Vista 2025 Report Has Important Messages For Us

October 16, 2014

Via: Daily Local News

There are some very important messages coming out of a recent report from the Vista 2025 partnership plan and they are: don’t take anything for granted, don’t rest on your laurels and don’t assume that what worked yesterday is going to work tomorrow.

But fear not, all is not gloom and doom. Chester County apparently is in a unique position, one of which not many areas around the country enjoy like we do.

And according to the recent report, economic growth for Chester County is as dependent on preserving natural beauty as encouraging business growth.

The Vista 2025 partnership plan between the Chester County Economic Development Council and Chester County will help keep the county growing going forward, said Tom Filippo, co-chairman of the Vista 2025 Executive Alliance.

Business and community groups were interviewed to develop goals with the assistance of TIP Strategies of Austin, Texas. The plan released Tuesday at a meeting at Penn State Great Valley suggested goals and strategies for officials to consult over the next 10 years.

Jon Roberts, the principal at TIP, said the level of diversification of the economy in Chester County was unique in the United States, and has helped it weather economic problems better. He said, however, that officials cannot take that position for granted. Developing an economy was not just about job growth, but what kinds of jobs.

There was a chance of “getting this wrong” if the county followed a natural tendency of riding past success, and not stay alert to what got it there. That is probably the most important statement to come out of the report.

Roberts warned that the changes to the national economy from the last recession have changed some of the rules for communities to be economically successful. Not every current successful suburban area will be successful going forward, he said.

While county government has to continue to support Chester County as an attractive place to work, to live, and to raise children, it also has to continue to make Chester County a place that people want to come to, said Roberts.

Agreed. And that’s where many cities and towns have fallen down making the fatal error of not continuing to look forward.

For example, he warned that some parts of the United States are finding that office parks that were once successful are being abandoned by companies because employees find them too sterile and too difficult to get to.

To counter that, communities are starting to look at redeveloping office parks into multiple use areas, he said.

One thing that Chester County should do is to engage young people in both business creation and civic affairs, said Roberts.

The Vista 2025 plan is a continuation of planning for development off Chester County’s Landscape proposals. Those plans have emphasized preserving open space and encouraging development and redevelopment in the county’s urban areas.

But finding the perfect balance is the toughest part of the equation. And certainly the “looking forward” part isn’t easy. If it was we would never have suffered through any recession.

But this report offers hope and confidence that Chester County is headed in the right direction.

And for the half-million people who live here in Chester County that’s something to be proud of.

TIP Hired To Complete A Regional Workforce Study For Central Savannah River Region


By: Caroline Alexander, Senior Consultant, TIP Strategies

Image credit: Savannah River by AugustaGALiving via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)


The Savannah River Site Community Reuse Organization (SRSCRO) hired TIP Strategies to conduct a regional workforce study of the five-county Central Savannah River region of Georgia and South Carolina. SRSCRO counties include Aiken, Allendale, and Barnwell counties in South Carolina and Richmond (Augusta) and Columbia counties in Georgia. The study will provide a comprehensive overview of the region’s labor force as well as its strengths and challenges.

In addition to profiling the regional workforce, the study will offer a specialized view of the region’s primary industry clusters, their occupational needs, and training requirements. The study will build on the momentum of the Nuclear Workforce Initiative, a nationally recognized model for regional collaboration and industry-driven training.

Where We Went, State By State

October 15, 2014

Via: The New York Times

Last August, the New York Times released a set of interactive charts illustrating domestic migration by state since 1900. This series came to mind while we were thinking about talent retention and attraction. This tool, based on data from the US Census, charts state of birth versus state of residence of the US population for more than 100 years. Alternatively, you can view where people living in a state came from.

Understanding the migration patterns of a community can provide a framework for the design of a talent management strategy. Though state-level data does not lead directly to a detailed approach, it can help illustrate a state’s top talent “trading partners” and serve as a preliminary tool for recruitment. The flow of residents can also reveal patterns of economic change.

For example, comparing TIP Strategies’ two home states, Washington and Texas, reveal different dynamics of growth in each state. In recent decades, Texas has dramatically increased its non-native population, while simultaneously retaining 82% of its native population. Those who leave the Lone Star state are often drawn to other parts of the West and South. This is a change from decades earlier when Oklahoma was the primary target of Texas’s out-migration.

By contrast, Washington, like all western states, has attracted migrants for over 100 years. It retains a high percentage of natives–70 percent–but more than 50 percent of its population in 2012 was born elsewhere. Washington’s deep connection to the West Coast can be seen in the view of its diaspora which reveals that the vast majority of those who do leave the state remain in the West, a pattern which has held for more than 100 years.


Jon Roberts Speaks At The 2014 Missouri Governor’s Conference

October 5, 2014

By: TIP Strategies


Jon Roberts, TIP principal and managing director, was recently invited to speak at the Welcome Plenary Session of the 2014 Missouri Governor’s conference. His presentation, which kicked off the September conference, addressed issues specific to Missouri’s business climate and future growth opportunities. These issues were informed by a survey of conference participants.

Jon also addressed broader issues affecting the future of economic development, including a thought-provoking discussion of the ways in which disruptive technologies are changing the landscape of society, jobs, and business as we know it. The conference also featured Pulitzer-prize winning author, Thomas Friedman, as the Keynote speaker. Additional information is available through the links below:

Jon Roberts – Welcome Plenary Session Presentation [PDF]
2014 Missouri Governor’s Conference Media
Additional 2014 Missouri Governor’s Conference Materials