Supporting local business is something I am very passionate about, and thank you for allowing me the opportunity to voice my opinions on a topic we are all familiar with. I never realized the importance of ‘Think local, act global’ until I started traveling on a regular basis. They say traveling is an eye opener and it sure was for me. Driving through local communities and seeing abandoned buildings that were once thriving businesses is extremely unnerving. Sure you could argue that it’s just the natural course of competing in a Global Economy, and casualties are going to happen regardless of the current economic or political sphere, but statistics on unemployment and national wage averages suggest something far more sinister. Things aren’t the same as they used to be. The disappearing middle class and thousands of jobs moving overseas means a very bleak future for a children unless we do something to change, and a small step you can do to help today is supporting a local business.
Help Somebody live their dream
Imagine owning your own small business.,..Wow! How awesome would that be!
Most of us lack the discipline to ‘Live the American dream’. It takes extreme dedication and devotion to develop a skill set, come up with a business plan, save for a down payment, apply for a loan, scout a location, purchase equipment, hire the right staff, develop a customer
base and consistently deliver top quality products and services. Those who do make it a reality are far from living the perfect life and it’s definitely not a ‘get rich quick scheme. Getting up at the crack of dawn every single day to clean and prepare, working 90+ hours a week on your feet, and it’s literally years before you can take a small break or a vacation, if at all. Most consider themselves lucky just to be able to support their families and it is better than working for someone else, but only marginally.
What can we do as members of the community to help? Simply go in to a local small business and buy a meal, or get your hair done, or your car serviced, or purchase an appliance. It really is that simple!
Reduce the power of multinationals and monopolies.
We all know the story of the David and Goliath’s. Huge multinational organizations creeping into the community, pushing out local businesses with their vast product range and cheap prices and small business really doesn’t stand a hope in hell of competing. It’s true that these huge companies did start out as local shops, but these days, they are so far removed from their roots they are not even in the same ballpark.
They import huge amounts of products from overseas developing nations taking manufacturing jobs out of America, they push out local competition closing local businesses in America and in return they offer a few cashier positions and fill our landfills with cheap garbage. This degrades our society and takes away our sense of local identity. This country was built on American intelligence, ingenuity and invention and the buck should stop here, but instead we give our power and money away to overseas nations which leaves us weak and vulnerable. This is a bad situation now, and it’s going to be A LOT worse for future generations to come.
Prices really are reasonable
There is a common misconception out there that going to a non fast-food restaurant to eat is expensive, but it really doesn’t have to be. I’m not talking about these ‘organic, vegan, luxury, gourmet specialty places that you need to sell your car just to buy lunch, unless of course it’s for a special treat, I’m talking about local diners, deli’s, bars and restaurants that rely predominately on local traffic to pay the bills. Most of these places offer lunch and dinner specials and work out to be the same or cheaper than fast food. I normally go and buy a sandwich for $3.00 and a drink and it’s great. You’d be hard pressed to find a fast food meal for under that price.
It’s not just food either, you if look around you will find a myriad of local products and services with extremely competitive pricing. Don’t just take the easy way out because it’s more convenient. Spend the extra few minutes to get better products and services and help out your local neighbors.
Healthier food options
It’s no secret that fast food is just nasty, notoriously bad for you and chock full of preservatives. It’s also a known fact that people who consume a high amount of preservatives and pass away, don’t have the same rate of normal human decomposition. Gaaa! You are what you eat and if you eat preservatives you become preserved yourself. How weird and gross is that!
Instead of opting for chemical junk, east something made by hand at a local eatery. Your body will thank you, in this life and the next 😉
Small business, big pride, better quality
Some of the best food I’ve ever eaten have been at these cheap hole-in-the-wall greasy spoon diners littered around the country and that’s no lie. Think about it like this, you have somebody who is constantly told by family and friends that their food is fantastic and they should open a restaurant AND they do AND now you get to eat it! yummy yumm!
Business ownership brings with it a huge sense of pride and self worth and it truly does shine through in the end product. These are the people who get up at 5am in the morning and prepare everything by hand for the day, they are not pulling frozen junk off the back of a truck, and some even source produce locally so it’s a double win for everyone.
Local business owners also tend to care more about the little guy. There has been occasions where my car has broken down and a local mechanic has worked with me after hours to get the issue resolved quickly and cheaply. Good luck getting that kind of service at the dealership!
Try something new
Because small businesses don’t have set menus and don’t have to answer to franchisers or ‘higher-up’s’, they are more willing to experiment, listen to public opinion and deliver. They offer specials every day so you can try a new meal with little risk, are more open to take substitution requests and genuinely want to please.
They take the time to research the local demographics personally and cater to you specifically. It’s one of the few last strong holds wh
ere creativity can flow undeterred. Caramel Lavender Latte and rose water cake? hmm try it, you may love it! 🙂
Meet new people
This is a worthwhile part of supporting local businesses, you get to know and even become friends with business owners. It’s so reassuring to know that if something breaks down you know someone personally, who will come and help. As a single person this is extremely valuable to me. When i first moved to this community i took the time to go around and introduce myself to local businesses i knew i would need assistance from and it’s paid off extremely well.
I also enjoy meeting business owners when I’m on the road. They are invested in their communities and usually know the history well and offer good suggestions for things to see and do in and around the local area.
Feel good about helping the community
I’m all for capitalism and free market economy, but I’ve never been a greedy person. I believe that we need to once again give room for the little guys to compete in a fair and open marketplace and our communities AND country will be much better for it. How do we do this? By supporting locally made products and local businesses.
Know that when you support local businesses you can feel good inside. You are helping grow and develop somebody’s dream, and allowing them to support their families and communities. In turn they are providing you with a great meal, a well maintained car, personalized services, and a reasonably priced commodity. Whatever your needs are please look at local businesses first, for your community, your nation and the future of our children.
Thank you for reading 🙂