When The Right Place attracts a new company to West Michigan, it’s always big news. 

The reality, however, is that over the past 32 years, 80 percent of all new jobs and investments spurred by The Right Place have come from existing businesses in the region. 80 percent! 

For this reason, The Right Place business development team focuses the majority of our work assisting companies right here in West Michigan. We believe the existing business community will play a large role in determining the future economic growth of the region.


Each year we meet with over 300 regional companies, like yours, to discuss issues and opportunities for growth. The goal is to connect you to the resources you need to continue growing your business in West Michigan. We call these meetings “business retention meetings,” and they are part of our larger Business Retention Program. 

The Right Place Business Retention Program is the cornerstone of our economic development strategy. It is designed to accomplish two main goals:

Hearthside Foods in Grand Rapids, Michigan

1) to retain existing businesses that may be at risk of moving out of the region,

2) and to provide expansion assistance for existing businesses in our region.

During these confidential meetings, we meet privately with business owners and C-level executives. It’s about sitting down in a confidential environment to discuss the company and current business issues. Because The Right Place is a private non-profit organization, we are able to engage in private meetings like this without having to publicly report or share that information.


There are literally hundreds of federal, state, and local business growth resources available to West Michigan businesses. You can “google” anything nowadays, but knowing what to search for, where to find it, and how to access it is an entirely different matter. 

This is the very reason why The Right Place business development team exists. Over the past three decades of our history, we have developed a vast network of resources and relationships for your business to leverage. And all it takes to access this network is a meeting with our team. 

However, it’s important to note these meetings are not just for growing companies. We can provide assistance to companies at any phase, whether they are expanding, downsizing, or simply looking to be more competitive. 

Building a relationship with The Right Place ensures you have access to the most up-to-date business information and resources. From workforce development and training resources, to governmental relationships and local business networks, our business development team is here for your business in West Michigan.


A critical piece of our local business support strategy is The Right Place Partner Program. This program is designed for West Michigan’s professional service firms to bring an enhanced level of service to their clients in the region by engaging The Right Place. The idea is to use The Right Place business development team as a strategic resource for both you and your clients. 

West Michigan professional service providers (legal firms, accounting firms, construction companies, etc.) help us meet and build relationships with growing companies in the region. After all, you’re often the first to know about your client’s business challenges. 

And while there is never a wrong time to engage The Right Place business development team, we have assembled five common business challenges to listen for when meeting with clients. If these topics come up in conversation, let’s work together to ensure your client’s success.


Do your clients need to expand in order to accommodate business growth? We are here to provide businesses in West Michigan with the support and resources they need to expand in the region.
Working in partnership, we can coordinate state and local resources to support the company’s growth and lower the overall risk of expansion.


Are your clients having trouble finding new talent or qualified training providers? We and our partners at Hello West Michigan can assist you and your clients with connections to local and state resources, with the aim of locating new talent or training new and existing talent.


Do you have a client thinking about transferring ownership or selling their business? Our goal in any business transition or succession plan is to retain local ownership in West Michigan. Working together, we can connect your client to local networks, find local support services for business succession, and identify local buyers for acquisitions.


Are your clients exploring new markets or evaluating diversification strategies? We have the tools, programs, and connections to ensure your client’s business plans succeed. From import and export assistance to market diversification strategies, we can connect them to a variety of proven resources.


Do you have manufacturing clients in need of some operational improvement? Our partners at The Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center – West are leaders in providing objective, high-quality manufacturing training solutions in the areas of business growth, lean, quality management, environmental, and safety.


If you would like to meet with us and discuss your plans for your business, or if you’re a service provider interested in our partner program, please contact our business development team at info@rightplace.org. From there, we will arrange a meeting at your convenience. The experts on our team have access to a variety of programs, tools, and resources to grow your business. We look forward to meeting with you.