Hats off to local small business

Burns Lake entrepreneurs regularly make the pages of the Lakes District News, and this week is no exception.

Burns Lake entrepreneurs regularly make the pages of the Lakes District News, and this week is no exception. It can be easy to take them for granted, but they are at the core of what makes this community a great place to live.

Stepping out on your own as an entrepreneur is one of the most challenging things a person can do in our modern economy. The deck isn’t stacked in your favour no matter what sector you consider.

Small retailers must find a sliver light in the shadow of big box stores and their massive buying power. Small industrial go-getters face capital costs and financing that can quickly cripple a nascent business before it’s had a chance to get off the ground and find its feet.

It is so much easier to collect a paycheque and turn your work brain off at the end of the day. The end of the day for local entrepreneurs usually means the beginning of their second job(s) as bookkeeper, business analyst, estimator, purchaser, and so on. It’s fair to assume that the eight hour work day doesn’t exist for small business owners.

Will to succeed – in a word, ambition – does not guarantee success. Ambition pays almost guaranteed dividends as an employee, but for an entrepreneur, hard-work and sleepless nights might not mean a thing for so many reasons beyond their control.

So why do they do it?

Some find great financial reward for their effort, but I bet most small business owners need to find their satisfaction in something other than that.

Anecdotally, most of the small operators whom I’ve talked to over the years say the same thing. They could probably take home the same money for less work if they simply worked for someone else. This doesn’t make them crazy, but it does make them outliers in our economy.

Many small business owners find their satisfaction somewhere else, whether it’s in a sense of being the masters of their own destinies or the satisfaction that comes from creating something out of the seeming nothing of an idea and a vision.

There’s not one village, town or city that wouldn’t be immensely poorer in their absence. Not just in terms of the jobs they provide, but in terms of the social and cultural diversification they bring to local economies and communities.

Think of all the small businesses in Burns Lake, even just the ones you visit on a regular basis. Now add to that mix the local organizations like the cinema, our Lakes District Arts Council, the Burns Lake Minor Hockey Association, the Omineca Ski Club, the Burns Lake Mountain Bike Association, and so on, that benefit greatly from generous local business sponsorship.

Take that collection and imagine Burns Lake without any of them. There wouldn’t be much left. What is left would look more like a large work camp than a community.

While this isn’t to say we owe it to local businesses to shop locally – nobody is more aware than those owners themselves that there has to be real value in shopping local – but, speaking for myself, I do feel compelled to give local business owners a fair shot.

This Friday is Mistletoe Mania, with a Christmas parade and late-night shopping. It’s a great opportunity to check out local businesses and return the support they consistently show to the community.

It’s worth stopping for a moment to think about all the things you love about Burns Lake, and then asking yourself how much of that relies on small, local business owners and their resilient spirit of free enterprise.

 

 

Just Posted

Coastal GasLink gets interim injunction against Unist’ot’en

The LNG pipeline company can start work Monday with enforcement approved by court.

Biking among traditional outdoor sport draws for Burns Lake poll shows

Mountain biking is one of the top four outdoor activities that drew… Continue reading

Climate change affects Nechako watershed, worsens fires, group says

The Nechako watershed is feeling the effects of more intense widlfires and… Continue reading

Oil tanker ban to be reviewed by committee

Indigenous groups for and against Bill C-48 travel to Ottawa to influence the Senate’s decision

Fat tires on thick ice

Burns Lake fat bikers came out to enjoy the conditions on Kager… Continue reading

Trudeau to make it harder for future PM to reverse Senate reforms

Of the 105 current senators, 54 are now independents who have banded together in Independent Senators’ Group

Boeser has 2 points as Canucks ground Flyers 5-1

WATCH: Vancouver has little trouble with slumping Philly side

Man dies after falling from B.C. bridge

Intoxicated man climbed railing, lost his balance and fell into the water below

B.C. animation team the ‘heart’ of new ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’

The animators, largely based in Vancouver, ultimately came up with a creative technique that is drawing praise

Light at the end of the tunnel for UN climate talks

Meeting in Katowice was meant to finalize how countries report their emissions of greenhouses gases

Janet Jackson, Def Leppard, Nicks join Rock Hall of Fame

Radiohead, the Cure, Roxy Music and the Zombies will also be ushered in at the 34th induction ceremony

Supreme Court affirms privacy rights for Canadians who share a computer

Section 8 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects Canadians against unreasonable search and seizure

B.C. fire chief pleads with Ottawa for traumatic stress support

Campbell River fire chief Thomas Doherty presented concerns to federal government

‘I practically begged’: Kootenay woman with breast cancer denied referral to Calgary

Breast cancer patient left to fight disease alone after being denied referral to Calgary

Most Read