McLean County Chamber of Commerce President, Charlie Moore

Cornerstone Business Solutions has a long history of participation in the McLean County Chamber of Commerce and I’ve written past articles about the impact the organization has made upon my business.  So needless to say, the MCC is much more than a merchant services client to me, but a big part of my company’s success.

I was extremely excited to have the opportunity to interview the face of the MCC, Charlie Moore.  He’s just celebrated five years in his role as the President and CEO of the organization.  It’s been incredible the advances the organization has had in that time, with Charlie at the helm.  After spending this time with him, I realized that his intelligence and gift for eloquent communication is only surpassed by his passion for the business community here in central Illinois.  I was literally overwhelmed by these traits.  However bad my camera, editing and interviewing skills were represented, I believe his message and delivery are extraordinary in the contrast.

I particularly enjoyed hearing about Charlie’s successful path to the MCC as well as the organization’s strategic mission:  To support our members, the Mclean County Chamber of Commerce promotes local commerce, advocates business perspectives, creates relevant programs and establishes relationships for business success.

The time I spent with Charlie certainly renewed my own passion for the organization and I’m looking forward to finding ways more ways to contribute so I can get a closer view of where he leads this great organization in the future!

Robert McBeath is a Certified Payment Professional and President of Cornerstone Business Solutions.  Robert has extensive experience offering merchant services and cash advances to business owners. Visit www.CornerstoneBusinessSolutions.net or call him at 888.979.4731.

 

The Chamber of Commerce? What’s In It For Me?

makeyourmoneymeanmore

I vividly remember when the doors to Cornerstone opened on a shoe string budget in early 2000.  Money was tight, but within a month we found a way to cough up the investment to join the Chamber of Commerce.  At that time, we just knew it was the thing to do, and hey, we got a free ribbon cutting out of it, attended by the mayor!  Our fledgling business needed all the credibility we could muster and it was the only benefit we saw at the time.

Most people who have started a business know how tough it can be at times.  Hours before the ribbon cutting I used a good portion of our rapidly dwindling funds to purchase a cake and punch for the event.  As I was going over our books and seeing our projected income and obligations I was struck by an observation!  “Here we’ve invited the most important people in town for our ribbon cutting today, and we’re not even going to be in business a month from now!”  I said to myself!

Fortunately I was wrong.  I met a dear friend, Beverly Edgerton that was an ambassador for the McLean County Chamber of Commerce.  She convinced me to maximize my investment in the organization.  I soon learned that it wasn’t about what the Chamber could do for me, but how I could contribute to the business community.  Bev encouraged and mentored me and I soon was privileged to become an ambassador for the McLean County Chamber of Commerce as well.  When I look back at the early years in business, I believe it was defined by the relationships I made through my association with the MCC.  Of course my merchant services business grew dramatically as a result, but it’s the friendships and solid business relationships that were established that I’ll never forget.  To this day, my career highlight that has meant the most to me was being publicly honored at the McLean County Chamber of Commerce Gala event in January 2002.  I was surprised with the Chamber’s President’s Award for being the volunteer of the year in 2001.

Lately, I’ve seen more and more from the Chamber of Commerce working in many areas to continue to improve the community and the business climate.  What has particularly impressed me is their campaign to promote local businesses, “Make Your Money Mean More”.  That is particularly dear to my heart, as it’s the local small and medium sized business that are the foundation of my business.  Personally, one of my core values is to give back and support them.

What has particularly impressed me by the current McLean County Chamber of Commerce administration is that they aren’t just giving lip service to buying local.   Earlier this year MCC President, Charlie Moore contacted me to give me an opportunity to earn their business.  Working with their finance and operations manager, Scott Heape I was able to provide a better solution.  All things being equal, they chose Cornerstone Business Solutions over a much larger national competitor.  I don’t believe they knew how much it meant to me to have the MCC as a credit card processing client.

Ultimately my fourteen year journey with the MCC wasn’t about one client, however important.  What I learned along the way was what Bev Edgerton has said all along, “Givers gain!”  It’s up to the business men and women to contribute to the success of the Chamber as an advocate for the local business community.  As we’ve seen from the recent growth, when that investment of energy is made, all parties benefit!

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