City Planning Commission Prepares For Strategy Session

The Jamestown Strategic Planning and Partnerships Commission is planning a strategy session with an expert management educator and author.

On Thursday, the group of volunteers who meet throughout the year to discuss various methods of improving life in the community talked about bringing back Russ Linden. Linden is an expert in change management, performance improvement and collaboration. He has written five books, with his most recent being ”Leading Across Boundaries: Creating Collaborative Agencies in a Networked World.” Linden has included work he has done with Chautauqua County officials in previous books like ”Working Across Boundaries: Making Collaboration Work In Government and NonProfit Organizations.”

His clients have included several intelligence, natural resource and defense agencies; the Departments of State, Treasury, Interior, Veterans Affairs and Education; more than 40 state and local government agencies; and nonprofits in the U.S. and Israel.

The commission said they have asked Linden in the past to help with local development projects. The last time he spoke to the group was in 2008. Jennifer Gibson, Strategic Planning and Partnership Commission co-chair, said Linden would be available for the strategy session in March. The commission discussed who should be invited locally to the strategy session and that the focus should be on economic development dealing with workforce creation and retention.

Linda Swanson, Jamestown Strategic Planning and Partnerships Commission member, said prior to the meeting, the commission needs to define what specifically they want from the meeting and how to follow through on what is planned.

The group talked about past economic development successes, like bringing in The Connection, which is a call center located in the Furniture Mart Building, 111 W. Second St., Jamestown. Finding the right business to locate in Jamestown was part of a plan that took about two years, and included hiring a marketer to find the right company. Dr. Len Faulk said research by the group went into targeting the right type of business for Jamestown.

The group will continue to prepare for the strategy session with Linden, with more discussion planned during their February meeting, which will be Thursday, Feb. 20.