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New Small Business of the YearJohn Prue, left, vice president of marketing for Humana, presented the New Small Business of the Year award to Dr. Kelly McCracken, Amazing Smiles of Kansas City. (Photo from Kansas City, Kan., Area Chamber of Commerce)
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Small Business of the YearTodd LaSala, left, partner in Stinson Morrison Hecker and 2013 chairman of the board of the Kansas City, Kan., Area Chamber of Commerce, presented the Small Business of the Year Award to Donna Knopp, general manager of The Legends Outlets. She accepted the award for Red Legacy LLC – Legacy Asset Management. (Photo from Kansas City, Kan., Area Chamber of Commerce)
New Small Business of the Year
Small Business of the Year
National Small Business Week is June 16-21. Last week the Kansas City, Kan., Area Chamber of Commerce recognized area small businesses Friday, June 7, at Sporting Kansas City Park in Village West.
When I owned The Wyandotte West and The Piper Press and its allied shopping guides, most of the advertisers that I called on were small businesses. I got to know most of them quite well—they became—and still are—good friends.
I recall at a similar Chamber of Commerce luncheon several years ago that we shouldn’t really call these folks “small” businesses—that a more appropriate term would be “mainstream” business. I will agree.
There are two kinds of folks in this country—those that are willing to take the risk of being business owners—about 15 percent of the population—and the other 85 percent who are simply content to work for someone.
I had an advantage when I called on small business advertisers because I could identify with their concerns, their challenges and their successes.
Many times small business owners sink their life savings – and possibly take out a second mortgage—to start a business. It often means long hours and grappling with personnel issues.
There are some interesting statistics about U.S. small businesses, according to the Small Business Administration. Small businesses employee nearly half of the employees—about 60 million-- and that accounts for half of the payroll in the United States. And during the last several years, most of the growth in employment in the United States has been from small businesses while many major corporations have trimmed employees.
This year the Chamber of Commerce honored two small businesses. They were Amazing Smiles of Kansas City as the New Small Business of the Year and Red Legacy LLC/Legacy Asset Management as the Small Business of the Year.
Amazing Smiles is a dental practice that Kelly McCracken, a dentist, owns; her practice is at 8915 State Ave.
Red Legacy manages the Legends and is redeveloping the Wyandotte Plaza Shopping Center. Dan Lowe was a principal in developing the Legends and is redeveloping Wyandotte Plaza.
I have often been asked what it takes to start a business and what is the most important thing that will make it successful. It takes a personal commitment. Having adequate capital is important along with a market survey.
Several years ago, the Small Business Administration did a study about why small businesses fail. There were several reasons including poor locations, family problems and poor accounting. But the main reason small businesses failed was that they did not sell enough of their product or service. Simply stated, nothing happens until there is a sale.
Murrel Bland is the former editor of The Wyandotte West and The Piper Press. He is the executive director of Business West.