After the global recession, there was a considerable boom in small and medium-sized businesses. Economic experts believe that it was due to the paradigm shift created by the shutdown of long-established companies, and the unfair restrictions of employment.
Therefore, instead of pursuing a much-coveted position in other big corporations, a lot of people who were let go, as well as those disillusioned by the uncertainties of employment opted to be their own bosses instead.
Although starting a business can be an immensely challenging task, many find that there’s more fulfillment in taking this route because of the control they have. After being in a highly competitive and stressful work environment, a lot of new and wannabe enterprise owners are resolute to do things differently and more open to innovative and progressive practices despite their small operations.
Not only that. They are excited to address the needs of the market. This means they are more active in coming up with and implementing fresh initiatives to adequately stimulate the local industries. Thus, in no time, they become important economic engines for their small towns and cities.
How Small Businesses Do It
It is not just the fresh way of thinking that’s working exceptionally well for a lot of small businesses. Other factors are reinforcing their contribution to the local economy too. These are efforts that demonstrate a solid commitment to long-term success, but also in developing hometown pride. Five of these factors are discussed below.
In the corporate realm, synergy is described as 1+1=3. This fundamentally means that the sum of all parts is more valuable than just the contribution of every individual part.
A synergistic result or effect is something that only effective teams can produce. This is why even small companies or businesses invest in team development programmes. Indeed, getting members of the organisation to work with each other really well can only yield great benefits.
2. Friendship with the competition
Establishing a friendly relationship with similar operations in the area is a component of the smart small business mentality. Working with competition instead of against it creates a sense of community spirit that benefits everyone.
With small operations, this allows them to deliver services even if they do not have the products customers are looking for. At the same time, the friendly relations among businesses ensure a return of favours. Furthermore, it leaves a positive impression on end-users, which could mean future transactions.
3. Effective leadership
Strong and effective leadership is undoubtedly a driving factor behind thriving companies. Unfortunately, studies reveal that a lot of long-established businesses fail at choosing people to lead operations. This results in a waste of time, money, and the disengagement of other employees.
Small businesses are proving to be smarter with their need for leadership. They are not only more careful in choosing the right person for the job, but they also work to enhance the coaching or leadership skills in the workplace. No effort is too frivolous in building skills for efficacy and efficiency.
4. Impressive customer service
More and more small businesses are going back to the basics of doing business, which is to make service the top priority. Profit is only secondary.
The beautiful thing about small businesses focusing on service is they have no issue delivering personalised services. Additionally, they make their services as accessible as possible to their clients. Say, something needs to be fixed; they immediately send an expert to handle the job.
The service’s first business culture ensures customers’ loyalty and satisfaction. More importantly, it allows small businesses to present new sales opportunities. Happy customers are often more than willing to participate in and do not mind spending more money on these provisions.
5. Making experts out of employees
The effort to turn all employees into experts is a critical factor in the remarkable productivity of SMEs. According to company owners, having exceptional employees is an incredibly clever strategy for their growth due to the following reasons:
- Expert workers expedite processes.
- Expert workers decrease overhead costs. It’s cheaper to pay workers who get the job done quickly and correctly more than to pay more mediocre employees minimum wage.
- Expert workers cooperate better with each other and can effectively share each other’s loads.
- Expert workers create a VIP experience for clients or customers, even just with their standard practices.
Thus, it is never a waste to invest a large percentage of the operational budget on training employees to be the best at their job.
Smart operations with the efforts cited above are no doubt, the core reason behind the irreplaceable value of SMEs in boosting the local economy.
So, if you are looking to launch a new business, make sure that such efforts uphold your operations. They are the major factors behind the unexpectedly flourishing commercial scene in a lot of small towns or cities.
Salma El-Shurafa is an experienced Executive Coach and founder of The Pathway Project. She is a Professional Certified Coach by the International Coaching Federation (ICF), a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach from The Coaches Training Institute (CTI) and a graduate of CTI’s Co-Active Leadership program.