The recent headline, "Texas isn’t rustling from State" in the Los Angeles Times implies that few California companies are picking up and moving their operations from California to Texas. That’s good news, but it is not the end of the story and it does not indicate that California can rest on its massive assets and assume that the world will beat a path to our door.

In any given year, very few corporations relocate their headquarters or major operations to another state. Corporate boards and CEO’s in California and elsewhere try every strategy possible before undertaking the costly and dramatic decision of moving to another state. Business CEOs are particularly concerned about the possible loss of existing employees and the value that these employees bring to the company.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry has probably moved very few California corporate headquarters to his home state during his term as governor. But undoubtedly, he has opened more than a few doors with this pitch: As a growing company, the next time you are looking for an expansion location, I hope you will consider Texas. We love business and added 950, 000 jobs during the last decade.

While convincing a corporate headquarters to move to your state brings headlines, the majority of new jobs are created by helping existing companies to expand. States and cities help their existing companies by pro-actively reaching out, responding to requests for assistance and reducing the amount of time it takes to invest capital and add jobs.

When states and cities make job growth a priority and exhibit an affirming attitude toward business, they establish a business climate that makes it futile for governors like Rick Perry to recruit. When we reach the point when California employers respond to out-of-state promotions with:  “California has the assets I need to grow my company and both the state and local governments have been very responsive,” 99 percent of the competition for jobs for our citizens has been won.    

Satisfied customers are always your best sales people and economic development is no exception.  When the dual goals of growing good jobs and creating satisfied business customers are embraced by elected officials in Sacramento and throughout our state, California will no longer have the second highest unemployment rate in the country and governors from other states will stop wasting their money on airfare to California.