This Week in the Corridor
The Measurement is People
The conversation was with a senior executive. Her topic was obstacles to hiring. Her summary was compact and incisive: "Housing, childcare, and air travel, those are the reasons I lose people."

Here at the Corridor, we hear about these issues regularly, but this was the first time someone had tumbled them into a single sentence for me and stated so emphatically their importance. It was jarring, and it made clear the challenge. No, not to provide housing, childcare, and air travel, but to shift attention and efforts from jobs, jobs, jobs to continuous community improvement.

New technologies and a connected global economy mean jobs can go anywhere. Add in four decades of tax cuts and liberalized labor laws have leveled the cost of business from state to state (a few self-aggrandizing coastal cities excepting) and the old industrial park/tax breaks/cheap labor model of economic development is sliding toward irrelevance.

Our region is notable for thinking more broadly; the dual emphasis in our four counties on entrepreneurship and business retention signals that leaders here were never going to rely on outsiders to keep the economy growing. Yet today we are in a competition for the all-important business asset - people. Where the people go, the jobs will follow.

Thus it is exciting to see community-based coalitions springing up across the region to address a host of needs, from the aforementioned housing, childcare, and air travel to retail development, trails and parks, and beautification. The Corridor is occasionally a convener but more often simply a willing participant in these groups. Other organizations are specialized, we are generalists skilled most at building teams, setting visions and celebrating progress.

If someone were to ask me whether securing daily commercial flights out of Spencer, building a fitness and recreational facility in Storm Lake, or improving the aesthetics of the Arnolds Park-to-Okoboji bridge are economic development, I would tell them that they are community development.

And in this era when the only measurement that matters is people, community development is economic development.
Featured Real Estate
New Office Space - US 71 in Spirit Lake

Location: 3425 Highway 71
Spirit Lake, IA 51360

Lease Rate: $11

Square Feet: 6,040

For more information visit the Corridor website!
Around the Corridor
Alliant Energy recognized as a Top Utility in Economic Development

Site Selection magazine recognized Alliant Energy as a Top Utility in Economic Development for the second year in a row. The ranking is based on corporate project investment and job creation figures across each utility's service area and bases the numbers on population. In 2019, 30 Alliant Energy products occurred in Iowa leading to $797.65 million in capital investments and 1,467 new jobs. The honor places Alliant in the upper 1% of all utility economic development teams in the nation.

Iowa Lakes Practical Nursing Program ranked Best in Iowa, a leading licensed advancement and ranking agency, has named the Iowa Lakes Community College Practical Nursing Program the best in Iowa. The ranking is based on government data, exam passing rates, and program support of students.

Learn more about the ranking.
Outdoor recreation popularity continues to climb during COVID-19

To help cure the cabin fever caused by COVID-19, outdoor recreation has become a popular past-time, with outdoor trail usage increasing. Hunting, fishing, kayaking and other outdoor activities have also seen a participation increase this summer.

Learn more and check out information about outdoor rec resources in the region.
Seasons Center awarded $1,000 grant from Dickinson County Endowment Fund

Season's Center for Behavioral Health has received a $1,000 grant from the Dickinson County Endowment fund to support individuals and families in Dickinson county impacted by the pandemic.

Read more about the grant.
Dale Carnegie Course - Skills for Success

Who should attend: Professionals at all levels who wish to optimize their
                                      performance, lead with conviction and positively
                                      affect the bottom line.

Location: Historic Roof Garden in Arnolds Park, IA

Date: October 7th, 2020 (runs 8 consecutive Wednesdays)

Time: 8:30 am - 12:00 pm OR 1:00 pm - 4:30 pm (have divided this into 2 session so we can practice social distancing to keep participants safe)

Cost: $1,995 per participant includes all materials

Contact: Michaela Tamisiea
               Dale Carnegie Strategic Consultant

Learn more about the course.
Investor Spotlight
Each week we want to feature and thank the businesses and individuals that have committed to economic development and growth in our communities. To learn more about these investors and others, visit our Business Directory!
Sector: Manufacturing
Location: Storm Lake
Description: Meridian Manufacturing Inc. is all about solving industry issues with technology and a commitment to the highest quality. With a start over 65 years ago, Meridian has been developing storage and handling solutions that take quality and craftsmanship to a whole new level. With industry-leading designers and engineering staff, they have the capabilities to help design the right solution for customers' needs.
MWI Components
Sector: Manufacturing
Location: Spencer
Description: MWI Components specializes in products related to the post-frame building industry. They are the only supplier in the country of Metal Work's brand cupola and Ridge Vent roof ventilators, an industry leader for the past 17 years.
Jobs in the Iowa Lakes Corridor
Post your jobs where quality candidates are already looking:

See current job openings here.
Job Title
Convenience Store Clerk
Custom Applicator &
Maintenance Assistant
Custom Applicator &
Operations Assistant
Custom Applicator Trainee
Shop Leader & Custom
Police Officer/Law
RSVP Coordinator
Graphic Design & Marketing
MaxYield Cooperative
MaxYield Cooperative

MaxYield Cooperative

MaxYield Cooperative
MaxYield Cooperative


City of Spencer

Parks Marina





Questions? Want to be featured in next week's newsletter?
Contact the Iowa Lakes Corridor at,
or call us at 712.264.3474.