What is BDC Small Business Week 2022?
They say courage is contagious, and for entrepreneurs, gathering together is how we recharge our energy and mindsets.
It’s for that reason Small Business Week seeks to pay tribute to what entrepreneurs bring to our communities and excite them for the next four quarters to come (it’s also the same reason why we created BizWell Studio).
If you haven’t heard of it yet, BDC Small Business Week is an annual celebration of entrepreneurship and small business owners across Canada. Each year, thousands of entrepreneurs gather to meet, network, and celebrate each other in cities across Canada. It’s all about empowering Canada’s courageous innovators and go-getters and celebrating the impact they’re making on their communities and customers.
Why are small businesses important?
The Canadian economy wouldn’t be the same without Canadian entrepreneurs, which from 2005 to 2018 created 87.7% of net new jobs alone according to Grant Thornton.
Small business owners in Canada face serious economic headwinds including inflation, labour shortages and the supply chain. However, we’re seeing businesses innovate to address these challenges. Some companies are even creating more inclusive workplaces by offering flexible schedules, telecommuting options, and paid parental leave. Others are now fully embracing the digital economy and digital transformation, using modern strategies like content creation to meet consumers where they are and connect with new customers.
The theme for 2022 is “Dare to do things differently: Power up your growth” – a call to find better ways of working and empower the greater business community.
When is Canadian Small Business Week 2022?
The weeklong celebration begins on Monday, October 16 and wraps up on Saturday, October 22. To help celebrate, BizWell Studio is hosting an event in Spruce Grove, Alberta (you can find all the BDC Small Business Events here).
Entrepreneurs will gather at events in Canadian cities hosted by Canadian businesses to talk about business strategy, business resiliency, economic development and economic recovery.
How to Participate in Small Business Week
Small businesses are often overlooked. But if you’re looking to participate in Small Business Week 2022, there are ways you can help promote small businesses in your community throughout the week. Here are some ideas to make it happen.
1. Host an Event
If you’re looking to create the most impact, host an event where people can learn about what makes small businesses great. You could organize a panel discussion or roundtable where experts discuss how to run a successful business or tell their business story — it could be orientated for a specific industry or around a group of local businesses. Maybe you could hold a trivia night or cooking competition with your favourite local companies or a business webinar or live stream for Small Business Week. Whatever you decide to do, make sure you invite the public to join in.
Small business is about community and customer service, so this is our time to pay it forward and celebrate our local business achievements and get together at a critical time.
2. Participate in Events
You don’t always have to host an event – you can participate too. Consider attending one of the many events hosted by your city or local Chamber of Commerce.
3. Post About SMBs
Posting about small businesses you love and appreciating unique entrepreneurs on social media is another way to spread awareness. Share photos of small businesses around town and encourage others to follow their example. Social media is one of the best tools for connecting with other small business owners. Check out #BDCsbw on Twitter to see what other companies are celebrating.
4. Support Local Businesses During Small Business Week
This week, take time out to recognize the hard work of local businesses. Whether it’s buying locally produced goods or supporting local nonprofits, there are many ways to show gratitude for the people behind the scenes.
5. Engage Employees With Employee Appreciation Days
If you’re a business owner with a team, employee appreciation days are a great way to encourage employees to go above and beyond while showing your appreciation. You can host a lunchtime celebration or give each employee a gift card to spend however they choose. Or send them to an event in your area for Small Business Week!
6. Thank those who support you
Thanking customers helps to build client loyalty. People are less likely to shop with companies that don’t thank them for doing business with them.
This is why many businesses send out thank you cards to their customers, thanking them for choosing their products or services. However, it doesn’t stop there.
You can go one step further and write a personal note to each of your customers for the theme of Small Business Week. Using marketing automation, your personalized note could be easily added to receipts and thank you emails for the week (“Thank you for supporting our small business during Small Business Week #BDCsbw”).
Sending a handwritten thank-you card to a prospect or client is a great way to show appreciation for their business as well. Not only does it make you look like a pro, but it also makes you memorable. Plus, it builds trust and goodwill among your clients.
In addition to sending a handwritten thank you card, consider including a small gift such as chocolates or flowers. These gifts are thoughtful and appreciated, and they help to establish a positive relationship.
7. Mentor an entrepreneur
Mentorship is one of the most powerful tools to help young people succeed. In fact, it’s been proven that those who are mentored tend to outperform those who aren’t. So why don’t we do more to support entrepreneurship?
The BDC has several programs for all entrepreneurs. The goal of the BDC is to support small and medium-sized businesses in all industries, to learn from successful entrepreneurs, gain valuable skills and experience, and ultimately launch their own businesses and help grow them.
If you’re a successful entrepreneur and you haven’t been mentoring the next up-and-coming young business owner, you’re missing out on a rewarding experience. We believe that if we have mentors for every stage of our growth we will have more balance and wellness in our lives. That’s why we created the Founder’s Club on BizWell Studio, to get connected and find each other.
Giving back to the next generation of entrepreneurs not only helps them achieve success, but can also help you stay sharp, motivated, and inspired.
8. Take time to reflect
Business owners are often too busy running their companies to stop and look around. They spend most of their time thinking about what needs to be done today, rather than planning for tomorrow. But there is no reason why you shouldn’t do just that. Taking time out to reflect on the state of your business and where it might go next can help you make decisions that will lead to success.
To be successful, business owners need to plan for the future. This means taking time out to reflect on the state of their businesses and where they might go next. By doing this, they can make decisions that will lead to success.
9. Recognize yourself and other entrepreneurs
Recognition is important to build self-confidence and inspire others. You don’t have to win every award out there to receive positive feedback. In fact, it’s better to apply for awards and recognition because it helps spread the word about your company.
Nominations are great ways to gain exposure and increase brand awareness. They’re also a good way to show off what you do well. And, most importantly, they give you the chance to shine.
The key is to make sure you submit quality nominations. If you send in a nomination form filled with spelling mistakes, grammar errors, or incomplete information, you’ll look unprofessional. Make sure you take the time to proofread your submission and double-check everything.
10. Invest in your team’s growth
One of the most important factors in determining whether a business feels appreciated is how much its employees contribute to his or her workplace. If you want your team members to feel valued, make sure they know what they bring to the table every single day. Small business week is the perfect time to pay it forward.
As an SMB owner, you can also choose to give your team the gift on continued learning. Employees are constantly learning new things. They’re always trying to improve their skill sets and increase their professional expertise. To do this, they often look to online resources like blogs, online courses, books, videos and webinars. As a small business employer, you can provide your employees with additional benefits.
Half of all small businesses fail
There are many reasons why small businesses fail, but one of the most common ones is the lack of capital. BDC provides financing for businesses at all stages.
Another reason small businesses fail is a lack of awareness. People often don’t know about them, which leads to less money coming into the startup ecosystem. Pandemics are also deadly for small businesses, as the COVID-19 pandemic has shown. And finally, many startups don’t receive much attention or funding because there aren’t many people aware of what they do.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused many small businesses to close up shop. But there are some entrepreneurs who are finding ways to keep their doors open during this difficult time.
Greater awareness is needed
Startups and small businesses often don’t receive much attention or funding because there aren’t many people aware of what they do. This lack of visibility leads to less money coming into the startup and small business ecosystem.
This is a problem because successful small businesses are the backbone of the Canadian economy. They create jobs, spur innovation and drive economic growth.
Small Business Week seeks to solve this problem by increasing awareness of startups and small businesses.