Carolyn's Daily Posts: 2011

June 21, 2011

Small Business Defined



While no one can exactly define what a “small business” is, one reasonable definition is those businesses with fewer than 100 employees.*

     Small business—I’ve always struggled with the definition.

     While living in Atlanta, Georgia, for three years, I had a small business. It was very small. It was proprietor-owned with no employees. It had a gross income of less than $400.00 per month—just enough to enable our family of four to enjoy some of Atlanta’s amenities while my husband Monte was a seminary student at Candler School of Theology at Emory University.

     Yet—a very important factor—I was required to meet all the paperwork and costs of operating a business that all “small” businesses had to meet. It was quite burdensome, yet I wanted to remain “legal.”


     Sometimes small businesses (employing up to 100 people) grow from seeds of mini-businesses like mine. However, the requirements are so stiff that they discourage individuals from experimenting to see if there is potential for an idea to grow that way. Perhaps there are entrepreneurs who remain underground, operating illegally, because the paperwork requirements are unreasonable at this level of doing business. A less cumbersome means of being legal would benefit both the government and the individual entrepreneur.


If you use that definition, can you guess how many companies in the United States have more than 100 employees—in other words, are big businesses?

Just 109,000.

That’s right—less than one-half of 1 percent…*


Give them the respect they’re due, Rhonda Abrams, Greensburg Tribune-Review, May 31, 2011, pp B7



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