October 08, 2013
Are you ‘All In’?
The Centennial Award recipients. All photos Mark Bowen Media
Nearly 800 professionals from the area's corporate, private and non-profit sectors went all in today at the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber 2013 Annual Lunch. Held to reflect upon and celebrate the work done by the Chamber and area member businesses and community organizations on behalf of the region, the lunch also provides an opportunity to honor enterprises in Cincinnati USA upon completing 100 years of service in our community.
Ellen van der Horst, president & CEO, Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber heralded 2013 as a year of success. "Cincinnati USA has enviable momentum," offered Van der Horst. "And scores of critical initiatives led by numerous civic, social and development organizations to keep things rolling."
Van der Horst challenged the professionals in attendance. "But," Van der Horst challenged the audience, "I think we can do even better than that. By working more seamlessly, more efficiently and more collaboratively together, I think we can accelerate our momentum.
Van der Horst cited several "game changing" efforts, including:
- Agenda 360 and GO Cincinnati, which outline growth goals and strategies for the region, and served to catalyze both the birth of several entities, including Cintrifuse - and the rebirth of the Port Authority.
- Annual benchmarking trips which help us to learn from the success of exemplar regions nationwide.
- The region's first-ever comparative scorecard - because what gets measured gets done.
- WE Lead and C-Change, leadership development programs specifically for women and young professionals, boast 700 highly talented individuals who are more committed than ever to make their mark on their companies and our community.
- The Minority Business Accelerator, now the model for similar programs across the country, including Charlotte, Lexington, Cleveland, Dayton and Greenville.
- CincyTech, an early entrant and key pillar in the region's now burgeoning innovation ecosystem.
- Critical, behind-the-scenes work to rebuild the region's air and ground transportation infrastructure.
- BrandHub, our comprehensive effort to unite, leverage and grow this region's unique assets in consumer products and branding.
- Cluster-centered economic development work of the Cincinnati USA Partnership. Through September, the Partnership has closed 38 economic development projects, delivering 7,234 jobs, $579 million in total payroll and $331 million in new capital investment -- exceeding 2012 results and putting the region on track to hit a new record high.
Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber 2013 Board Chair Kay Geiger, president of PNC Bank Ohio and Northern Kentucky, also addressed the lunch crowd. "The Centennial Award members we honor today have a legacy of courage, determination, vision and leadership. They've withstood challenges, an ever-changing global and regional economic and competitive landscape - and thrived."
The 2013 Centennial Award recipients are:
- Dan Beard Council and the Boy Scouts of America
- Ace Doran
- J.D. Cloud & Co. L.L.P.
- Formica Group
- The David Hirschberg Company
Gary Loveman, chief executive officer and president, Caesars Entertainment Corporation, who had met with over 50 CEOs at the Chamber's VIP reception prior to the Lunch, gave the keynote address. Entitled "Winning with the urban casino model", Loveman discussed the economic and job creating efforts of the Horseshoe Casino. Loveman talked about the evolution of the urban gaming model and its economic impact.
"Gaming has become less and less central to our activities - top notch entertainment, celebrity chefs, high end retail and world class golf courses are changing the casino economic development models," Loveman said.
"And resort destinations of the Vegas sort are making the shift to urban markets - and bearing good results for both developers and regions, from job creation to tourism to stimulating small businesses."
Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati welcomed 2.7million guests in its first six months. Horseshoe Cincinnati also netted the highest customer service scores - and the model is now on its way to Baltimore.
As he discussed Caesars loyalty model, he shared thoughts on motivating service providers, and challenged the logic of offering the best service to customers at the expense of your most loyal set.
"Because the secret sauce to maintaining loyalty is to treat all customers well, but treat all customers differently," Loveman said.
"We reward loyalty with fantastic meals, entertainment and travel experiences. We provide you with a Total Rewards card, and then we ask you for your feedback. We try to learn from you and your experience to deliver the best."
The former associate professor at the Harvard University Graduate School of Business Administration launched the gaming industry's most successful loyalty and analytics program, Total Rewards, which boasts more than 40 million members.
View the video from today's event
More excerpts from Loveman's speech will be available in the October 15 issue of Currents.
Special thanks to 2013 Annual Lunch sponsors: