What do Tim Brown, Bob Weeks and Judge Phil Journey have in common?

All three of these Wichitans questioned Jim Clifton, Chairman and CEO of Gallup, during a recent SKYPE interview on KAKE-TV’s  program, THIS WEEK IN KANSAS. Mr. Clifton is the author of the book, The Coming Jobs War, and is the speaker at the Chamber’s Annual Meeting event that will be held on Tuesday, November 5.

Host Tim Brown asked Mr. Clifton some pertinent questions about his book during the October 27 program and then invited his guests, Bob Weeks and Judge Phil Journey, to pose their questions. The interview takes place during the last half of the program and you can view it on Kake’s website.  The interview begins at 36:33.

Some of the questions that were posed to Mr. Clifton are paraphrased below.


  • How can local organizations such as the Chamber work to create a better climate for entrepreneurs?
  • How do we spot good entrepreneurs?
  • When you talk about depressed workforces in your book, is that a symptom of the economy?
  • So how do you improve employee engagement and get it up to 50%?


  • Can you tell us how important momentum and hope are in developing an engaged employee?
  • Could you explain how important it is for us to create jobs in the U.S. compared to the world economy? Do you believe tax incentives and things governments do to create jobs are the right approach?


  • I’m curious about the early identification of entrepreneurs.  Is this something that government has a role in? Can government identify entrepreneurs? How do we do that? And if we can do that, why aren’t we all rich by investing in these early entrepreneurs?


  • How are you dealing with the transfer from land lines to cell phones for your surveys? How do you adjust your models to take those responses and put them into a larger picture?

Do you have a question for Mr. Clifton? We’d love to hear from you. Please forward your questions to communications@wichitachamber.org.

See you next Tuesday night!
Gary Plummer

                  This Week in Kansas - Oct 2013

Recap of Recent GWEDC Happenings

Last week your GWEDC team hit the trifecta of high-profile marketing events aimed at stimulating job creation and investment in the region.   All three events just happened to be in and around the Las Vegas area making this a very cost-effective week for promoting Wichita to specific targets.

CoreNet GlobalI attended the opening gala for the Corporate Office Real Estate Network’s Annual meeting on Monday, October 21.  This is the world’s leading corporate real estate event. If you are the VP of real estate for a large company this is the where you go to network with 2,000 of your peers and take advantage of continuing education.  We had a booth at the trade show depicting all the real estate solutions in the region with a special focus on the soon-to-be-vacant Boeing properties.

Aerospace & Defense Manufacturing Summit – Debra Teufel and I met with 24 aerospace and defense companies for 30 minutes each on October 20-21.  The general purpose of these meetings was promoting how companies can take advantage of Wichita’s attributes and we were pleased to uncover several recruitment opportunities. Our presence at this event was further enhanced by Paul Jonas, Director of Environmental Test Labs and Special Programs at Wichita State University for the National Institute for Aviation Research. Paul made a presentation at the summit about innovative partnerships and tailored solutions the Institute provides for the aviation industry.

NBAA – Coinciding with CoreNet was the National Business Aviation Association’s Annual meeting, October 22-24, with some 30,000 attendees.  Your GWEDC staff and seven partners worked a large booth at this event which is promoted as the world’s largest civil aviation show.  GWEDC was one of 1,000 exhibitors, including about seven states and cities pitching to this amazing audience.  We aggressively marketed for new jobs and investments to the business aircraft industry product, service, part, and manufacturers in attendance.


Our thanks to all of our investors and trade show partners for making these valuable marketing and recruitment opportunities possible.

Our local media provided extensive coverage during NBAA and the links below will connect you with some of their stories, photographs, and videos.

Tim Chase
GWEDC President

CliffsNotes on Clifton: Part Two

Best Take-Aways from “The Coming Jobs War” – Part Two

Every strategy about everything Wichita does has to relate to small-business creation and acceleration.

As promised, here are some of the best take-aways from chapters seven through twelve of Clifton’s book, to familiarize you with some of his ideas prior to hearing him speak on November 5, at the Chamber’s Annual Meeting.

Chapter Seven – Entrepreneurship vs. Innovation
The precious connector between innovator and customer is the almighty entrepreneur:  the person who envisions a value and a customer and then creates a business model and strategy that create sales and profit.

Chapter Eight – High-Energy Workplaces
Going from 30 million engaged workers to 60 million engaged workers would change the face of America more than any leadership institution, trillions of stimulus dollars, or any law or policy imaginable.

