National Small Business Week

Every year since 1963, the President of the United States has proclaimed National Small Business Week to recognize the contributions of small business to our economic well being.

With this Sunday’s start to National Small Business Week, it is an appropriate time to speak out about how important small businesses really are to the American economy.

For example, firms with less than 500 employees drive the economy by providing jobs for over half of the nation’s workforce.  They create between 60-80 percent of new jobs in the country.  Not only that, but small businesses are high innovators, providing many of the new and creative ideas that spur growth.   Employees of small businesses often have a genuine stake in the productive process, giving them more sense of ownership than in a large company.  It is easier to get to the top people in the company, often the owner, when you have questions or problems, or talk to the same representative who knows you and your situation, as opposed to large corporations, with few personal client relationships.  Small businesses can react more quickly to client demands as well, creating a competitive advantage as well as a trust advantage.

In researching the SBA statistics, I was surprised to find that very little has been quantified since 2002 (after the last census data was culled) so with the massive downturn in the economy, trying to quote from that data is outdated at best.  We will have to wait to accurately account for small business numbers until the 2010 census is complete, but based on historical data we can again reiterate that small businesses are indeed major contributors to the strengths of the U.S. economy.

In closing, if you are forming a SDVOSB, try to be an innovator, set you and your company apart from the others.  Every time we turn around we run into another SDVOSB that is starting out and trying to do everything under the sun instead of specializing in an area.  You will see them out there, they claim they can do Information Technology, Mow Grass, Security Guards, Paint Buildings, etc. and they rarely win any contracts.  In our experience, the SDVOSBs that succeed have a niche.

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