Business people from across the Blue Mountains converged in Lawson last week to celebrate Small Business Month and talk about resilience.
Small business advocate Peter Strong was a special guest of corporate2community at the event, which was organised by BusinessBM, Springwood and District Chamber of Commerce, Katoomba Chamber of Commerce and Community, Women with Altitude and Blue Mountains City Council.
Opening the event on Friday night, Mr Strong congratulated local business owners on staying the course during the bushfires and COVID-19 and emphasised the importance of connections and networks.
“Local businesses are everything to communities like the Blue Mountains – we know when businesses thrive, so too do their communities,” said Mr Strong.
The morning’s ‘Do Tank’ run by corporate2community posed the question: How do we empower Blue Mountains small businesses in food, beverage and retail to thrive in the current era of disasters?
Led by national resilience experts, the two-hour session guided local participants in identifying the existing barriers to networking and participation for the Blue Mountains business community and brainstorming immediate and lasting solutions.
The business tourism session run by BusinessBM was one of the most topical workshops of the weekend, led by Mount Wilson local James Douglas.
The session featured Emma MacMahon from Dryridge Estate in the Megalong Valley, who shared her business tourism experiences with the group.
Ms MacMahon said the importance of her networks and local business community had been critical to the vineyard’s continuing success.
“Seven years ago, we didn’t know anything about the Blue Mountains and relied a lot on the support of other businesses – bottle shops, restaurants, bus companies and other local suppliers,” she said.
“And what goes around comes around and now we support all of them as much as we can. At our cellar door we sell lots of oils and honeys and chocolates and gin – all Blue Mountains produce. And that’s one way of supporting the community.
“It is good if you can keep it all local.”
corporate2community is reaching out to local businesses who are interested in participating in face-to-face and online sessions on developing business tourism as part of their revenue stream. People can register their interest here.