Chapter Nine – Customer  Science
Talent and relationships can almost always beat low price – they inspire customer engagement.

Chapter Ten – K-12 Schools – Where Entrepreneurs are Created
Student graduation is one of the most definitive predictors of your city’s future innovation, entrepreneurship, and subsequent job and GDP growth.

Chapter Eleven – Fix Healthcare or Destroy Job Creation
There is no single act of leadership that has bigger money implications than simply doubling the number of fit Americans.

Chapter Twelve – Global Wellbeing
America can’t lead the world economy without a disproportionate market share of the most talented people in the world. The next big economic city empires will rise up where the most talented entrepreneurs migrate and stay.

The next biggest job source is the approximately 5% of existing small companies that shoot up to big success. Cities have to create environments where this is highly encouraged, supported, mentored and celebrated. Every strategy about everything has to relate to small-business creation and acceleration.

Gary Plummer
President & CEO
Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce

CliffsNotes on Clifton: Part One

Best Take-Aways from “The Coming Jobs War” – Part One

As I mentioned in last week’s blog post, the Chamber has distributed over 300 copies of Gallup CEO and Chairman Jim Clifton’s book, The Coming Jobs War, to area leaders.

The 225-page book is a quick read that offers some interesting ideas for advancing job creation efforts.

I’ve summarized one of the best take-aways from the first six chapters below for those of you who won’t have time to finish the book before hearing Mr. Clifton speak at the Chamber’s Annual Meeting on Tuesday, November 5.

The highest levels of leadership require mastery of a new task:  job creation.

Chapter One – What 7 Billion People Want
Leaders of countries and cities must make creating good jobs their No. 1 mission and primary purpose because good jobs are becoming the new currency for all world leaders.

Chapter Two – Joblessness
Businesses with 500 or fewer employees represent more than 99% of the 6 million businesses in the U.S. with at least one employee.

Chapter Three – China’s Surge
When China’s GDP surpasses America’s, it will dominate the world economically by a margin far more than the United States currently has.

Chapter Four – Unless
If World War II saved the republic and democracy, the unforeseen technology-entrepreneurial boom that lasted from 1970 to 2000 re-saved the United States economically.

Chapter Five – Classical Economics vs. Behavioral Economics
Almost all new jobs are created by start-ups and small and medium-sized companies. Gigantic companies tend to decrease jobs. Mergers and acquisitions destroy more jobs than they create.

Chapter Six – Cities
Cities that create a culture that responds to innovation become a beacon for the most talented people in the world. You have to jumpstart your city yourself.

I’ll post some of the best take-aways from chapters seven through twelve tomorrow.

Gary Plummer
President & CEO
Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce

Input needed for Wichita Area Technical College (WATC) Accreditation Evaluation

WATC has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association since 2008. The College is currently seeking comments from the public in preparation for an accrediting evaluation in early 2014. Comments may be submitted on the Commission’s website by following this link. All comments must be received by December 31, 2013.


Hosting Chamber Executives from Across South Central Kansas

This week the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce hosted a group of 15 Chamber executives from across South Central Kansas. The group hadn’t formally met in several years. We assembled to discuss whether we should resurrect our regional group and begin meeting formally again.

We shared some of the challenges facing our communities and enjoyed learning more about upcoming events that our colleagues are planning to stimulate business growth. In a fairly short time we reached consensus that we would all benefit from quarterly meetings in 2014. Chamber executives from Wellington, Kingman, and McPherson graciously volunteered to host the group next year to exchange ideas and network.  The Wichita Metro Chamber will host the group during the fourth quarter of 2014 with a focus on advocacy and to discuss the upcoming 2015 legislative session.

This is a dedicated and talented group of people who are very passionate about growing their communities.We are all looking forward to learning “best practices” from each other about how to improve member services, retain members, build community with social media tools, and keep membership services affordable.

In 2014 we hope to attract more area Chamber executives to the group as we learn from each other about ways to strengthen the business environment in our own communities, and ultimately strengthen the economic viability of South Central Kansas.

Gary Plummer
President & CEO
Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce

SCK Chamber Execs

The Coming Jobs War – Book Review


Jim Clifton’s book, The Coming Jobs War, initially came to my attention when some of my Chamber colleagues around the country started discussing his research and approach to job creation. His message was resonating with communities that understood that winning the jobs war meant more than merely maintaining the economic development status quo.

