Georgia Chamber of Commerce talks economy in Macon
The Georgia Chamber of Commerce stopped in Macon Tuesday as part of its economy tour across the state.
MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — The Georgia Chamber of Commerce stopped in Macon Tuesday as part of its economy tour across the state.
Like many other states, Georgia’s economy has changed since the pandemic began.
One problem most businesses still face is having available jobs and not enough people willing to fill them.
Chris Clark, the president and CEO of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, says there are three things Georgia needs to do to continue to grow its economy.
“First is build the infrastructure of the future ones,” he said. “Diversify our economy, but the most important right now is winning the war for talent, so convincing people to come back to the workplace, getting people to transition from low-skilled jobs to high-skilled jobs.”
So what do local businesses need to change in order to fill those positions?
“Make sure that the employers that are in this area are offering flexibility, good benefits and higher salaries,” he said. “You also got to do a better job at working directly between the employers and the school kids we’ve got coming up in order to convince those kids in middle school that there are opportunities for them in middle Georgia.”
Asbury Stembridge, the owner and physician recruiter for the Stembridge Agency in Macon, says the healthcare field is one of the leading industries, but there is a lack of people applying.
“This is a major concern, because if we do not have the employees to meet the job needs, then we can’t produce,” Stembridge said. “And not only can’t we produce, we can’t provide revenue for the state.”
Stembridge agrees with Chamber leaders about the need to be more flexible in order to attract people into new positions.
“These people who like to have lives of their own as well,” Stembridge said. “They want to care for others, but they also want to have lives as well.”
Chamber leaders say Middle Georgia businesses need to keep three things in mind: diversity, equity and inclusion.