There are a couple of premises that seem to ring true regardless of your political party affiliation:
1) Job growth is key for economic recovery and development
2) Small and middle sized business are the best job producers
So it would make sense to spur small businesses right?
You and I both know that we can’t count on political leadership for much in this area (being the jaded, bitter, quasi-tired people that we are). It seems clear that congress is unable and/or unwilling to weigh in with any substantive programs or proposals. So where do we turn for real help to incubate small businesses and bring back the culture of entrepreneurship that makes America great?
Yup. Howard Schultz, our nation’s leader/barista is not going to wait for the politicians to work it out. Instead he is partnering with the Opportunity Finance Network to launch “Create Jobs for the USA.” Right now you can go online at www.createjobsforUSA.org and make a donation. For $5 or more, you will get a cool red, white, and blue bracelet that reads “Indivisible” and Starbucks will match donations so that $5 turns into $35. The money will be loaned out via a nationwide network of 180 Opportunity Finance institutions.
So what are waiting for? Let’s dust off those great ideas! Let’s find the cocktail napkin with the brilliant plan! Let’s clean out the garage and get ready to make the next great business! The money we need is out there.
Clearly, Howard Schultz is Evolutionary. This is just the kind of hair-brained “how hard can it be” thinking that Evolutionaries are famous for. I am all for the Create Jobs USA effort. But I don’t think it will work; because we will soon discover the barrier is really not about money.
The big ingredient that is missing right now is courage.
Starting a new business takes guts, and tenacity, and illogical bull-headed vision. If you have your act together well enough to apply for one of these loans—you are already way ahead of the curve. The fact is that most people never even share their ideas. They block themselves with feelings of inadequacy and ignorance. A friend of mine who is a talented consultant has a great idea for a business. I suggested she develop her idea and seek one of these funding opportunities and she replied; “If I thought of it I am sure others have too and they are probably smart enough to know why the idea will never work.”
She is smart, but she has all kinds of negative self-talk sabotaging her ability to take action.
The bottom line is that she is acting on the basis of her fears—not a clear vision of the future. The root of the fear is a pervasive culture of illusory-perfection. It’s like comparing yourself to the models in the magazines. We don’t try because we might fail. And if we fail we are not perfect.
The other big problem is we have this belief that we have to be experts in everything. It turns out that you can usually network a little and find all kinds of people who have the complementary talents you need to make your business work. That is how the whole “job” thing works!
So, muster up the courage and start soft pitching your great idea for a business. Do your homework. Refine your idea. Prototype and test your ideas. Make agreements with your future business partners. And help and support others to do the same.
Donate some courage to the entrepreneurs in your life—and some money to www.createjobsforUSA.org.
I hoist my Grande Coffee (Pike Place Blend Drip-with-Room) to you Mr. Schultz for your crazy-like-a-fox approach to jump starting the US economy. This is Evolutionary zeal at its finest.