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Membership Benefits



 

Networking

Providing networking opportunities to help our members grow their businesses is one of the primary objectives of the Burlington Chamber of Commerce.  Networking isn't just about having lunch or chatting over a glass of wine.  It's about sharing information, learning about each other's business and helping grow each other's business.  Networking can take many forms.  It happens at our events designed specifically for networking (like our Business After 5, our Business Before 9, or our Showcase events).  Networking also happens on our committees and at our seminars, it happens at our Gala and our Golf Tournament, and it happens when our members meet each other in a restaurant and on the street.  Networking is a very powerful way to grow your business and the Chamber makes developing relationships through networking easier. The Chamber works hard to provide networking opportunities for all our members.  Our Programs Committee designs and schedules events designed specifically to maximize your networking opportunities.  We even host seminars to teach you how to get the most out of networking events.  Our networking events are designed specifically so that you can meet suppliers, customers, new business-people and peers.

Business Education

The Burlington Chamber of Commerce is here to help your business grow.  Through our business education seminars you can learn new skills, stay informed or get motivated.  Our business seminars are organized by various Chamber Committees based on the needs and interests of Chamber members.  Seminars are always interesting, topical and affordable. All of our upcoming seminars are listed on our Seminars web page and we always keep members posted with our very popular eNews announcements.  Chamber members always receive a discount on seminar attendance fees.  Click here to see some of the most recent Chamber business education seminars.

Advocacy

A key objective of the Burlington Chamber of Commerce is to be an effective advocate for Burlington business.  The Chamber works on your behalf.  Our alliances with other Chambers and Boards of Trade, including the Ontario and Canadian Chambers, provide us with information and access to all levels of government.  We carry the collective and individual views of Chamber members to all levels of government to ensure that your voice is heard. Over the past few months, the Chamber has been active delivering your views to the City of Burlington, the Region of Halton, the Provincial and Federal governments.  Most of the Chamber's advocacy work is done by the Political Action Committee and Health Advocacy Committee.  Our Advocacy Page lists some of the advocacy activities of the last several months.

Business Referrals & Chamber Directories

One of the major challenges for most small or medium size companies is to continually grow and expand their business. Some of their growth comes from additional sales from existing accounts but in this area there are some limitations. When building new contacts that can materialize into clients two of the major criteria's are commonalities and a level of trust. By being a member of the Burlington Chamber these two factors are already in place. Active and new members have access to both information on the Internet with specific outlines of organizations and companies products and services and usually their key contacts. As well, there is a printed member directory. This easily available information can save the members valuable time and money in growing their business.  Additionally, the chamber office often receives phone calls looking for information about specific business.  The Chamber always refers Chamber members only.

"To have your company name become known is an ongoing process that needs constant attention. Companies spend millions of dollars yearly to promote their business and services by exposing their company name and image hoping to catch their potential client's interest. In today's market place we are continually bombarded with advertising and competition is ferocious. As part of the free advertising that is available to the members the Burlington Post will give your company exposure by printing your company name in the newspaper as a new member. As well you have an opportunity to write an editorial on a subject that would be of value and interest to its readers. This is part of the Chambers monthly insert in the Post. Why not be smart and take advantage of the free advertising for your company? Contribute to the readers and expose your company simultaneously."  Margareta Laffoley,  Creative Discovery and Associates

 

Employee Development

One of the major challenges for most small or medium size companies is to continually grow and expand their business. Some of their growth comes from additional sales from existing accounts but in this area there are some limitations. When building new contacts that can materialize into clients two of the major criteria's are commonalities and a level of trust. By being a member of the Burlington Chamber these two factors are already in place. Active and new members have access to both information on the Internet with specific outlines of organizations and companies products and services and usually their key contacts. As well, there is a printed member directory. This easily available information can save the members valuable time and money in growing their business.  Additionally, the chamber office often receives phone calls looking for information about specific business.  The Chamber always refers Chamber members only.

