Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Small talk...

We own a small business. Actually, we "inherited" a small business from my father when he retired several years ago. He started the electrical contracting company in the mid 1960's, offering commercial, industrial and some residential installations and repairs to our customers, and headaches, heartaches and hallelujahs to us.

There are great (and frustrating) consequences of small business ownership. It has been said that when you own a small business it owns you. I hope that because we are professing Christians that will never be spoken of us, but I have seen the toll that the stresses of attempting to meet payroll each week, treat our employees fairly, keep our customers happy, pay our vendors on time, generate leads and secure jobs AND make sure that Uncle Sam receives every cent he requires of us has taken on my 12-14 hour a day working husband.

Despite the associated difficulties, I am grateful to live in a land where anyone who is willing to make the necessary sacrifices can own a business. Statistics show that most new small businesses fail, but my dad was a bulldog who was undaunted by the fiery trials familiar to those whose entrepreneurial spirit compels them to take the leap toward ownership.

My post high school educational training did not involve business management or accounting. In fact, if anyone had told me that one day I would keep the books and manage an office for our company, I would have laughed at the "ridiculous" notion. Now, I'd have it no other way. I love working with my husband. We are a team. And this job allows me to blog while the payables are printing without fear of termination. ;)

So why am I blogging about a small business today? Because I am concerned by what I'm reading related to the future for businesses like ours in the U.S. Not in terms of our personal "prosperity" because we are not among those who make enough profit to have our "wealth redistributed," but in terms of the ever increasing governmental impingement that becomes a demotivator to those of us who work so hard to provide job security for our employees and quality service to our customers. If small business owners become too frustrated to endure the hassle, then many, many jobs are in danger of disappearing.

Town Hall posted an article by John Stossel today that provides a little more insight for those who share my concern. There are many issues related to the troubles we are currently facing economically and one would be naive to ignore that corporate greed has been a tremendous contributing factor, but small businesses are our economy's backbone and it would be equally egregious to discount the importance of ensuring the ability of these entities to function without extraneous, unncessary governmental intrusion.

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