Every year, dozens of companies—and site selection professionals—make inquiries about locating in the Sioux Falls area. After checking out our website and connecting with the Development Foundation, some company executives and site selectors make trips to Sioux Falls to explore out the community, examine existing buildings and ask questions about our business climate and our productive work force.
However, even after experiencing Sioux Falls for themselves, not all of those business leaders make their decisions immediately. We continue our marketing message and promote our area as the best place to live and grow a business throughout the decision-making process. We keep in touch with those companies even when they have not yet made the Sioux Falls choice because we’re planting seeds that often take time to produce an economic harvest.
The process of moving a company—or even expanding to a new location—is an involved, expensive experience. The challenges to establishing an operation in a new location are daunting—and the details that can delay a move are countless. Economic considerations weigh on corporate decision makers, requiring them to do the due diligence necessary for relocation or expansion. Determining factors may fall into place and the decision to move to our part of the country can happen at any time—just not always as quickly as we could hope.
Sometimes business decisions just take a long time to make. Sioux Falls may host a company that appears quite interested in moving fairly soon, only to find that their idea of soon is two years from now. Or, they may tour properties, sites and communities this spring and we won’t hear anything until NEXT spring. It may turn out that the company in question made their decision right after we hosted them—but their timetable for relocation was quite a bit slower than our anticipation of their choice.
So, we keep planting the seeds that may come to harvest months or even years later. To the people in Sioux Falls we visit, or local executives who share their own stories and get very positive feedback from visiting companies, it may seem as if things are moving too slowly. But a decision to expand or relocate to the Sioux Falls area happens on the company’s timetable, not ours. Just like good farmers everywhere, this spring and every spring, we’ll keep planting the seeds of prosperity for an even more economically sound tomorrow.
By Dean Dziedzic, Interim President, Sioux Falls Development Foundation
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