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The Thai-Swedish Chamber of Commerce (TSCC) has set out to rejuvenate itself ahead of 2016, to build an operation that is tune with the times and with readiness to adapt and address the needs of new companies starting up or entering markets in a Thailand-Sweden perspective. This focuses on assisting Thai companies looking at entering Scandinavian markets and Swedish companies interested in the Thailand market itself or the country as a Southeast Asian hub.
It is a comprehensive effort where TSCC modernises its operation and purpose, under leadership of its Board of Governors and the new Executive Director Jiraya Chanchon. The aim is to come up with a strategy, and resources allocation, that can strengthen this organisation for the long term.
Finding ways to make the operation sustainable has been put in focus as the most critical need, along with implementing a number of improvements that will generate expected opportunities for the chamber to grow and fulfil roles. The membership packages and overall offering are being improved.
Aside assisting the well-established Swedish corporations and brand with presence in Thailand TSCC aims to be of value to the companies of the future, the new entrepreneurs who are seeing the global market as their oyster; and to be meaningful and play a role with substance. Those are important things in focus for the chamber as it strives to play a key role in today’s dominating digital economy.
Today’s reality – with the digital economy and a strong surge of disruptive businesses coming on to the markets – is very different versus when the Chamber was formed over 25 years ago, impacting TSCC’s reason for being and urging TSCC to adapt.
The type of activities TSCC should be running in order to be relevant, and the knowhow and added value to businesses that the chamber can give is being improved.
“The circumstances for our chamber have drastically changed in recent years and therefore we wanted to upgrade ourselves to be in the forefront, utilizing modern ways of communication,” states TSCC President Jan Eriksson, one of those who have been engaged in TSCC from back in the very early days of its operation.
The Chamber realised it needed to level up and become attuned to a very dynamic and fast-changing future and business landscape. This requires having on-going, strategic monitoring of trends and business news.
Monitoring local as well as global market trends and business growth opportunities in Thailand and the rest of Southeast Asia is then of key importance.
“By staying alert and by building a stronger foundation that is marketing and media-oriented, we will have the readiness and tools to adapt and better meet the challenges and opportunities in the future, including serving incoming investors with any Swedish-Thai connection entering here,” comments Lars Svensson, Governor of the Board (and Oriflame Thailand representative).
New team and strategy
Along with the new Executive Director Jiraya Chanchon, Lars was appointed by the Board in August to oversee the work on a new strategy and the hiring of new team members.
Since then appointed working groups have looked into and given proposals to be synchronised into a strategy with a work plan, identified priorities and KPIs for the Chamber.
“Member representatives in the Board have all been engaged, contributing with their various skills and know-how in researching and proposing the changes and actions for a Board proposal,” says Lars Svensson.
Based on Board-approved broader strokes for a new strategy it was also necessary to build a new office team that have capability to perform the tasks required and with the right skills. It will consist in local, in-the-know Thai graduates. Simultaneously, the former Project manager, Jiraya Chanchon was offered and accepted the role as new Executive Director.
Since then the work on the strategy has continued with urgency in order to be able to present new packages of marketing and sponsorship and a calendar of events to the members ahead of 2016.
Simultaneously, Jiraya Chanchon has been busy recruiting her team, to include on administrator, one project coordinator with membership responsibility, in addition to having one trainee at the Chamber office.
“Sustainability is important while at the same time giving something back to our members. They should see the value in being members,” comments Jiraya Chanchon on the new goals.
A SWOT analysis points to weaknesses, such as: not enough value/benefit to members, and lack of relevance in services and support.