"To have your company name become known is an ongoing process that needs constant attention. Companies spend millions of dollars yearly to promote their business and services by exposing their company name and image hoping to catch their potential client's interest. In today's market place we are continually bombarded with advertising and competition is ferocious. As part of the free advertising that is available to the members the Burlington Post will give your company exposure by printing your company name in the newspaper as a new member. As well you have an opportunity to write an editorial on a subject that would be of value and interest to its readers. This is part of the Chambers monthly insert in the Post. Why not be smart and take advantage of the free advertising for your company? Contribute to the readers and expose your company simultaneously."  Margareta Laffoley,  Creative Discovery and Associates

Chamber Events

The Chamber host a wide variety of events (more than 75 each year).  These events meet a number of Chamber objectives focusing on networking, education and advocacy.  Most events are organized by Chamber committees.

BUSINESS AFTER 5 and BUSINESS BEFORE 9  Networking is one of the top reasons companies join the Chamber of Commerce so we have events that are designed specifically to give you effective networking opportunities.  Our Business After 5 takes place in the evening and usually sees between 150 and 200 guests.  Our Business Before 9 takes place first thing in the morning.  So, if you want to meet prospective clients and supplies, bring lots of business cards and come prepared to network.

"My first encounter with the Chamber was at a BA5 (Business After 5) meeting that another member invited me to.  I was impressed with the friendly atmosphere and the large number of local businesses who attended.  I picked up at least 20 business cards and felt the Chamber gave me a strong but non-threatening vehicle for networking.  The food was great too!  As a result of my BA5 experience I decided to attend BB9 meetings.  There I discovered a different group came out in the morning and was rewarded with several new business contacts as well.  Lots of coffee didn't hurt either."  Rob Wheeler, Sharp Electronics of Canada Ltd.

BUSINESS AWARDS GALA  The Chamber of Commerce Business Awards Gala is Burlington's premier business awards event.  The Chamber presents the highly coveted Business Excellence Awards to the year's top companies in the city.  BEDC presents their High-Five Awards, Tourism Burlington presents their Ambassador Award and Mayor Rick Goldring presents his community service awards.  The Gala has seen record attendance over the past three years.

"Lights Camera Action!  Every year the Chamber of Commerce recognizes business excellence in Burlington at the Business Awards Gala.  It's a stroll on the red carpet as the Business Awards Gala showcases the best in business that the city of Burlington has to offer. Preparation for a classy evening of cocktails, food, fun and entertainment begins early and nominations are made to the Chamber months in advance. Weeks of deliberation and interviews of the nominees culminates in the list of finalists being produced and announced on the Chamber website and in the media.  These companies are the best of the best; representing their industries and segments of business with the highest levels of customer service and business excellence. Gala tickets sell out quickly and the event has seen record attendance over the last few years. Sponsors are an important part of the event and ensure that the Burlington Chamber can host an excellent event each year. The business community enters the Gala in their best evening attire, thrilled to be in attendance at this special event. The Business Awards Gala sees the presentation of the Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards, the BEDC High-Five Awards, Tourism Burlington's Ambassador Awards and Mayor Rick Goldring's Community Service Awards. The Chamber Board Chair extends a warm welcome to our distinguished Mayor, the finalists, event Sponsors and all in attendance. The winners are announced, each receives a stunning award and has the honour to offer their acceptance and thank you speeches to an exultant audience. As proud members of the Burlington business community do your utmost to ensure that you are counted amongst those in attendance at this year's Gala."  Melanie Lalloo, Maximum I.T. Solutions.

SMALL BUSINESS CHRISTMAS PARTY     This event, launched in 2000, was created so that small- to medium-sized companies could have an easy solution to the challenge of hosting a company Christmas party.  The party created a tremendous atmosphere with hundreds of people enjoying a festive holiday event with other local businesses.

