5 Advantages of Being a Small Business
Size does matter -- and sometimes, staying small can give your business an advantage over larger, less nimble corporations.
In an age where emails have replaced handwritten letters, texts have replaced phone calls, and Skype sessions have replaced face-to-face meetings, people are drawn more and more to small businesses that can offer a personal touch.
Staying small can give your business an advantage over larger, less nimble corporations. Let us count the ways.
- Implement Changes Quickly and Effectively
Keeping the business small facilitates fluid communication between management, staff and customers, so that everybody is on the same page. We are able to implement changes and pivot quickly if something is not working, said Jordan Kaplan, founder of Petaholics, a premier pet care company in New York City.
While large organizations may have lots of obligations both with contracts and franchisees, smaller businesses can change and replace products at the drop of a hat. This ensures that customers receive the best service available, with the latest products and most innovative tools.
Cheryl Clayton, owner of Green & Clean Maid Service, a non-toxic cleaning service in the Atlanta area, found this to be true when it comes to green cleaning. Its easy for us to step in, choose a new product, test it out, and if were pleased, replace all existing products within the year.
- Maintain Relationships with Employees
Small business owners are also great at to maintaining personal relationships with employees. "We really get to know our staff and what their goals are -- what drives them, says Kaplan. We have lower than average turnover for our industry because of this.
Additionally, a smaller staff means more effective meetings: every employee has the chance to make his or her voice heard. To ensure the lines of communication are always open, Alitias Animals, a pet service company in the New York area, keeps in constant touch with employees, thereby strengthening trust within the company. We are in touch via text every day with our staff. They know that we are available to answer any of their questions or concerns immediately, says business owner Joshua Cary, whos also the founder of PetSittingology, a site dedicated to helping pet care business owners.
Read more about the Benefits of Owning a Small Business
- Closer Relationships with Clients
Small businesses can form closer relationships with clients and personalize services, something that large corporations spend time and money trying to do.
We learn our clients story, we learn their pets story, and then they become part of our story, says Cary.
Communication with clients can also occur more frequently and effectively when there are a smaller number of more dedicated employees involved. Communication both within the company and with customers is quick and direct, says Clayton. There is a high amount of knowledge exchange between the customer, the cleaner, and myself. It's personal. It makes a huge difference in the quality of service.
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- Have a Consistent Brand Voice and Personality
Customers love quality and consistency, and that kind of experience is easier to guarantee as a small business owner, who can convey every aspect of their brand strategy to a hand-selected team of dedicated employees.
We spend time explaining Petaholics policies and procedures, and convey our stress on attention to detail, says Kaplan.
- Keep Business, Money and Jobs Local
Buying local is important to consumers who want to feel like their hard-earned dollars matter to the businesses theyre patronizing.
In todays world, we want to make sure that a lot of our dollars are kept local -- and that is the case with a small business, says Clayton. Even though a large multi-chain creates jobs on a local level, a lot of money still goes elsewhere. All of our money is kept here, bolstering our local economy.
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Ilana Dadras is a writer and artist living in Queens. She enjoys picnicking and spending time with her cat, Rabbit, even though she is not sure he reciprocates this feeling. She does not own a small business, but if she did, it would be a shaved ice shop.