MORE and more people are becoming aware and educated about the importance of small businesses. Some people may find operating a small business venture is best suited for them, rather than sitting in an office or working under the management of others. Other people might have an existing passion or liking for something and they realised that it can generate income. I am a bit of both. Yes, I also have my very own small business. Apart from writing, I have a passion for make-up artistry and body art. As such, I have developed that very passion into a business venture called MArt. I have been trodding this path since the year 2017 and I think it is only fitting that I share my experience with you all.
Starting a business venture on your own is not as easy as it sounds. Unless it is a partnership or you have very supportive friends and families, you automatically become the business’ founder, CEO, director, treasurer, receptionist, public relations officer and so much more. You are generally in control of almost everything and sometimes, it can be quite a struggle. While that might be overwhelming, there are many positives to such a venture. For starters, small businesses help to blossom local economies and keep the flow of money closer to home. The more small local businesses a community has, the more money will flow and more self-employed jobs will be created. There is something about small businesses that I call the ‘warm touch.’ From the creative posters and business cards, cozy store spaces, to hand-written letters for customers and even personalised packages; it’s all ‘warm touched’ and thoughtful. I am not saying that bigger enterprises do not do the same, but a small business tends to pay mind to the smaller details and customisation.
Tips and advice can go a long way to help you and your small business. In fact, that is my first tip to you all; researching tips, ideas and success stories of other small businesses, you will surely learn a lot. When I first started my small business, I asked myself a simple question that completely changed the playing grounds for me and my business. That question was, “what do I want to bring to the table that isn’t there already or that’s different?”. You do not have to share the answer with others, but when you answer it; always keep the answer in mind and use it as your motto/driving force. Your business should also be formed on a great passion and purpose. If you’re truly passionate about something then you won’t automatically give up on it, even when tough times are near. Likewise, if you are passionate about your business’ cause/purpose then eventually, you’ll get bored of it and that is as honest as I can get. I also urge small business owners to allow record-keeping to become your best friend. Finances, stock, products, profits, etc. should all be accounted for and should have physical evidence and proof of their existence. Many small local businesses make their big debut on something we’re all very familiar with; social media. Online advertisement blur the lines and gaps in geography and time. It allows you to expand your product/service to persons outside of your community. Facebook and Instagram pages, blog posts, YouTube videos, website and domain, online promotions, discount codes, cyber-sales, online shopping– just to name a few, are all great ways that will help your small business flourish even more!
This is a very important conversation and I think it deserves to be discussed a bit more, expanding the lingo to what and who we know right here in Guyana. We ought to realise the importance of small businesses in Guyana, its economic impacts as well as, the overall, positive influence it has on the lives of the owners and their families. It opens a door for many opportunities and it is a means of receiving an honest income, through hard work and determination. I urge you all to keep a look-out for the second part of this article, as I further discuss the said topic. To my fellow small-business owners, I do hope this serves as an inspiration to you all and if you’re reading this to gain a bit more insight on the topic, then I hope I was helpful. See you next week and don’t forget; “this year, 2020, we will support our local Guyanese businesses!”.