• Small Business Week 2021

    Small Business Week 2021

    The United States Small Business Administration has celebrated National Small Business Week for over fifty years.  Cities across the country continue to celebrate their local entrepreneurs during this traditional first week of May.  All of us, in our everyday lives, are impacted by the small businesses that contribute to our thriving and robust neighborhoods and communities.  Whether we are, or have been, a small business owner, are closely related to a small business owner, or simply prefer the "Shop Local" mantra, we cannot overlook the contributions of these individuals to the great American Dream.

    Even the largest corporations often have small business origin stories.  How many of us have seen the 
    famous picture of Jeff Bazos in 1994, sitting at a cramped wooden desk with "Amazon.com" spray-painted on a plain, white banner?  As we continue this week of celebrating small businesses, there are a few things that both business owners and customers can do to contribute to our community's overall success:

    1) Engage
    We are all finding more opportunities for recreation and leisure, especially as our world continues its post-COVID recovery.  What are we doing with that time?  Consider dining at a locally-owned restaurant or take in a show at your local theater company or performing arts studio.  In need of home or auto maintenance?  A local contractor can provide the services you need.  Are you a business owner looking for professional services to address specific areas of your operations?  There are numerous self-employed professionals - many of whom had extensive experience at prominent corporations - that can help address your business needs.  Our 
    member directory is a great place to find the small business you're looking for.

    2) Promote
    Many small businesses opt to take a DIY approach to marketing their services across the multitude of communications channels which now exist.  Those who do invest in marketing have budgets that cannot at all compare to the larger firms they have to compete with.  The feedback from a satisfied customer is a great equalizer for our local business owners.  A few minutes of sharing your experience - in either your personal or professional life - on your favorite social media platform can make a tremendous impact on increasing the visibility of that business that served you.  

    National Small Business Week is a great opportunity to share the love and spread the word.  Remember to use the hashtag #NSBW or #SmallBusinessWeek to connect your post to larger, national dialogue.

    3) Invest
    Small business owners, themselves, also have a responsibility to contribute to the success that this week aims to highlight.  The Northern Virginia region offers entrepreneurs an abundance of resources to establish and expand their enterprise.  Business owners should take the time to familiarize themselves with community outlets for marketing, education, and business development.  Local services such as the 
    Fairfax County Economic Development AuthorityFairfax County Department of Economic Initiatives, and the Virginia Small Business Development Center offer workshops, research, and information on a host of local, state, and national programs all designed to grow your business.  Private initiatives like Grow with Google offer free workshops and access to valuable industry certifications.

    Opportunities for each of us to ensure the continued health and well-being of our small business economy need not be confined to a single week.  Go out and find a local business owner that you can work with today!

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