Redefining success for small business


Do small business owners ever get to the point where they feel successful? Small business owner Debbie Logan (Organic, Natural and Whole-Food Emporium) says few of them do.

“So much of our time is spent feeling like there is such a long road still to walk and we focus on all the things we still need to get more right, all the growth we still need to achieve, grappling with never really feeling like we’re there and probably the worst – that being small means being not enough,” says Logan.

If we truly want to measure the success of a small business, we can measure it by so much more than size.

Logan points out that in our linear understanding, small generally means ‘on the way to being large’. But what if being small is the point? Because small businesses can (and do) have more of an impact than large businesses.

For one, small businesses tend to have better relationships with their customers and their suppliers, and they can do more for their customers more quickly. “Small means you can be more flexible, you can connect directly to customers, listen to them, engage closely with your suppliers, change your mind quickly and respond to customers quickly,” says Logan.

There’s also authenticity and sincerity that small businesses have that’s very difficult for big business to emulate. Logan shares her business journey openly with her customers – they know the relationships she has with her suppliers and the challenges she has had in her pursuit to supply quality products to her customers. “I was always emphatic that I would just be myself and be honest and open about what we were doing and take our customer with us,” adds Logan.

Small business owners go through enormous personal and skills growth – and this never abates. Very often they are forced to take on and learn about areas of business that they wouldn’t normally have had they been in a corporate position with defined roles and responsibilities. Small business owners are accountable and proactive – they naturally have qualities that are enviable in any employee.

The courage and ingenuity of small business inspire others – providing hope to a new generation of individuals, thinkers, and dreamers.


Take out: Don’t always measure your success in numbers – in size and figures. Small businesses are successful in ways that big businesses can probably never be. As a small business owner, you are better positioned to develop real relationships in your business and to be authentic and true to yourself.

Author: Nicky Grandin

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1 comment
  • I agree, most do not know what success will look like. They base success on the happiness of the customer instead on their own happiness. You come first. Without customers your business will not run, without you, it will not exist.

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