But we all know that numbers aren't the whole story. I wanted to follow up with some perspective on the business owners that these facts and figures represent.
I don't know where the following originated. It's been posted many places without an attribution. But it hits home.
When you buy from a small business owner you support local families and local jobs.
When you buy from a small business, you aren't helping a CEO buy a third vacation home. You are helping a little girl get dance lessons, a boy play hockey, a mom put food on the table, a dad pay a mortgage, or a student pay for college. Our customers are our neighbours and our shareholders… they are the ones we strive to make happy.
Most small business owners are hands-on, working long hours every day. They care about providing great service. And relationships matter—some become like extended family.
I personally go out of my way to buy from local businesses over chains, even if it does sometimes mean paying a premium. It's important to keep them around.
These small business owners and operators hire our kids and grow employment opportunities for everyone within their community. Even with the long hours they put in their own businesses, small business owners are active volunteers in charitable organizations, freely giving their time, energy and knowledge. Their level of commitment goes way beyond that of the average Canadian. Non-profit organizations receive an average 250% more support* from smaller business owners than they do from large businesses.
So I say, show them some appreciation back—choose local, independently owned businesses first!