Therefore, we built Michigan’s Small Business Jobs Insight to document this growth and report the impact these jobs are having on our state’s economic comeback.
There is plenty of statistical evidence backing up our belief in the power of small business job growth—you can review it yourself at www.youreconomy.org. This Edward Lowe Foundation website has the facts that show that in the past decade, when big businesses were shedding jobs as fast as possible, small businesses were actually creating employment.
But in the political battle for public opinion (and votes), it’s not enough to just have statistics. As good as youreconomy.org is, the data by necessity lag by a year or two. We need to show policymakers and voters what’s happening on the ground right now, and provide stories about real small business owners filling real jobs all across the state. That’s where michiganjobsinsight.com comes in.
The key elements of michiganjobsinsight.com include:
• A ticker that displays jobs reported by growing small businesses in the current month
• A pie chart that shows the percentage per Michigan region of the total jobs reported per month
• Total jobs reported for the year to date
• The top 10 industries for small business growth
• Links to individual stories of regional small business job growth
Michigan has put tremendous public policy tools in place, from business tax reform to improvements in the regulatory climate to a new emphasis on economic gardening, that help lay a foundation of entrepreneurial business and employment growth. We know that small business owners are taking advantage of the improved business climate fostered by these public policy changes to fill job openings and accelerate job creation; michiganjobsinsight.com reports where these jobs are and how they are benefitting everyone in our state.
The website, michiganjobsinsight.com, is not a scientific count of every job created in the small business community. If anything, these totals probably under report the full, dramatic growth of small business jobs across the state. To enhance our reporting, we ask mid-Michigan small business owners to engage in the process by informing us about their stories of jobs being filled. Go to michiganjobsinsight.com and click on the link in the middle of the page that says “IS YOUR COMPANY GROWING? LET US KNOW.” After you fill out the form, you’ll be contacted by a reporter for the Issue Media Group online business news publications for possible inclusion in one of their upcoming newsletters. You can help us report on jobs being filled and get great visibility for your small business.
Here are some mid-Michigan examples of small businesses adding jobs:
• Wine bar set to open this summer in Downtown Lansing, will add nine jobs: P Squared Wine Bar will have a comfortable, living room-type feel, and will feature a café menu of sandwiches, light appetizers and flatbread pizza.
• MBI brings BioAcrylic closer to $10 billion market, grows staff by 20 percent with 37 people now employed at the firm.
• Edge Partnerships moves into 3,400-square-foot Downtown Lansing location, adds four staff members: The increased space was a necessity as Edge Partnerships has grown significantly during their five years of operation.
• Mason manufacturer invests $38 million in expansion, to add 110 jobs: The 110 new jobs will be in addition to the 330 currently employed by the manufacturing facility, which makes an innovative kind of steel beam for vehicles that is harder and lighter than traditional steel.
• Chick’n & Fix’ns bring 28 jobs, high-quality chicken to Lansing: The 2,100-square-foot location on South Cedar Street near Edgewood Boulevard in Lansing seats 56 diners.
There’s a lot at stake in this effort. In the face of ferocious opposition, Gov. Snyder and Republican lawmakers last fall took a big political risk in passing business tax reform. This summer, leading up to the fall elections, the political opponents of small business growth policies will be spinning their propaganda and claiming that business tax reform is nothing more than a useless tax giveaway to “rich CEOs.”
We aim to prove them wrong by showing that business tax reform and other public policy efforts aimed at business growth are helping entrepreneurs expand their businesses, fill jobs and grow their communities.
and contribute your story of jobs filled and jobs created. And help us spread the word by connecting with our Michigan’s Small Business Jobs Insight social media tools on Facebook (Michigan Jobs Insight), Twitter (@MIJobsInsight), LinkedIn and Google+.
Rob Fowler is the CEO of the Small Business Association of Michigan (SBAM).