On this Independence Day, we at OutLoud thought it was proper to toast OUR independence — that of small business owners who had a vision, took a risk and struck out on their own. As a small business for the last 10-plus years, I have an appreciation for what it takes to be that guy (or gal) … the one that gives up the certain paycheck for the promise of making one’s own way and following a passion.
And we are not alone … far from it! Just to start, you can find a great list of “Independents” and get 20% off at Local First Arizona. The following about Small Business may not be new or cutting edge, twitterable fare, but it bears repeating — especially during the days when sweat equity beats real equity and you wonder who else lives this kind of life — you are in good company being the captain of your own destiny.
According to the Small Business Association (a great tool for us little guys, 500 employees and under), Small Business:
- Represents 99.7 percent of all employer firms.
- Employs half of all private sector employees.
- Pays 44 percent of total U.S. private payroll.
- Generated 65 percent of net new jobs over the past 17 years.
- Creates more than half of the nonfarm private GDP.
- Hires 43 percent of high tech workers ( scientists, engineers, computer programmers, and others).
- Are 52 percent home-based and 2 percent franchises.
- Produces 13 times more patents per employee than large patenting firms.
So we raise our glass to our fellow “Independents” who have a connection and commitment to their community. Those who come up with UNIQUE ideas so unlike any other. Those who strive to make the PERSONAL connection with customers and whose success is tied up in their happiness. Those who simply see a formula for doing it BETTER. Happy Independence Day and thank you for being an ongoing source of inspiration!
Deb Smith, Founder, OLMS