Recognizing small businesses in the community

It’s that time of year again when communities are encouraged to consider the many benefits that small businesses contribute to their daily lives.

Small Business Week runs Oct. 16th-22nd, and this year’s theme, put forward by the Business Development Bank of Canada, is ‘Measure Up! Shape Your Future.’

Small Business Week is a timely occasion to recognize the hard work and dedication of those who run small businesses in the City.

Oftentimes owners small businesses work around the clock to ensure success and sustainability. They offer employment in our community and many of them give back to Red Deer and surrounding area as well. There is no doubt they are a huge asset and our community wouldn’t be the same without their contributions.

Many small businesses in our community are locally owned and we often hear the importance of shopping local for many reasons. This upcoming week can serve as a good reminder of that as well.

And as Albertans see much economic hardship, it is all the more reason to recognize the contributions of small businesses across the community. Small businesses are not immune to the downturn in the economy, in fact, they may feel the repercussions more than any.

As for Small Business Week, the BDC officially launched the idea across Canada in 1981. The initiative was quickly adopted by Canada’s business community.

For 37 years, the Business Development Bank of Canada has organized BDC Small Business Week in recognition of the contributions and achievements of Canada’s entrepreneurs. Events held during the week bring entrepreneurs together at conferences, luncheons and trade fairs across the country where they have the opportunity to learn, network and enjoy themselves in the company of their peers.

According to the BDC, small and medium-sized businesses are the cornerstone of the Canadian economy. They account for 99.7% of all Canadian companies and employ more than 90% of private sector workers.

Another vital part of small businesses is the freedom and opportunity they give people to flex their creative muscles and explore a variety of ventures. Entrepreneurial spirit thrives in the setting of a small business, where folks can invest in their business plans to bring their own dreams to fruition.

In an increasingly competitive business environment, innovation is often the key to staying afloat and relevant. Clearly, a healthy and strong encouragement of entrepreneurship fuels the drive to stimulate those ‘innovative senses.’

Ultimately entrepreneurship, as the BDC points out, is built on the foundations finding the right people to work with, the latest technology to utilize and the most cutting edge business skills to, “Beat the competition both here and abroad.”

Small Business Week is all about those things – and also for taking the time to praise those dedicated men and women who pour so much time and energy into making their small ventures work. Their efforts enrich the community more than they will perhaps ever know.

The Red Deer and District Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a couple of events during Small Business Week including the HR in a Box Workshop Series on Oct. 17th. The event series consists of six different workshops with three different expert speakers per workshop. This particular workshop is the second in the series. The topic is retention strategies – employer value proposition, onboarding/orientation and ongoing engagement as well as total compensation. To register, visit the Chamber’s web site.

As well next week, we will celebrate those small businesses and the contributions they provide our community during the annual Business of the Year Awards, hosted by the Chamber, and we encourage the community to celebrate along with us.

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