Business Networking Can Enrich Kailua Community


Chamber Chat…KCOC president Cynthia Manley

On any given weekend, you can find me walking Kailua beach while listening to books on tape, exchanging a friendly wave with fellow walkers and smiling at the wagging tails of four-legged beach-goers. My daughter asked me why those moments seem to rejuvenate me and why I look forward to that special time, and I explained to her that I am so grateful to live and work in Kailua, with friendly people and a town that is passionate about what they like, think and do.

I went on to tell her about the wonderful conversations and moments that happen during my walks, such as seeing the elderly couple that walks hand in hand nearly every day, or families building sand castles, kids surfing with their parents. During my walks, I think about our local businesses, and often stop to chat with many of our members. I guess you could say that my walks are networking in a casual atmosphere. Networking promotes familiarity, comfort and confidence whether on the beach, in the board-room or in line at the grocery store.

Kailua Chamber of Commerce provides numerous opportunities for local businesses to not only meet other business people and potential customers, but also to learn how to network. General membership meetings are open to the public and are a great way to network your business to success. Our next such meeting is from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Nov. 19 at Mid Pacific Country Club. KCOC has nearly 200 members from all types of businesses and a board of business leaders who actively volunteer our time to create and implement strategies that help members grow their business and reach more customers.

We support events such as Symphony in the Park, mixers, leadership seminars and the Fourth of July Parade. Kailua Fireworks president Jana Holden and its events chairwoman Jody Sakaba — both members of KCOC — have been leading the fireworks effort, actively recruiting funds to support the popular event that takes place the evening of the parade.

Coming up: Cool Kailua Nights will take place from 4:30 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday, behind Whole Foods in Kailua. Ameriprise Kailua again will provide free family photos by a local professional photographer from 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. (For an appointment, call 540-2020). A Cup of Tea welcomes everyone to its annual Scones and Tea Nights Friday and Oct. 17 with a Toys for Tots drive from 6 to 9 p.m. (For required reservations, call 230-8832.) Le Jardin Academy will host an open house from 10 a.m. to noon Nov. 1, with the public invited. (For details, call 261-0707, ext. 1310.)

Cynthia Manley is president of Kailua Chamber of Commerce, a mother of two, and director of public relations at Le Jardin Academy. Email