If you truly want to become involved, we suggest you join various Chamber of Commerce committees. Committees need your input. You probably talk to one hundred business owners and residential customers per week.
They know you, they trust you and they generally speak their mind to you. When these associates, business customers and business people talk to politicians, it's a more tactful type conversation. When they talk to Chamber of Commerce staff, they tend to also choose their words more carefully. When they talk to you, it's more point blank, to the point, blunt and the reality of the way they really feel. You'll never get a sugar coated answer to a small business dilemma from an actual owner. They'll tell you how they feel. Whether they are happy or mad about an issue. You also are the eyes and ears of the community with its residences.
When you come to these committees you bring knowledge. You will soon find your ideas, observations and personal opinion are paramount. You are the most valuable tool a chamber committee could ever hope to have.
However, you need to ask yourself, "Do you have the extra time?" If you don't, don't volunteer. There is nothing worse than a committee member who volunteers and then doesn't pull through when he or she is needed. If you have the time you will be repaid in new business contacts and customers and the feeling of knowing you made the difference.