Leo Tolstoy posited at the start of Anna Karenina, “All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” How about family-owned businesses (FOBs)? They represent 16% of small businesses in the U.S. Are all the happy ones alike, and the unhappy ones uniquely miserable?
talk small, hear small, eat, sleep and breathe small. Because when you’re trying to connect with a small business, you must understand everything about those who run them.
A mother has gone from being an audit specialist to running a biotech company in an effort to help her daughter.
Karen Aiach, founder and CEO of Lysogene, on her journey: “The biggest challenge for me at the beginning was that I was not a scientist or a clinician or gene therapist. I was a mother taking responsibility to build a program and manage it.”
Even if it’s not a family operation, there’s still a little Mom and Pop in every small business. Three in four businesses say they’ve helped employees with personal matters, and one in two say they treat employees like family.
Third-generation owner/barber Kari Eaker contributes to her community economically as well as culturally. AT&T proudly salutes small businesses everywhere with the Long Live Small Business campaign.
“Small business is not for the faint of heart.”
Furniture maker Ryan Johnson gives a glimpse from the trenches: sleepless nights, weight loss, occasional panic attacks and the chance “to build a name for myself and my sons.”