Q 1. Give our readers an introduction to your business. Include what your business is all about, in which city you are located and if you have offices in multiple locations/cities.

Ans : “Grand Lake Chamber is contracted by the town of Grand Lake to market the community to visitors, manage the Grand Lake Visitor Center, and to promote members through membership opportunities.”

Q 2. Give us a brief description about yourself.

Ans : “I am 32 years old. I have a Masters in Public Policy from Pepperdine University. I have a Bachelor of Arts in Women’s Studies from UC Riverside College. I have experience in the Mayor’s Cabinet for the City of Riverside Business and Education Initiative. And I have experience at Cerrell Associates (a Public Affairs Firm of Los Angeles) on Environmental Initiative.”

Q 3. What inspired you to get into this position?

Ans : “It was my love for the mountains that made me want to move up to the mountains. And when you are living in a rural town, you kind of have to look for jobs beyond your original scope, and this position was definitely beyond my original scope, which is Public Policy, and I was really able to plugin and see how I could grow the tourism of a community that I really love.”

Q 4. What three pieces of advice would you give to someone who is looking to do something like this where they can combine their passion and education.

Ans :

1. “First find what you’re passionate about
2.  Find a way to incorporate that passion into your daily life. So the thing I was most passionate about was the mountains, so I needed to find a way I can live and work in the mountains, and this was a great way to do that. And I think when you do that, you are happy.
3. Incorporate a good work-life balance. Plugging into non-profits in the community is not only a way to give back, but also a great way to get to know people and give you a rounded outlook on business, and also seeing what the community needs are.”

Q 5. What would you say are the top three skills needed to be successful in a position like this, a management or director position?

Ans :

1. “Communication is the number one skill

2. Being able to adapt your communication with different types of agencies. (Like Rocky Mountain National Park is going to communicate with me much differently than the Town of Grand Lake is. And the Town is going to communicate with me much differently than a member or business owner will. So making sure that you adapt your communication based on which audience you are working with.)

3. Having thick skin, because it’s a complicated position, and understanding that everyone has opinions about public positions. After all, life is what really matters, so don’t take it too seriously all the time or you won’t be happy!”

Q 6. How many hours do you work a day on average?

Ans : “A lot! I’m physically in the office 6 hours a day, but I check emails, respond to phone calls, and have meetings everywhere from 7 in the morning until 8 o’clock at night, so it just depends on the day. But I do have a hard cutoff time for myself at 8 o’clock at night, and I don’t look at emails until after I have my coffee in the morning.”

Q 7. To what do you most attribute your success?

Ans : “Persistence. Not giving up when one door closes; trying to see if there’s another door I can find, or a window, or a crawlspace. Just keeping persistence in the overall objective, because a lot of people stop trying after they hear the word “no” one time.”

Q 8. How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?

Ans : “Our website is our most successful form of marketing. It’s a monster, a beast, and has a lot of content on there that we really have been working to fine-tune to get our traffic going where it needs to go. Also, inquiring new visitors to the page, and making the page user-friendly. I see our website as the first window into Grand Lake before you are going to visit. And then our other online platforms, our social media is huge, and that’s really flowing since I started here, and that’s a huge compliment to our website because that is often also another first place people would look before they come here. And then lately this year, we have contracted with 3 different video agencies to have more video so people can feel more like they can interact here before they come here.

Also, the key to our marketing is our partnerships, because we have a small budget to work with, so really building on strategic partnerships with Estes Park, Granby, Winter Park, and grant-funding, which is huge to our company because we couldn’t market anything without grants.”

Q 9. Where does your organizations funding/capital come from and how do you go about getting it?

Ans : “Partnerships. Travel Board. The Colorado Tourism Office. The Grand County Tourism Board. The Town of Grand Lake. Ad Sales. Memberships. Sponsorships, Arts & Crafts Events Fees. Grant Funding. Operational Funding.”

Q 10. What is the best way to achieve long-term success?

Ans : “Continuously setting goals, and checking in on your goals. Here we set different strategic goals and report on those at the end of the year, and see how those goals were met. At the end of each year, we look at what we can improve on. Try to do a SWOT analysis every year, and see where we’re at. What are our strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats? How did we do on our overall objectives of the year? After we go through that we can be ready to plan for the next year. So, really holding ourselves accountable to year-to-year growth.”

