In light of some of the heated rhetoric that defines the waning days of the 2012 presidential campaign, if you support President Obama you might believe his defeat would usher in an epic wave of unregulated commerce that will decimate vulnerable populations. If you support Governor Romney perhaps you fear his defeat would mean that closet socialists will reshape America’s social compact in a manner akin to the Soviet Union in the 1920s.
Rational small business people don’t think this way.
Theirs is a nose to the grind mentality that builds on the proven foundation of a determined spirit, solid skills and business savvy. In the last five years as the U.S. economy continued to improve, innovative small business leaders were driving innovation, creating jobs and reaping financial success. Most turned personal passion into profit by starting small and dreaming big while skillfully engaging free social media tools to build market share.
Undeterred by concerns about taxes, regulation and protecting intellectual property rights, in the last five years scores of small business leaders found success by transforming the power of their ideas into innovative products and services. Consider the work of these small business innovators.
- Potomac Research Group is a growing independent research firm, formed in 2008, that provides insights on federal legislative activities, regulatory policies and market analysis to institutional investors. Suzanne Clark is the founding CEO. Prior to forming PRG, Clark served as President of the National Journal Group, publisher of some of Washington’s most esteemed publications including the National Journal and CongressDaily.
- INC. magazine features a “Top Black Entrepreneurs of 2012 Inc. 5000” list that features a diverse array of entrepreneurs from across the U.S. Janice Adams, Founder and CEO of JMA Solutions of Washington, D.C. ranked #128 with revenues of $10.6M in 2011. Adams found her passion by turning her 23 years of Air Force service into what she describes as a family environment that also employs many of her fellow veterans.
- In addition to these local innovators, last week Alan Hall, a Forbes magazine contributor, venture capitalist and self-described skeptic on the impact of small businesses as leading job creators, issued a call for founders of small businesses to share their “aha” moments that inspired their decision to follow their entrepreneurial dreams. Hall worked with an associate, Cheryl Conner, to issue this challenge and, to their surprise, in less than 24 hours more than 200 company founders responded! The CEOs they heard from ranged from a husband and wife team who turned their love of Pac-Man into a global company, Arkadium, that employees 140 employees to a frustrated musician who turned his love of music into a passion for building well crafted gear for musicians at affordable prices. Today it’s a global company, Peavey Electronics, that employes 14,000.
So, what’s your passion?