Kennebec Valley Chamber

Serving the Kennebec Valley, Maine Region

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August 2018

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Friday Report ~ August 21, 2015

Phenomenal Cosmic Powers, Itty Bitty Living Space - I was at a dinner recently and seated at a table with some area business leaders. I’m not really sure how we got on this topic, but we started discussing memories we had of various lunch meats from our childhood. Several of us had mixed emotions when the topic of deviled ham came up. Most of us had fond memories of a good old fashioned fried bologna sandwich. One CEO actually laughed when he recalled the way it bubbles up in the middle when you cook it. The simple mention of SPAM erupted the table in laughter, and when someone mentioned liverwurst, I was immediately transported back to my childhood kitchen and flooded with memories of a liverwurst sandwich.

I had completely forgotten that liverwurst actually existed. How does that happen? Well, as you can imagine, my curiosity promptly got the best of me. I had to have a liverwurst sandwich. As my wife and I were discussing shopping list ideas for the week, I asked her to grab some liverwurst. You would have thought I had just told her I was moving to California to join a cult. In her defense, she has known me for almost 20 years and the phrase “please pick up some liverwurst” has never been uttered in our home. I held my ground and politely repeated my request to have liverwurst on the list.

Although I think she bought it just to see if I was serious, I had liverwurst in my fridge on Tuesday night. I am sure at this point in the blog that several of you are wondering how in the world this relates to business. Well, let me tell you. Brimming with pride and excitement about the possibility of reconnecting with my youth, I made a liverwurst sandwich on Wednesday morning and brought it to the office.

For those of you who have not had the pleasure of visiting the Chamber office, let me tell you a bit about it. There are 5 people working in a relatively small space. We have a running debate about when the A/C can be used, there is no such thing as a private conversation and several people have to walk through another office to get to their work space. While we are quickly becoming a tight group and everyone is always cordial, things change dramatically when you walk in and proudly exclaim, “I brought a liverwurst sandwich for lunch” to which I heard…

“Take it back outside”

“Open the windows now”

“You can run the A/C all you wish”

            It had not occurred to me just how my liverwurst sandwich would be received by the staff. Luckily, they did not immediately leave the building but a part of me thinks Debbie considered it. So the question to you is this: Do you eat at your desk? Do your coworkers or your staff mind? Are they vocal about it or is it possible they suffer in silence? Does your facility offer a break room where folks can enjoy a quiet lunch away from the phones and computers?

            The Chamber has no such space. In fact, we have completely outgrown our current location. This staff has operated much like the Genie in Aladdin when they have completed the amazing program of work that we do from this tiny space. This was evident on day one and I was charged by the board of directors to address and remedy our facility needs. Therefore after 6 months of negotiations, I am thrilled to announce to you that we are moving!

This morning we finalized the purchase of the former Unicel Building at 269 Western Avenue. This highly visible location, on a well trafficked artery of Augusta, will not only provide the Chamber with the space needed to continue to improve our services to members, it will also serve as a welcome center for the city and the region. We will be undergoing renovations for the next few months and hope to be in our new home by December. Many thanks to the Chamber Board for their guidance and support through this long process.

            So take a look at your own facility needs. Is it time for a change? Remember, there is no time like the present.