As we look ahead to the next decade and what it holds in store for Small Business in the US we have to ask ourselves…“Are we becoming complacent in our success?” The last four years of the 1990s have seen a major upheaval of the “business as usual” mentality among our Nation’s leaders. We saw an unusual uptick of voters in the past election who had been avoiding the polls for many years. They felt as though their votes just did not matter. This complacent attitude is one of the primary reasons that our nation’s past and current leadership have been able to push their agendas through party lines.
What started as a means to decentralize power within government and usher in a true democracy including state and citizens, has today turned into an almost “childish rivalry” between two factors in the pursuit of idealism driven by lobbyist and big business. It has become less about the people and more about party lines and who can “beat” the other. The problem here is NOT the politicians but rather us as American citizen’s not standing up and fighting for what we believe in.
I’m not promoting one party over the other, and firmly believe that the structure of our political process is viable and can work for the betterment of our country. What I also believe is that we put too much emphasis on trying to separate our nation along party lines not taking into consideration the issues. I believe this is the primary reason for the introduction and growing popularity of the Independent party. These individuals vote with their “heart” rather than being driven by political ideology or partisanship. Unfortunately, these individuals are locked out of voting in the primary elections, so their voting choice is limited to whoever wins in the primaries.
Thomas Edison said, “We shall have no better conditions in the future if we are satisfied with all those which we have at present.”
As we look back over the past 120 years, we have seen a new decade introduce a new president six other times. Each decade brought with it major economic changes.
- The 1900s ushered in the Progressive Era as we faced domestic and global challenges, as the US sought to define its internal role in the world under President McKinley.
- President Woodrow Wilson ushered in the 1920s and our Free Market Economy as we saw our nation’s GDP rise from $687.7 billion to $977.0 billion.
- President Franklin Roosevelt, on the heal of the Great Depression in 1940, saw Big Business joining forces with the government in the arms manufacturing business. To protect their investments in Europe, big business leaders took up the baton to arm democratic countries during World War I.
- The 1960s saw an increase in consumer optimism as discount stores began to emerge and inexpensive fast-food restaurants. Large corporations merged to become mega-companies. America was becoming less reliant on industrial and manufacturing industries, and high-tech electronics led to the dawn of the Information Age under President Eisenhower.
- President Ronald Reagan introduced the 1980s in the middle of a recession. His efforts in ending the Cold War and Communism led to the end of our recession. To stabilize a federal government that he believed had become too large and interfering, he cut social programs and worked to reduce or eliminate government regulations. He also focused on our defense program and military budget increases, causing our deficit to jump from $74 billion to $221 billion in 1986.
- 2000 began on the heal of the Dot-com bubble burst with President Clinton and the beginning of the 21st Century. The past 10 years have seen a major national and global recession leading to consumer uncertainty that would last for almost a decade.
As we move into another election year we are faced with a dilemma. President Trump has thrown us a curveball over the past four years. Not part of the political “Good Ole Boy” mentality, he has us pushing the “status quo” boundaries. Whether we are a fan of the current leadership or not, as business owners it is our responsibility to make sure President Trump hears our voice. Our local political representatives are the resources for doing just this.
Small business in the US is what drives our economy. No longer does big business hold the reigns. As small and micro business owners we must pick up the baton and make sure our voices are heard. Our allies are those in government who have been where we are. Not those who have skated by on the political train. It’s important to get involved at the municipal and state levels so our voices can be heard and carried to Congress. It is important to do your due diligence to find out what our city, county, and state representatives stand for and understand the policies and referendums being presented before congress.
What do we have to look forward to this year and this decade? Although our economic patterns are historically cyclical, complacency in the status quo is not the answer. Looking to the past to provide answers for the future is a disaster waiting to happen. Martin Luther King said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
MarketAtomy LLC has partnered with Send’Or Capital Ltd, a boutique investment firm to bring a weekly podcast program called Charged Up Studio to launch Super Tuesday, March 3rd, 2020. Charged Up Studio focuses on keeping small and medium business owners abreast of current economic, political and business issues that could impact business success. Delivered in a simple, straightforward format, Charged Up Studio is committed to changing the economic outlook for small and medium businesses in the next decade. Watch for more information to come soon. If you would like to find out how you can be a guest speaker on Charged Up Studio email firstname.lastname@example.org