A message from the Founders, Hannah & Ariel Redmond
As two people who worked the majority of our careers to date in corporate America for very big brands in Manhattan, we often hear people comment on the transition to being an entrepreneur like, “wow it must be so great: you can make your own hours, YOU make all the rules!” But being a small business entrepreneur, as anyone in this special little club knows, is the absolute hardest job we have ever had.
We basically went from working 9-6 to working 24/7!
As a small business owner, every day comes with new challenges you need to figure out with very limited resources to help you solve them. It’s like trying to solve a puzzle that mysteriously changes the end design every few days and some pieces are thrown in that will never, ever fit, and in the end, there are always just a few missing pieces.
And that’s without a once-in-a century pandemic. Ask any small business owner how their past couple of years running the business have been, and I guarantee you’ll see a look of exhaustion and anxiety wash over their face as the various hurdles they’ve faced in the past 24 or so months flash through their mind.
Figuring out if and how we could stay open and operational, constantly worrying about the health and safety of our employees, wondering if we’ll make enough sales to make payroll, spending hours and hours on hold hoping to earn COVID-19 related financial aid, dealing with angry customers as supply chain issues disrupted our service, not being able to financially contribute to our households to save money in the business….these are just a few of the things we’ve had to figure out during this time.
Many small businesses didn’t make it. Many more will not make it through the winter. Some lucky ones will. Here are just a few reasons why supporting small businesses when you shop this holiday is so important:
- Small businesses fuel job creation and the American economy. Small businesses in the U.S. provide millions of jobs to Americans, 61 million jobs to be exact. Small business owners employ 47% of the entire American workforce, and since small businesses comprise 99% of all U.S. businesses, a hit to small businesses is a hit to the entire U.S. economy.
- Small businesses tend to support other small businesses. Entrepreneurship inspires and facilitates more entrepreneurship. For example, online curators amplify even MORE small and diverse brands, bringing their products to new audiences.
- Small businesses tend to be more sustainable & ethical. Many small businesses have a shorter manufacturer-to-consumer journeys, resulting in a more sustainable supply chain with less of a carbon footprint. Additionally, small businesses are often makers, producing goods locally OR are resellers of products made by small-batch and local brands. Smaller businesses also may have the means to manufacture and source locally and ethically because of smaller quantities.
- Shopping small means you get personalized service (and products). Looking for personalized service? Small businesses tend to treat customers better! Every customer matters SO much to a small business, we genuinely can’t afford to NOT pay attention to your feedback. Some of the biggest perks of shopping small and local are the personalized customer service and the unique items you come across. Small business owners don't build their own business from scratch just for kicks - they do it because they are passionate about keeping their products and services exclusive to their customers and community.
- Small businesses give back. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) conducted a survey a couple years ago and found that 75 percent of small business owners donate some portion of their profits — about six percent on average — to charitable organizations each year. So every time you shop small and local, a portion of your dollars may also be donated to a local charity.
We all SAY we want to shop small, right? Well, this holiday season we challenge you to put your money where your mouth is - consider shopping early for gifts so you CAN shop small without that coveted prime delivery, and support your local economy to keep millions of Americans employed. Give small businesses a fighting chance this winter.
Stay Happy this Holiday,
Hannah & Ariel Redmond
Sisters & Founders, Happy Box®