Q 11. Where do you see yourself and the Chamber in 5 – 10 years?

Ans : “I see it as strategically growing, and really, the key to our growth is to stay true to the inherent nature of Grand Lake and growing in a way that is sustainable for Grand Lake. For us, we just added a 501C3 Foundational Arm called Outstanding Grand Lake, which is all focused on ecotourism and education. So really, figuring out how we incorporate all of the great assets of the area into ongoing marketing efforts that remain true to what the area is.”

Q 12. Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?

Ans : “I think there’s some great businesses that give back, and that’s what I enjoy, is a business that has a model for giving, and that has a built-in foundational program. I would say REI is a great one to look at. I admire how forward-thinking they are in their marketing, how they plugin with different community grants; I think that would be a good business to highlight. Another company is TOMS Shoes, because they give back shoes for each shoe you buy, and I enjoy any business that incorporates a sense of altruism with a business model.”

Q 13 . How important has your team been to the success of the Chamber?

Ans : “Hugely important! I couldn’t achieve anything without a strong team, so I think you’re only as strong as your team is, and you can only carry so much yourself, so having a good team is critical.”

Q 14. What motivates you?

Ans : “I would say the outdoors. That’s what motivates me everyday, and that’s what I notice that I’m missing, for example if I haven’t been on a hike in a little bit, I definitely am not as effective in everything else, not as effective at home, not as effective at work. So I need to be outside to feel motivated and to feel connected with myself and what I would like to achieve.”

Q 15. What are your ideals?

Ans : “My ideals are definitely growth, but a conservation-minded growth is really what I focus on. On how it takes to grow as a world and still take care of our planet at the same time and, down on a micro-sphere in Grand Lake, is how do we grow in Grand Lake as we also take care of the environment and water.”

Q 16. How do you define success?

Ans : “I define success as, well, there are your hard measurements of success, like how much is my website growing, how many followers am I getting on Facebook… all of those quantifiable results of success. But for me, success is much more qualifiable, and is more asking myself, “Do I feel like I’ve done my best job in all that I could do each day when I go home, both for myself and my family and now, for my baby?” “Have I done the best job I could do at being me that day?”

Q 17. What is your favorite aspect of what you do?

Ans : “My favorite aspect is definitely the people. I get to hear and learn so much about people and how they think, what their dreams are, how they operate, and it’s really interesting to work with such a diverse group of people from so many different backgrounds, as you learn a lot that way. That’s one of my favorite things about it.”

Q 18. What kind of culture exists in your organization? How did you establish this tone and why did you institute this particular type of culture?

Ans : “I definitely think our culture is that we support each other first, and we always support each other. It is a culture of optimism, of support, and it’s always been that we have to have each other’s back all the time, and we always do, so I would say it’s a culture of loyalty, and making sure everyone’s doing their best each day.”

Q 19. What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?

Ans : “My greatest fear in life is probably sharks! No, but my greatest fear is not having enough funding to achieve the goals we need to achieve, and that there’s so much room for growth and not being able to access that is always a fear, and always a frustration too, a real life thing that we work with everyday. Asking ourselves, ‘How do we continue to fund the objectives we would like to achieve?’”

Q 20. If you could talk to one person from history, who would it be and why?

Ans : “I would say Teddy Roosevelt, because of his connection to the park system, and the park system is really near and dear to my heart so to learn from him, and learn why that was so important to him, and how he would incorporate his vision into today’s parks. I think that would be very interesting!”

Q 21. Who has been your greatest inspiration?

Ans : “My greatest inspiration would be the women that have worked to break down barriers before me.”

Q 22. What book has inspired you the most? (OR what is your favorite book?)

Ans : “My favorite book is Into the Wild, and I think that really inspired me to get outside (not in a bad way, because that didn’t end up well for the character in the book), but I think that it really inspired me to go beyond a very metropolitan structure, which is what I was used to in Los Angeles and Riverside, and get outside more.”

 

Company : Grand Lake Area Chamber of Commerce
Address : 14700 U.S. Highway 34
City : Grand Lake
State : CO
Zip Code : 80447
Telephone No. : 970-627-3402
Toll Free No. : 800-531-1019
Fax Number : 970-627-8007
E-mail Id : glinfo@grandlakechamber.com