"As a small to medium size business owner, holding a Christmas Party to thank your staff can be a challenge. It's difficult, if not impossible, to host a dinner/dance with entertainment and prizes for less than 100 people. Let's be honest, dinner out with the staff and maybe their spouses at a restaurant can be a little boring. As a one or two person operation, Christmas can be a bit of a letdown without having a festive event to attend. The Burlington Chamber of Commerce has a solution to this challenge. Our Christmas Party for your Business (launched in 2000), was created so that small to medium sized companies could have an easy solution to the challenge of a company Christmas Party. Not only does our event committee take care of the details, we also create a tremendous atmosphere with the almost 300 attendees this event attracts. This event sold out three years in a row so that tells you what a great party it is! We encourage you to come on out and socialize with other small businesses like yours. You'll be glad you did."  Cheryl Stephenson, Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Limited

ECONOMIC FORECAST PANEL     Each year the Chamber hosts an Economic Forecast Panel.  What separates the Chamber Economic Forecast from all others is the unique makeup of our panel.  Our typical panel is made of an economist and a pollster.  This unique mix of speakers brings a unparalleled economic information to Burlington's business leaders.  The Economic Forecast Panel is usually held in January to kick off the Chamber's yearly calendar of events.

GOLF TOURNAMENT AND GOLF AFTER 5     The Chamber recognizes that business really does happen on the golf course.  To increase your opportunities to develop business relationships, the Chamber hosts a golf tournament each year and Golf After 5 networking events every week in the summer.

"Studies have shown that golf and networking are a perfect match.  Business leaders know that golf can be an important tool in business.  Spending time with clients and prospective customers  has the potential to return many times its investment in increased revenues.  Even restaurants and the client luncheon can't possibly surpass time spent on the golf course for effectiveness in client development and relationship building.  Imagine you had an opportunity to hold court with a prospective new customer for two to four hours.  Do you think you could learn something about that person in that time?  Do you think that they could learn important things about you and your business by having their undivided attention?  If you answered yes to either of these questions, then consider the Burlington Chamber of Commerce Golf After 5, and the Annual Past Presidents Golf Tournament.  Golf with clients and prospects is not necessarily about talking business, although it usually develops naturally as people spend time together.  What it is about is relationship building.  And successful business is built on solid relationships.  The Chamber Past President's Golf Tournament is a great day of networking that includes golf, cart, lunch, dinner and prizes.  You can enter as a foursome or as an individual and, best of all, you don't have to be a golfer to have a great time.  The Chamber's Golf After 5 takes place every Tuesday evening in June, July, August and September when Chamber members and their guests meet to play nine holes of golf, enjoy dinner and network. Take some time from your busy schedule and try these two Chamber only events."  Francis Mackan, Deloitte

CURLING BONSPIEL  The Chamber's annual Curling Bonspiel has very quickly become one of the most talked about Chamber networking events.  A great combination of curling, instruction, networking, gifts and prizes, the annual curling bonspiel has proven to be one of the Chamber's most popular events.  The bonspiels are always sold out weeks in advance and no one goes home disappointed.  What makes this event so special is that it caters to both curlers and non-curlers.

Business Showcase Tradeshow

A Business Showcase event combines our very popular Business After 5 networking event with a mini-tradeshow.  The Burlington Chamber holds three Business Showcase events each year.  Every Business Showcase gives members the opportunity to showcase their company's products and services to an audience of Burlington businesses.

"This is an excellent opportunity to showcase your company and the services you provide.  The Business Showcase event has given me a tremendous opportunity to promote and display my Company's products and services. The various locations chosen are excellent, display tables are set up with other new & existing Chamber Businesses and the event ensures that members learn about your business by visiting your table. My increased business comes from chamber members, and has already paid for our membership."  Karyn Williams, Duca Financial

Executive Roundtables

Chamber Roundtables provide a unique peer-to-peer resource group for Burlington manufacturing firms. They offer an opportunity for financial and operating executives to share experiences and information.  The two Roundtables operate on alternating monthly schedules; one group consists of CFOs and the other of Operations Executives.  All Roundtable meetings are completely confidential and topics are based on the needs of members.

Business, Community & Government Information

Being a member of the Chamber gives you access to a wide variety of vital business information.  The Chamber's online Reference Desk presents business, community and government information (and no Chamber information) and is the fourth most popular page on our website.  The online Chamber Library provides access to all Chamber polices, surveys, advocacy letters, and quick poll results.  Our online Communications Archive provides access to the most recent Chamber communications pieces.

Document Certification

Certain countries require a Certificate of Origin for exportation of goods.  Without the Chamber stamp and/or seal, some countries will not allow goods into their country.  The Burlington Chamber provides this service to help companies carry on business with other countries (not all Chambers provide this service).  Visit our Document Certification page for details.