During the past year, I believe we have all taken the opportunity to “reinvent ourselves” so to speak. In conversations with business owners, I regularly hear of new, innovative ways businesses throughout our community are adapting to better serve customers and clients during a pandemic. Change is difficult and I believe human nature is for us to resist change at some level. During difficult times, when faced with great challenges, I believe we are able to adapt when we are forced to make quick, decisive decisions. This is also our innate human nature.
At the Lincoln Independent Business Association, we have spent time focused on how we can do things differently and still serve and support our members while adding value to members. I am proud of the work of our team to find new ways to reach our members, support business, and help our community. The team at LIBA has embraced a greater presence on social media, finding ways to feature LIBA member businesses. Our weekly virtual lunches on Facebook are growing our reach and sharing the message of local business. We have been able to connect members with resources at the local and national level through conference calls, webinars, and of course Zoom. Our team was committed to making sure our office never shut down during the pandemic in order to serve businesses. We have refined our ways of communicating with members through e-newsletters and being more outwardly focused. During the summer and fall, we started hosting our events again and found creative ways to make sure everyone was safe and able to participate.
We as a community have continually stepped up to help fellow business owners. There are so many great examples in our community of stepping up to help others. We have adopted a bit of a new mindset about how we support local. Restaurants and bars have innovated in the way they serve us for dining in, carryout, and curbside or delivery. Some restrictions have loosened in order to help bars and restaurants serve customers and survive. This past holiday season, the stories of people in our community committing to buying local was inspiring for me. Day after day, calls after call, people were assuring me they were shopping local this year instead of relying on the convenience of ordering online. Those commitments from our customers will have a lasting impact as the business community reinvents themselves. The support for local business with gift card purchases through NebraskaBuyLocal.com was inspiring. I saw many of our own members opting to put their money back into our community.
I absolutely love being a Nebraskan and a Lincolnite! The way we come together to support one another is meaningful. Nebraskans adapting to new situations and “making it happen” is what makes me so proud to be a Nebraskan We are truly blessed in our work ethic, our commitment to getting things done, and helping our friends and neighbors. These qualities are why I believe we will all find a way to “reinvent ourselves” over the course of the upcoming year and together we will be a stronger, more vibrant community.
I tip my hat to the community of Lincoln for stepping up and working together to help our friends and neighbors. I encourage you to find ways to innovate how you are able to serve your clients and customers. This will make your business and our community stronger in the long run.
Thank you for supporting our local businesses! Together we are helping each other not only reinvent, but better ourselves and the community.