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Are you ready to say good-bye to 2021? Has it been a big win for your business or a struggle?

I remember this time last year being filled with excitement at the start of something new. It’s amazing how a new year can feel so filled with possibilities.

As 2021 draws to a close, we reflect on the challenges we faced this year. A year ago, we were firmly entrenched in a global pandemic with bright hopes that 2021 would bring an end to it. These days we are struggling with an ever-changing “new normal.”

But the pandemic has taught us all a lot about business. It has taught us flexibility and agility in meeting market demand. We learned how to be more creative in finding solutions and addressing customer needs. Safety became a top concern and friends and friends and family became more important than stuff. We also learned patience. None of the changes, adaptations, or new practices we put in place prepared us for employee shortages and supply chain issues.

Yet here we are, learning as we go, becoming stronger.

2021 was a bittersweet year here at the Chamber. We were heartbroken to see some members close and we celebrated to welcome many new ones. The Chamber hosted close to 40 webinars to help the community businesses master the skills they needed to excel such as social media, personal branding, and more. We talked about difficult topics through our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion program.

We reached out to businesses to see what they were struggling with and gave them a voice within the community to help them meet their individual needs through industry committees.

Our Chamber Foundation assisted 15 graduating seniors through the Inaugural Chamber Foundation Scholarship Program. The Chamber also hosted three signature events in addition to the golf outing. For 2022, we’re on target to do the same. This year’s golf outing will be a fundraiser for the Foundation to help it continue its valuable work within the community.

2021 has presented its challenges but it didn’t give us anything that as a community we couldn’t come together and find solutions for it.

We hope you have experienced the value in your Chamber membership. If there’s something you need help with, let us know. Our connections and voice can help you get the answers and assistance you need.

Here at the Alameda Chamber, we are wishing you a successful 2022 and are ready to help you in any way that you may need. Together we are stronger.

Happy New Year!