Chapter Six appears about a third of the way through the book and it made the greatest impression on me when I had a chance to read through my copy of the book. The chapter stressed that the next economic development breakthrough will be “from the combination of the forces within big cities, great universities, and powerful local leaders.”

Wichita has all the right components for winning the job war. We have a unique entrepreneurial spirit. And we have dedicated visionaries who lead our local government, universities, companies, and non-profit organizations. After discussing the merits of Clifton’s book, our Chamber Board of Directors felt that his emphasis on local solutions and fostering entrepreneurship was the right fit for advancing our community.

The Chamber distributed more than 300 copies of the book to the media, elected officials, and local leaders during the 20012-13 Business at Full Throttle campaign to increase our economic development funding. Many of those who read the book were inspired to become investors and we were able to exceed our original goal and raise over $9 million.

Clifton advises that “your whole city wage a war for jobs. Everybody in charge of everything needs to focus on job creation.” Hearing Mr. Clifton to speak at our Annual Meeting on November 5, will  continue the momentum of our Business at Full Throttle campaign and help align our efforts citywide.

I hope that you’ll take the time to read Mr. Clifton’s book and join us to hear him speak about ways we can advance our community.  Follow this link for event and ticket information.

Gary Plummer
President & CEO
Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce


Celebrating Milestones With Our Members

There are few things as rewarding as celebrating important milestones with our Chamber members.  Milestone events help companies mark their progress in a very public way for their own employees as well as the rest of the community.

This year we’ve assisted with almost forty ribbon cuttings for Chamber members. We’ve celebrated new business openings, expansions, relocations, and anniversaries. Each celebration was the result of a great deal of dedication and work by local visionaries. These achievements were also essential components for moving our entire business community forward and inspiring others to consider making investments in our community.

Congratulations to all the visionaries and entrepreneurs in our community who have given us a reason to pause and celebrate in 2013. You’ll find a complete listing on our website.  And don’t forget to check our Facebook page for photos of these events.

We’d also like to thank everyone on our Member Relations Committee who has taken time out of their busy work day (and sometimes even weekend) to attend these events in support of their colleagues. Your presence at these celebrations reinforces and strengthens the value of Chamber membership.

If you have an upcoming event that you’d like us to assist with, please contact Kresta Dundas at 268-1115 or Nicole Robinson at 316-268-1116. We’re happy to help.

KNSS Issues 2013 Program – The Coming Jobs War

Who is responsible for job creation? What has the Chamber done to secure new jobs for the Wichita Metro area? Has Wichita been hit harder than other communities during the recession? What are companies looking for when they look at Wichita as a possible relocation site? Why did the Chamber secure the CEO and Chairman of Gallup as the speaker for the November 5 annual meeting?

Newsradio 1330 KNSS News Director and Morning Show Co-host Steve McIntosh poses these questions on his Issues 2013 program that will be broadcast on Sunday, October 6. McIntosh interviewed Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce Chair Debbie Gann and Chamber President Gary Plummer about the role of government and the private sector in creating new jobs for the Wichita metro area.

You can listen to the entire interview by tuning in to these stations at these times on Sunday, October 6:

  • KNSS (1330 AM) at 8 a.m.
  • KFH (1240 AM) at 7:30 a.m.
  • KFBZ (105.3 FM) at 7 a.m.
  • KEYN (103.7 FM) at 6:30 a.m.

Or click here to access the podcast.


The op ed piece in the September 29 edition of The Wichita Eagle, Local action needed in global jobs war, by Wichita Metro Chamber Chair Debbie Gann, couldn’t have been timelier. The front-page story of the same edition, Layoffs leave Wichita with a smaller workforce, was another sobering reminder that our friends, family, and neighbors have been suffering from job losses.

It is critical to maintain the jobs that we currently have in the metro area and develop a culture that fosters innovation and creates new jobs. The Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce is inviting community leaders, entrepreneurs, innovators, volunteers, educators, elected officials, and business leaders to become more engaged in developing a local battle plan for addressing this issue.

Attending the Chamber’s Annual Meeting on November 5 is a great place to start. The featured speaker, Gallup Chairman and CEO Jim Clifton, will share his insights into how we can jumpstart job creation in Wichita.  Printed invitations are being mailed this week or you can register here for the event.