Part II: What do Cool Communities Have in Common?

Posted by Guillermo Mazier on Jun 3, 2009 1:57:04 AM

Last time we talked about how workforce is looking for a place to move before they look for a job. We talked about who is hitting the top of the cool communities list (Phoenix, Austin, Atlanta, Portland, Seattle, etc.). And we left the conversation hanging on an important question:

What do cool communities have in common and how can my community make that list?

The answers may not be what you expect.

What they have in common? Coffee shops. Dog parks. Alternate transportation modes (we're talking light rails, subways, bike lanes and walking paths, here).

Seattle has the most coffee shops per capita of any metro with a population over 1 million. Portland is second. Both make the cut.

Portland also makes the top 20 list for greenest (or most sustainable) places to live. So does Austin.

How does your city measure up?

One of my favorite authors, Rebecca Ryan (founder of Next Generation Consulting and author of Live First, Work Second), would say that the communities make that list because they have a great handprint. What's a handprint, you may ask? It's a measurement that Next Generation has come up with that is able to tell you:

1) What young talent is looking for from your community;

2) How your community measures up;

3) What are your opportunities--ways that you can change their minds.

Download a sample handprint from them here.

And stay tuned again for part III, when we'll talk about online marketing strategies and overall marketing strategies that just might put you on that list.

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