Former Secretary of State Colin Powell once said, “There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure.” Many local business owners and entrepreneurs who attend the Pitching the Shore networking group at the SouthShore Chamber of Commerce would agree with Powell.
“Anyone is welcome,” said the chamber’s executive director, Melanie Davis. “You can just show up, no RSVP needed, just come introduce us to yourself and your company. Tell us what a good lead would be for you. Every week there is a different creative ‘networking’ question that everyone has to answer. It makes for a fun time!”
The SouthShore Chamber merged two historic chambers in July 2011, combining Apollo Beach and Ruskin. The Apollo Beach Chamber was founded in 1985 originally as an all-volunteer welcome center. The Ruskin Chamber goes back to 1928 and was the very first chamber in Southern Hillsborough County.
The mission of the SouthShore Chamber of Commerce is to commit the chamber to grow through proper planning, new membership acquisition and servicing of existing members through value-added projects.
“Our chamber connects the business community to the needs of our community,” Davis said. “It’s a win-win for all. If your community doesn’t thrive, it creates a real struggle for your businesses to thrive.”
The Pitching the Shore networking event takes place every Wednesday morning from 8:30-9:30 a.m. at the chamber’s office.
“Anyone can show up; however, nonmembers only get one visit, then it is exclusive to just chamber members,” Davis said. “Most nonmembers have ended up joining right after because of the people they meet and the benefit they received from the meeting.”
Davis and the rest of the chamber hope this networking group is beneficial for all who attend.
“We hope we create an opportunity for our members to get to know one another more on a personal level as well,” Davis said. “When you leave that meeting, you truly know how it is that you can help benefit someone else’s business.”
If you would like to learn more about the SouthShore Chamber of Commerce or its Pitching the Shore networking event, you can visit the chamber’s website at www.southshorechamberofcommerce.org. The SouthShore Chamber of Commerce office is located at 906 N. US Hwy. 41 in Ruskin.