It is no secret that success comes from partnerships

Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft, once said, “Our success has really been based on partnerships from the very beginning.”

I look at how successful Northeast Mississippi has been in recruiting businesses and what makes us stand out against other areas in the state and  around the country, and the answer is “partnership.” Synergism is where the activities of a group working together exceeds the sum of the efforts of the individual members. This is hardly a secret in the favorable outcomes in business recruitment and retention in Northeast Mississippi, but it takes willing partners to make the accomplishments happen.

My company has been fortunate to be a part of some great campaigns that have come from partnerships.

We were given the opportunity to work with the Community Development Foundation, the PUL Alliance and Three Rivers Planning & Development District to brand the land that came to be known as Wellspring in Blue Springs. The result was the Toyota plant. We played a very small part in this, but we are proud to be a part of the team.

We have been honored to work with executive director Randy Kelley and his team members at Three Rivers. From concept to completion, we’ve worked on many campaigns for dropout prevention, adult basic education, youth summer job experience, assistance with promoting the Mississippi Department of Human Service’s campaigns through the Area Agency on Aging, and the Furniture Academy. So do you remember “Bling, No Bling”; “Talk to Someone Who Cares”; “Know More, Go Further”; “Hot Jobs”; “Summer Coin Crew”; “Mississippi State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)”; or “Mississippi Access to Care (MAC)”? The names might not be as familiar as the visuals. Getting the word out is important, and we enjoyed the work we did to bring it to the attention of the public.

Regarding the Furniture Academy, the key players in putting together the academy are H.M. Richards of Baldwyn; HomeStretch of Nettleton; Kevin Charles Furniture of New Albany; Max Homes of Fulton and Iuka; Southern Motion of Pontotoc and Baldwyn; the Franklin Furniture Institute of Mississippi State University; Itawamba Community College; Northeast Mississippi Community College; the CDF; and Three Rivers. My company was invited by Three Rivers to participate by aiding with the branding of the program by working with the partners to develop a name, a logo, advertising materials and putting together a news conference. Again, we played a very small part in the Furniture Academy, but we are pleased to be a part of a program that has such great importance for our community. We learned that within the first few days after the news conference and the advertising started that over 100 people had applied to be part of the Furniture Academy. This speaks volumes to the collaborative effort of all the parties that are working together to raise the level of the workforce in our area.

We are all more successful working with each other. The proof is seen in the good news that we read in the news. Not every story has a happy ending, but it’s small steps that move us forward and make Northeast Mississippi a great place to work and live.

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