Thoughts from the Snapper: Celebrating Small Business Week

 In Inspiration, Small Business

Last night, I mowed my grass for the first time in years.

Just as I had done hundreds of times before using a lawn service, I followed the usual pattern – creating straight lines across the front yard, skipping across the driveway and circling around the planting area in the side yard where three huge pine trees used to drip sap all over our vehicles.

I also have always used the time aboard my Snapper to plan and dream about ways my business could grow and help me accomplish the goals I have for our family. Many ideas have been born in the bumpy hours riding over the combination of centipede grass, leaves and a few more bare spots than I would prefer.

And while many of those ideas rightfully died before the mower had even cooled off, it was a different feeling yesterday. Instead of “if I can only do this” or “someday, when we have more employees, we can try that,” I realized just how far Fiore Communications has come in the last few years.

The specifics aren’t important, but what is significant is that we have created jobs, we are impacting the community in more direct way and we are helping some incredible clients be more successful so they can do the same.

Because this is National Small Business Week, I thought it would be a good time to express my appreciation for being part of the small-business community. In Florida, that is a pretty large group.

In 2015, there were 395,392 businesses that had between one and 20 employees, and those companies created 92,180 net jobs. Overall, small businesses (which are defined by the Small Business Administration as having fewer than 500 employees) provided jobs to 3.3 million Floridians, which represents 42.2 percent of the total workforce.

I am proud to be part of that number.

And long before I had any aspirations of owning a business, I had the pleasure of working for small businesses that allowed me to grow, learn and develop skills that would serve me well.

So thank you to Brian Rowland of Rowland Publishing for giving an inexperienced marketing editor at the Tallahassee Democrat the opportunity to be part of the first steps in building a publishing empire. And thanks to Rick Oppenheim of RB Oppenheim Associates for teaching me the business and being a great role model for running an agency with professionalism and integrity.

I am grateful for those opportunities and hope I can return the favor someday.

If you own a small business or work in a small business, you are a huge part of what makes our economy go, and I thank you – this week and every week.

Speaking of next week, my yard will need mowing and I have this idea…

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