The mission of the Grosse Pointe Chamber of Commerce represents the varied
interests of our membership while promoting commerce, events, and activities
for the five Grosse Pointe communities through effective advocacy.
Jennifer Palms Boettcher started working as the Director of Membership when the Grosse Pointe Chamber of Commerce began in 2006. By 2010, she became the President.
“I enjoyed my role delivering excellent programs and services to enhance the quality of life for the business community and the Grosse Pointe community as a whole.”
The Chamber has grown exponentially throughout the years, serving more than 600 members. “Thanks to the leadership and guidance of 18 board members and two part-time employees,” Boettcher explains, “together we accomplished many goals to keep our business community thriving and surviving the hard times we’ve recently experienced.”
One of the many things that inspires Boettcher is the large number of women-owned businesses that play a significant role in the Chamber’s membership. She explains, “Today Grosse Pointe has women working in many businesses, such as: restaurants, salons, retail such as apparel and gift stores, landscape architecture, ophthalmology, legal services and attorneys, realtors, physicians, dermatologists, interior decorators, accountants, veterinarians, senior care, health care, and dental care – the list goes on.”
After 15 years contributing to the Chamber, Boettcher says her best words for women starting or maintaining a successful business are: risk, failure, success, balance, health, appreciation, gratitude, and advice.
Risk and Success
It’s difficult for women to start an independent business because of the huge risk involved, Boettcher contends. “Failure goes hand-in-hand with success, regardless of the industry or product, so don’t let failure surprise you; learn from what goes well and what can be done differently. You must believe that you will be successful.”
Work/life balance is another area that a new business owner has to get right. “To maintain a business while managing a family is difficult, but it’s done every day by successful people in the workforce. Separate work from family and play as much as possible – realize how important the two professions, businesswoman and mother are to your complete and long-term success. Be determined.”
Physical and Mental Health
Good physical and mental health are indispensable to success no matter what you do. “It’s often the case with women in their own business that they give up rest, eating well, doctor and appointments to get more done. You are cheating yourself.”
One of the overlooked points running a business is expressing appreciation to those helping you. Boettcher suggests, “Listen to your employees, they are your customer, too. They should work without fear of being reprimanded, especially in front of clients or customers. Show and explain the way you want tasks done in lieu of an expression of anger, whether the task is folding towels or giving an injection. We all have a learning curve.”
Good Business Advisers
Remember to surround yourself with experienced business advisors. “Networking into groups where you find like minds and talented entrepreneurs within your community will lead to the best support you’ll ever find.”
Remember, behind every successful woman is a tribe of other successful women who have her back.