Annotated Slides: Building a Small Business Ecosystem

This presentation was given to several organizations this fall, and it was designed to highlight the need for a fundamental shift in thinking about economic development initiatives — shifting from a linear, incentives-driven, mechanical approach to instead focusing economic development efforts on strengthening a community’s small business ecosystem. This presentation was designed to introducing a paradigm shift, so it’s not a how-to manual, more like an introductory chapter.    But if you are frustrated with the lack of meaningful impact that your community’s economic development strategies seem to be having, this presentation might help you frame and articulate a different way of doing it.

Small business ecosystem annotated Nov 2012

If you are really diehard (or hard up for entertainment), you can also watch one of the versions of this presentation here.  I did cut off a few slides from the end after giving this presentation because I felt like it was getting redundant, so the video is a little different from the annotated presentation.  But either one will give you the basics.



One thought on “Annotated Slides: Building a Small Business Ecosystem”

  1. Della,

    Thank you for consistently offering thoughtful topics and content. Resiliency is certainly a main characterisitc of a healthy community reflecting a strong sense of connection within the business community and across other elements of a community. Some communities are especially agile, able to recruit new businesses, attend to exisitng businesses and cultivate new enterprises as well. This is an ideal situation.

    My employer, a regional economic development group used to actively recruit manufacturing firms with only marginal success. Therefore, your Small Business Ecosystem presentation comports with what my regional organization has been doing over the past several years, even as we still make loans to and equity investments in small businesses. We have given numerous presentations to communities about entrepreurial ecosystems standing behind that message with a facilty offering affordable co-working and more permanent space as well as staff wielding a robust resource tool box.

    Business succession planning is one often overlooked aspect of economic development that would contribute to community resiliency. Some businesses have matured and run their life cycle but others still have vigor that can harnessed and re-energized to create more economic value if only the owners (perhaps spurred on by a local economic developer) looked forward enough to plan for new ownership.

    I appreciate the challenges you present.

    Stephen Taylor, CEcD

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