Small businesses account for about 50% of the Gross Domestic Product in the United States year on year. In 2004, that figure was US $11.6 Trillion. Not bad, and certainly no small business. To me, the term "small business" has always conveyed negative connotations. It bugs me. 

Let's look at the that little word:


  1. Of limited size; of comparatively restricted dimensions; not big. 
  2. not great in amount, degree, extent, duration, value, etc.: a small salary. 
  3. having but little land, capital, power, influence, etc., or carrying on business or some activity on a limited scale: a small enterprise. 
  4. of minor importance, moment, weight, or consequence: a small problem. 


baby, bantam, bitty, cramped, diminutive,humble, immature, inadequate, inconsequential,inconsiderable, insufficient, limited, little, meager,microscopic, mini, miniature, minuscule, minute,modest, narrow, paltry, petite, petty, picayune,piddling, pint-sized, pitiful, pocket-sized, poor,puny, runty, scanty, scrubby, short, shrimp,slight, small-scale, stunted, teensy, teeny, toy,trifling, trivial, undersized, unpretentious, wee,young 

Not very flattering, is it. A similar situation is faced when you refer to yourself as being "self-employed." -you may as well say your are "self-unemployed" -a vagrant. That's been my experience. 

Time to rebrand these terms. Let's take a look: 

Instead of "small" business, how about 'agile' or 'successful' business, and instead of "self-employed" how about 'Independently wealthy' -hey, even if you aren't rich yet, you are independently responsible for you wealth, so sounds good to me. 

You are not small, you are part of a multi-trillion dollar business network, without all the negative baggage that comes along with being a juggernaut. Big business constantly tries to emulate what you do naturally. The independent business's agility beats big business hands down at many levels, not least of which is your quick decision making capabilities, front line perspectives and adaptability. 

The truth is that most "normal" people can not begin to relate to the commitment that you, the Agile Business owner, brings to the table. They just don't believe in themselves enough. They haven't got the guts to put their balls on the line. 

Contrary to myth, If you own a business or will start one, the odds are largely in your favor. According to Business Week', small business failures stats show that less than 1% of new businesses file for bankruptcy annually, about 5% do so over the first ten years of starting a business. 

"With a divorce rate of 50%, you've got a better chance succeeding in business than marriage. "

Most regular people eventually take the plunge and get married, but don't have the guts to go for the glory in business. Its ironic that most divorces are due to arguments over money, not enough of it, when odds were good that starting a successful business together could have made money a non-issue. It's a circular reference I know, but I thought it was important to highlight the fact that people worry too much about what will happen when starting and ending new ventures, instead of doing something productive in the meantime. 

The truth is that people like you with the guts to even think about going into business are smarter than the average bear. Complete failure is always a risk, but it's a risk that is normally managed well enough to know when to get out of a business that is going in the wrong direction. Cutting losses as it were, along with transfers of ownership, account for 60% of business discontinuance over a ten year period. 

Businesses are opportunities and opportunities are transient by definition. It's unrealistic to expect that a great business opportunity today will necessarily be viable in 10 years time. 

Be sure to take my Proprietary Business Feasibility Test to see if you've got what it takes to make your new business idea a success.


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