If you live in Texas, this map should make you smile: along with a select few, the Lone Star State scored an A+ in the 2017 national survey of small business friendliness. This means that starting a small business, hiring workers, and staying in business is easier in Texas than almost anywhere else. Ohio, Florida, and Tennessee scored in the B-range, while some major coastal states struggled to get Cs.
Of all the "friendly" states, Texas is unrivaled in terms of population, wealth and economic power. Because of that, although the other states have a duty to improve, Texans have a responsibility to keep setting a good example!
Why is small business friendliness so important?
You'd be surprised how many iconic American companies started in a garage or home kitchen: Ben & Jerry's, Yankee Candle, and Amazon are all on that list. SC Johnson, the company that makes Ziploc and Windex, has been family-owned for over 100 years. All of these companies were able to grow and enrich the whole country's economy, thanks to American small business friendliness.
Support for small local businesses also keeps Americans employed. The fact is, the bigger a company gets, the more likely it is to manufacture overseas. There's only one thing that can truly curb that problem: local support for American businesses. That's why all Americans should practice small business friendliness!
I like the idea, but I don't have time to check my whole shopping cart for "made in the USA" stickers.
That's okay - you don't have to be a fanatic. Here are two really simple things that can make a huge difference:
1. Choose American companies for bigger purchases.
Many Americans support the U.S. economy with their car purchases, but they don't think to buy an American-made TV, or an American-made set of pots and pans for newlyweds. It's worth taking the time to make sure those couple hundred bucks are fueling the U.S. economy. The USA Love List is a great resource for finding USA-made items.
2. Keep your own list of local businesses to recommend to friends and family.
Word-of-mouth referral will always be one of the friendliest things you can do for local businesses! It's also extremely easy, now that you can add a business to your list with one tap of the "Like" button.
If you haven't yet, you can start by following Texas-based Windmill Ceiling Fans on Facebook. They're true craftsmen (and women!) making a beautiful product right here in Texas.