How Can A Small Business Enhance Community? Small businesses have a great responsibility in the 21st century. They must learn how to survive & thrive among emerging competition owned and operated by business minds located all over the world. As the internet has changed nearly all business models, so must small business owners realize they must shift the way they play the game. Small businesses, among many things, will need to increase their involvement in the local community. Although this cannot ensure success, especially in industries that have moved exclusively online. It can offer an added advantage to a company that has some mix of external (outside buyer radius) and internal (inside buyer radius) competition. Small businesses can enhance community through proper leadership, mission-based marketing, and fundraisers.
A small business enhances community first by being flat (minimal layers) enough to be profitable and produce jobs. Let us assume we are well past that, then, leadership is the key (Hire Level 5!). Instead of managing or even more grueling micromanagement, how about good ole’ fashion leadership. Leaders train and teach employees how things are done right. Competitive firms create training videos or manuals aimed to train new recruits, so training is not a hassle it is just business. Some small business owners did all their training 10-30 years ago and training is not something that they are willing to do again. Which is a huge blunder. Allowing employees to advance not only technically but also emotionally, and intellectually is why larger firms are able to lure better talent. What great artisan was without a great mentor? The need for leadership, mentors, and advancement among the more gifted in the community is high. Think of how many kids go to college these days. Once we have grappled with the hard truths of leadership we then must remember, our product in itself can enrich the community.
TOMS – Mission-Based Marketing
The footwear company Toms has made headlines and social media buzz for years donating shoes to inspire consumers to purchase. This company has effectively employed a mission-based marketing strategy. Which is Brilliant. Giving away shoes to the less fortunate in response to sales. Any small business using profits or merchandise as a means to give back to the community and the world abroad gains huge advantages against businesses that are not as philanthropic.
Capture, Capture, Capture
Capture your activity! Do not worry if you are a technological dinosaur, social media is easier than you think. I predict the ‘Going Green Age’ will swing around to ‘The Altruism Age’. Once we have mastered the use of our profits and products to enhance community we must then master using our time and effort.
Fundraising To Gain Market Share & Traction
Hosting fundraisers and benefits connect you to communities that need help and buy your products. It is a win-win! By utilizing your financial- and human capital to enrich the community, you have enriched your own business in the long term. This mindset is an alternative to ‘when things are slow get out and make a deal’, ‘when things are slow get out and create appeal”.
Lead, market with a mission, and help companies out!
By leading our staff, using a mission-based marketing strategy, and hosting community events (small and large), small businesses stand a much greater chance of surviving the unforeseen changes in the ‘globalizing’ marketplace. Without competition, growth becomes stagnant and one of our greatest achievements is advancement by improvement. Let us jump back on the bandwagon and remind the world why small businesses are also to be applauded for striving & thriving communities.