I’m still amazed how in this day in age global connections appear so seemingly easily. I’m old enough that this new way of communicating still feels like magic. With the click of a mouse, any of us have opportunity to reach out, be heard and work toward the common good. Ten years ago, I would not have imagined working across distance with so many diverse people to build stronger ties and contribute positively to my community. We are witnessing an unprecedented communications revolution. From the first scratches on the cave paintings in Lascaux to the invention of the printing press, fast forward to today, and we are still working toward that common objective, to connect and relate.
In January we got a call from a great gal named, Bess from the Small Business Global Team at Facebook. Their mission: to gather up small business owners from across the country to brainstorm how to better support small business through the use of Facebook. They intended to do this through a new initiative, the inaugural Small and Medium Business Council and they asked us to participate and offer our ideas and input.
Us! They asked us. Can you believe it? A small, scratch that, a microscopic-small business from a tiny little town in northern Illinois. That is what I mean when I say I’m amazed about the communications revolution afoot.
When we arrived I was excited and thrilled to see others too, were representing from very small towns and small businesses such as ourselves. They gathered people and businesses from a broad spectrum of size, location and business type. What better way to get out of the starting blocks, a diverse cross sampling from across the country.
You may ask, ‘Small business, Facebook, great, what’s the big deal?’ In my mind, it is a big deal, a huge deal. In fact, it’s a close to ‘28 million strong big deal’. Over 50% of the population works in a small business. Small businesses have generated over 65% of the net new jobs in our country since 1995. Millions of these businesses are now on Facebook, the largest platform on the globe, seeking to expose, strengthen and remain competitive. Small businesses are the economic backbone of our country. It they thrive, we thrive. In this economic climate, when we take action to support small business, we leverage opportunity to rebuild our nation and create a solid future for our children.
Facebook recognizes the value small business plays in our economy. They know the increasingly important position their platform occupies in building thriving small businesses. They also recognize the light speed rate of change the platform undergoes and how that inadvertently creates gaps of awareness. These gaps they seek to bridge. And it is with this newly formed council they intend to connect and activate positive change. In the first moments of the summit it was made clear, they want to hear from us what we need from them in order to do our jobs better and realize success.
As we embark on this new adventure, over the next 6 to 12 months, I’m excited and optimistic about the groundwork we will create together, the connections that will get forged while reaching out across the country to others. When we work together we thrive together.