This year the Upper Arlington Area Chamber of Commerce has focused much attention on developing educational opportunities for member businesses with the creation of the business development committee.

This year the Upper Arlington Area Chamber of Commerce has focused much attention on developing educational opportunities for member businesses with the creation of the business development committee.

The committee serves as a think tank for new initiatives to help members connect, learn and grow their businesses.

"Our focus will vary from event to event as we 'Ask-The-Expert' on topics from Social Media Marketing Strategies to the Art of Networking. Our goal is to work with our own resources as well as outside organizations to help create better opportunities for Chamber members, and also attract new members to the chamber," said Heidi Nail, chair of the committee.

The business development committee's newest initiative is one that will take member benefits to the next level.

In addition to ongoing educational events, the committee now plans to introduce a business advisory program that will afford members the opportunity to meet one-on-one with an expert adviser in a given field when they need assistance or professional advice.

The committee hopes to have advisers representing many different areas of expertise, from accounting and legal to search engine optimization and more.

Several professionals have already committed to becoming advisers in their areas of expertise. Remaining areas are currently being reviewed and filled by the business development committee.

Advisers must be willing to donate some of their time towards complimentary meetings with chamber members to discuss their individual business needs/challenges on an as needed basis.

Advisers will be selected by the committee based on experience and willingness to dedicate their time to the program.

The business development committee hopes to have all advisor roles filled and the new advisory program available to members by the end of 2010.

Those who would like to learn more about this initiative or how to apply for an advisory role may call the chamber office at 481-5710.