Managing Internal Expectations
Economic development in communities is a process by which corporate consideration may build over time before actual announcements can be made. There may have been unrealistic expectations created about the timing and magnitude of the returns on the initial investments. Many communities have put plans into place to manage their community's expectations about the benefits of economic development. Outcomes include announcements of new companies, new jobs created, and so forth. One key lesson in measuring the performance of an economic development organization relates to accountability. It is absolutely essential that the objectives against which an economic development program is to be measured are things over which the professionals have a significant degree of control. Economic development organizations must be able to demonstrate that logic was inherent in all expenditure decisions and that that logic is consistent with the community's overall goals. The need for justification of investments in economic development organizations applies not only to the public dollars invested.