Tallahassee-Leon County is an asset rich community with a myriad of organizations, community stakeholders and planning bodies each with its own approaches that were directly and indirectly influencing economic development. Without a common definition of economic development and agreed-upon direction, the community found itself unable to make progress in job creation efforts. There was a need to align the stakeholders, strategic partners, public and private entities that impact economic development.
The newly formed Tallahassee-Leon County Office of Economic Vitality (OEV) retained VisionFirst Advisors to develop an implementable strategic plan that would allow the new office to grow while coordinating economic development efforts in a meaningful and measurable way. Throughout the course of the project, VisionFirst gathered input from more than 50 face-to-face meetings, strategy sessions, forums as well as an online community-wide survey that gathered more than 1,100 response. As a result, VisionFirst delivered a holistic five-year plan that included not only business recruitment and expansion tactics but strategies to facilitate business formation, technology transfer and commercialization as well as the creative economy – making the community more competitive for job creation and capital investment.
Once delivered, the Tallahassee Democrat Editorial Board noted, “…the strategy documents produced by Gray Swoope’s consulting firm VisionFirst Advisors are thorough, strategically driven and flat-out impressive.”