Shelby County Chamber Luncheon 2022 Business Outlook Topic

The Shelby County Chamber had a very strong year in 2021, outgoing Chamber Speaker Chris Grace said.

Although it was unable to meet for in-person rallies until the end of May, the chamber hosted 104 meetings, programs and other events, and also hosted 60 virtual opportunities for business people from around the world. network, learn and grow their businesses.

“The programs were not just activities; they have been opportunities to share career preparation programs with our future workforce at our Shelby County schools,” said Grace. “We spoke with small business owners and entrepreneurs and how they can manage their challenges and take advantage of opportunities for growth; collaborated with our partners at 58 INC. to discuss issues that affect our businesses and communities and continue to make Shelby County the best place to live in Alabama.

Entering the 2022 program year, Brian Massey assumed the role of chamber speaker, and Grace handed him the gavel as he took the helm.

“We have a busy year in 2022 with a lot on our plate,” Massey said. “Several things I’m excited about are supporting and promoting the World Games, growing the Women’s Business Council, finding an alternative event to our golf tournament, and finishing our final year of Shelby One – Level Up strong. .”

The luncheon’s featured speaker was Amiee Mellon, acting dean of the University of Montevallo’s Stephens Business School. She provided an overview of the cumulative 2022 Business Outlook Survey results for Shelby County.

Some statistics from the study included:

  • A strong sense that full-time employment will decline
  • 56% think the negative effects of COVID-19 will last two to five years
  • 93% of organizations reported the impacts of COVID-19
  • Labor shortage: the unemployment rate in the United States is 3.9% (6.3 million); unemployment in Alabama is 3.1% (69,000); unemployment in Shelby County is 1.8% (2,000)
  • Supply disruptions and inflation (rising wages, rising housing rents and shipping rates)

Shelby County Outlook

Of the 129 companies that responded to the survey:

  • Performance: 84.5% expect an increase in turnover (69% in 2021); 7.8% expect a drop (23% in 2021)
  • Job growth: 53.5% expect an increase in full-time employees (34% in 2021); 9.31 expect a decline (12.5% ​​in 2021)
  • Economic Direction: Shelby County: 82.2% going in the right direction (73% in 2021); 3.9% are going in the wrong direction (2.73% in 2021). For the US economy, 14.8% is going in the right direction (29% in 2021); 60.2% are heading in the wrong direction (34% in 2021)

In summary, Mellon said confidence in Shelby County’s economy is approaching pre-pandemic levels; full-time employees have measurable differences in organization size and expected results; supply chain issues vary greatly and the tendency is to order early and look for alternatives; and employees want to focus on one or two areas.

Also during the meeting, Jim Purvis, President and CEO of AC Legg, received the Alex Dudchock Community Leadership Award. The purpose of the award is to honor an outstanding civic or corporate leader in Shelby County who demonstrates the values ​​by which Dudchock, the former County Executive, has conducted himself throughout his career.

AC Legg opened in Birmingham in 1923 and moved to Shelby County on September 10, 2001. The company recently celebrated its 20th anniversary in the county.

“The 99-year legacy of excellence continues today as it is still a family business,” said CEO and Chamber Speaker Kirk Mancer. “Purvis has been at the helm since the move to Shelby County, and his leadership is a testament to putting people first and service above self.”

Jessica C. Bell