Everything we do has to fall under that umbrella. To keep us as a premier place we have to support our business members. That’s why workforce development and networking is so crucial. If we can help our businesses grow it boosts our economy and helps all of us.”

The first Chamber Collective will be for Saline and Chelsea Chamber members only but Tripolsky told The Sun Times there are hopes to expand the Chamber Collective to include any chambers that would like to be a part of it in the surrounding area.

For the Saline Chamber of Commerce, it encompasses a large area; Lodi, Bridgewater, York, and Saline, but Tripolsky said he began to notice the same people at the same events. Tripolsky said he had always heard of people wanting more networking events and from his outside perspective coming from a marketing background, his thought was networking with the same business owners in your community wouldn’t help it grow.

“If businesses say, ‘oh that won’t help me,’ you shouldn’t be in business, as harsh as that sounds,” said Tripolsky on potential naysayers of the Chamber Collective. “You could be in business, a real estate guy, in banking, meeting new people is always good.”

As a Chelsea resident, Tripolsky said he sees similarities between Saline and Chelsea with both looking to continue to grow and reach more people with their businesses. His hope is to hold a Chamber Collective event every month or quarter depending on how things go.

“Six months or a year we might look back and go ‘oh this is awesome,’” said Tripolsky. “We can track back all these connections from people starting at this tiny little event.”

With minimal planning besides scheduling a date and finding a location, Tripolsky told The Sun Times that the response from Saline Chamber members have been great.

Down the road Tripolsky said that an event in Chelsea is planned as well with plans to jump around and hold Chamber Collective events in surrounding communities if there is the interest.
“Who knows maybe this is the beginning of a shift in how we do our events,” said Tripolsky. “Not just in our local area, maybe we always invite other chambers. It’s just about getting people out and about.”

Seth Kinker

Reporter/Digital Media for The Sun Times News

Leave a Reply