Kuopio Health Board blog-Janne Parkkila
“As our members include both small and large companies and public organisations, effectiveness means slightly different things to everyone.”
Impacts are visible in members’ activities and the vitality of the region
What produces effectiveness? I feel like many different factors affect it. First of all, the activities of the member companies must produce positive things. These may include cooperation, sharing what each member has learned or learning new things from others.
On the other hand, the innovation ecosystem includes both smaller operators as well as large and public ones, which contribute to the vitality of the region.
Together, we can promote the vitality of our region, which refers to an area extending beyond Kuopio’s borders. We must also achieve visibility outside of the local level and set our sights outside the region, also to foreign countries. With more awareness, companies and employees operating elsewhere may develop an interest in the region.
It is also good to note that as our members include both small and large companies and public organisations, effectiveness means slightly different things to everyone.
Challenging years behind us
It goes without saying that the past two years have been difficult. It seems that everything came to a halt during the coronavirus pandemic. Perhaps companies have continued their business operations, but the progress of many companies has come to a standstill. In addition to this period of stagnation, many have struggled financially.
I feel that this has also been reflected in the Kuopio Health activities. Cooperation requires trust between organisations, and trust can only emerge when people meet in person. Building trust cannot rely on tiny, black Teams screens.
In the Kuopio Health Board, I’m a representative of small companies with a few employees and an annual turnover below one million euros. We find it important to facilitate cooperation and create a dialogue on which partnerships can be built.
Building up a business cluster
Next, we must find a way to form the first business cluster used to promote our partnership project. It will enable us to prove that the Kuopio Health network works and allows us to reap synergy benefits.
This is of utmost importance for small companies. What can we do together? At first, our collaborative activities can include very low-threshold efforts, such as joint visits to fairs. From there, we can proceed towards joint projects or exports.
It is also important to make sure that SMEs can obtain a sufficient competent workforce. Collaboration with educational institutions plays a key role in this context, and there is still a lot of room for improvement in this area. While a small company will not be able to spend hundreds of thousands on a partnership project, a highly competent workforce is a prerequisite for growth. Thankfully, Kuopio Health can contribute to solving this challenge.
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