In the spirit of “Think Globally. Act Locally.” (a phrase which often refers to sustainability and being earth-friendly), today is “Small Business Saturday” (it’s like a Hallmark holiday, but created by American Express). It’s a day-long effort to encourage consumers around the country to “Shop Small.” In fact, Amex actually incentivizes its cardholders with a statement credit for in-person patronage at a small business in one’s local community on this day (note: you must register your card).
What better way to continue to build your Network today than by supporting an entrepreneur in your hometown? Drop by, say “hello,” learn their story, bring along a friend. That’s how we build community.
Earlier this week, I met my friend, Lesa, for coffee. In planning for our visit, Lesa said, “Let’s meet somewhere local.” Of course, it was clear we were getting together somewhere in Kansas City – the point was meeting somewhere which was owned directly by a local business owner.
We selected a cute little coffee shop, Revocup, which describes itself as “a new kind of coffee house featuring authentic, single-origin coffee beans and the espresso based drinks in the freshest form possible.” The founders were born and raised on the mountains of Ethiopia who now make Kansas City their home. They say that “growing up in Ethiopia [where coffee was originally discovered] is like being exposed to a thousand year of coffee culture and traditions.” While Lesa and I were sitting there, my buddy, Alan, walked in. He was in a hurry, rushing to grab his coffee before hitting the road for Thanksgiving with his family out of town. He said, “Hi! Great to see you here – it is my favorite place! I know the owners and sometimes I call ahead and they have my drink ready to go. I love it here.”
Believe me – there are plenty of major retailers and chains that I frequent often, but there is something so special about:
“I know the owners.”
“Let me tell you the amazing story about this place.”
“This is a great little business that supports the livelihood for several families.”
So, what is Local?
- Supporting your hometown businesses which helps the economy in your own community.
- Getting to know your neighbors.
- Building friendships.
Where will you shop today? I’ll meet you there!