Did you ever wonder why the economy in an area turns south, and doesn’t come back?
When the City of Lamar brought Neoplan into the area, they paid utilities, offered up land use, and made successions to bring in a big business that would pay a large number of wages, hoping the community numbers increasing would pick up the tab for the cost of bringing in the business. Local utility companies raised prices, taxes were reassessed on local residents, and many “costs of living” increases were spread across the population to pay for the cost of the Big Company coming in to bring “better jobs”. Local businesses were told to be sure and cut prices to gain a great customer, and many set up charge accounts so Neoplan could buy without paying for products used, and those businesses were run out of business, because they couldn’t manage the financial strain of paying for the big business costs, and carry the big business indefinitely on their accounts receivable. When Neoplan folded, local businesses were left to fold or survive as best they could, and the cost of doing business with a big business took a huge toll on the community.
In fact, Neoplan’s end of business left the community without jobs, without resources, and without sustainable population. People left town. And most of them won’t ever be back, not even to visit.
Bad leadership? Many of the leaders at that time have changed and there’s new leadership?
Perhaps the programs were faulty? Maybe there’s a mindset that needs to be changed, and people need to rethink their job, business, and marketing efforts in the area?
Perhaps the whole community needs to rethink their value, their efforts at building business, and their overall impact on the area. As an agricultural community, Lamar brings in a vast number of local events, including the county Fair. How about building on that basis, growing a bigger ‘community network’ and including agricultural interests?
With music, the area has developed a huge following of supporters and followers for the symphony orchestra located in Lamar, and people come from miles around to hear the orchestra play. How about setting up a more prominent marketing point for that?
How about encouraging local SMALL Businesses to develop and grow, instead of focusing so hard on bringing in BIG BUSINESSES?
How about supporting the local residents in their efforts, instead of discouraging them?
And how about applying some basic integrity to the standards set within the community, and growing businesses based on solid marketing plans and strategies that help local businesses instead of killing them economically?
Lamar, you have some vast opportunities to grow a community worthy of the heritage. Stop wasting that! Build strength and power from within.