Business LF – the meeting
The interest in attending was such that the organisers are planning to hold a couple of extra meetings so as to get as much input as possible.
After an introduction of the Business LF concept by John Brædder and Stig Vestergaard where the budget was very briefly touched upon and the fact that this meeting was only to gather ideas was emphasised, we were divided into 6 workshops and asked to first of all decide if Business LF is a workable concept and then come up with ideas – using a ‘helicopter perspective’.
The worrying thing was that at our workshop there were only 3 members who actually have a business – and all 3 of us had invited ourselves. The others were employees of the 2 municipalities. And there were no mention of agriculture as a business and no representatives – 2 serious omissions in my opinion.
The meeting closed with a brief summary of each workshops findings, listed below. There was a complete consensus that Business LF is a good concept and that the islands should have been united in achieving common goals long since. The concept is planned as a society.
Main comments from the workshops – not in any specific order.
• Why 2 municipalities, 1 covering Lolland Falster would make economic sense
• No mention of very small businesses and their interests – should be taken into serious consideration
• No mention of the various grass-root enthusiastic activists who do so much to keep things going in the various villages – must be considered
• No mention of the agricultural sector!
• Need collaboration and cooperation between business and tourist workers to promote LF tourism
• Focus on wider market including Germany
• Business LF must be seen as an umbrella organisation which will promote the area
• The new incentive must be followed through and not end through neglect and indifference as has happened to so many other initiatives
• Must place emphasis on communication and information, openness
• Eventually include Langeland, Møn etc. in the project
• Carry out a knowledge audit to identify clusters and existing skills in the region
• Need much more advertising to get the region known – we are not good at praising ourselves, a change is needed
• The project must be realistic
• Improved access to the leaders of Business LF – at present it is very difficult to get any action
• Funding is important – what will happen to the various organisations that now will be closed to become a part of Business LF
• Why make it a society, why not make it a limited company?
All in all, an interesting meeting that shows just how much needs improving. I came away with the distinct impression that micros and other very small businesses have not been considered as yet and hope that our input will help. At least it was recorded.