Some people might say that small business is – well, small and not very important when compared to the giant companies that inhabit the S&P 500. Of course, the companies of the S&P 500 are important to the US. They employ many people and export around the world which creates jobs for people. However, small business is equally if not more important.
We say that because, at a minimum, all those giant businesses once started out as small businesses. At one point they were just a person or two in size and working their posteriors off to survive and maybe even grow. It’s a great tradition that all businesses go though. Consider it boot camp for business. If you’ve been through it or are going through it now, you know what we mean!
But aside from that, the 27.2 million small businesses in the US create an enormous number of new jobs; 60% to 80% of all new jobs created depending on your survey. Small businesses aren’t just the “seed corn” of the future giants; they are the job creation engine of the here and now. And that’s true whether the owner entrepreneurs want to grow into a giant or just stay at a nice comfortable size to support their families and their communities.
We have the honor of working with a number of small businesses especially retailers buying store supplies so we get to talk to a pretty wide range of people at various stages of their businesses.
And what we are hearing is that times are tough – especially in retail – but even now, we speak with people starting new businesses and hiring staff. As for the established small businesses, they are growing to fill the gaps left by competitors who didn’t make it.
Small business is dynamic. Small business is chaotic and crazy and exciting. Small business is what makes our economy go. It is the root of innovation whether it’s a new product or a new method of operation. Whether you’re building a new widget or coming up with a better way to run your store; you are doing something better than the way it used to be done.
We don’t know who the next innovator is or what they’ll innovate on but we have a pretty good idea that they will have started with a great idea and the enormous drive of a small business owner!