POSTED BY: | September 2, 2020

The keystone of a vibrant community is at the interaction of the local residents and local businesses. Small business is an economic engine of community life. It is an engine that provides energy and opportunity to local residences. Local businesses strive to serve their communities through the provision of goods, services and entertainment. More importantly they strengthen communities by delivering tax revenues to local governments that enable quality educational options, valued community programming as well as economic stability that sustains housing values. These basic ingredients improve the quality of life for many that in turn fosters residential growth. A win-win outcome for all.

This type of outcome must start however, with a concerted effort on the behalf of civic leadership to attract and support the Entrepreneur at heart!   Individuals with a passion and a dream to enhance the lives of others who wish to engage and enjoy the result of their passion. But it seems that what should be the easy civic option is often a barrier that keeps smart and confident entrepreneurs from taking the necessary steps to launch an impassioned live journey.

Local Governments need to survey and identify what their citizens need, what and desire. Then, with a demand side model in hand, begin to build strategic relationships with entrepreneurs supported by a fast track permitting and matching grants program.

Next, we citizens must respond by making a concerted effort to participate in all that the local business community offers. It is easy to justify shopping national businesses or on-line offers in an effort to save money. Something we all should strive to do more often, Yet, supporting local business efforts will yield a holistic return that will pay dividends to all.

I imagine that many, like myself, got their first job working for a small to mid-sized local business owner. One that was more than willing to pay-it-forward to the community that supported them by supporting a starry eyed novice that needed a significant amount of hands on mentorship to learn how to achieve sustainable independence. Now it’s pay-back time!

Through the years I’ve had the pleasure of working with business leaders focused upon improving their customer experiences, now I think it is time to focus our collective attention toward working with civic leadership to improve entrepreneurial experiences.  Live long and prosper.


Jim Ittenbach