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BizReport : Advertising archives : July 28, 2017

Expert: How small businesses and towns can compete for success

Small towns are filled with small businesses, but many SMBs are worried that the advancement of technology - including ecommerce - will kill their way of life. According to one expert, it doesn't have to. Here are some ways to prevent the decline of small and rural communities.

by Kristina Knight

Kristina: What can be done about population and business decline in rural communities?

Doug Griffiths, MBA and Founder & CEO, 13 Ways Inc: This is another one of those questions that could be its own book, and thankfully there is one - 13 Ways to Kill Your Community. Our decline is often more a product of our own doing than we realize or care to admit. We often blame the economy, or the government, or technology for our challenges, yet the solution often rests within our own hands. We wonder how to keep youth in our community, yet we run our own community down and tell young people they have to leave if they want a future. We lament the lost of business, yet we don't adapt to changing realities in ways that could help businesses prosper. The next 20 years present a ripe opportunity for communities to see a re-invigoration if they choose to adapt, rather than lamenting the good old days. In the end, my experience and research has confirmed that a community of people that decides it will succeed cannot be stopped by any government, and a community of people that believes it is destined to fail will prove itself right everytime.

Kristina: What are the five necessary steps a community needs to undertake to find success?

Doug: Getting real change in a community often requires the same steps that are required for a person to experience real change. If a person is looking to lose weight or get in shape, or change their lives in any way, it requires five steps. First you have to admit there is a problem and that what you are doing isn't working. Second, you need to decide you really want to change, to get different results. Third, you have to follow through with action. Fourth, you have to get back up after you fall down or fail, and you will. Finally, it is important to review what you are doing at some point to be sure you are still headed in the right direction. It doesn't matter if you are a person wanting to make change in your life, or a community wanting to change their path, the five steps apply if you want to find success.

Tags: 13 Ways Inc, Doug Griffiths, SMB tips, SMB trends

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