Micro Firms and Start-Ups Essential to Economy

I found some interesting data that finally supports what many of us have been thinking: that solopreneurs and very small businesses are accounting for much of the job creation in the U.S. According to new data from the Kauffman Foundation and the US Census Bureau, as highlighted in Inc. Magazine, firms with one to four employees have accounted for an average of 20 percent of new jobs each year from 1980-2005. During that time, start-ups accounted for 3% of total employment. While that doesn’t seem like much, the average annual net employment growth over the same period was 1.8 percent, meaning that job creation would be contracting during those 25 years rather than expanding without these micro firms. Over the timeframe of the study, it was found that “while startups do tend to decline slightly during downturns, they remained fairly robust in even the most severe of the sample period’s recessions.” And according to Robert E. Litan, vice president of […]


A Recession is the Perfect Time to Start a Business

Seems like we’re in a recession. We’ve probably been in it for longer than we realize and may stay in this down cycle for longer than any of us would prefer. But we’ve gone through it before, and the economy will grow again. The story of Visible Logic It was during the last recession of 2001 that I started Visible Logic. In the summer of 2001 I was working at Smith Design. The dot-com bubble was bursting and we could feel things slowing down. I was laid off. I had been thinking about starting my own design firm “someday.” Once I had enough experience. After assessing the economic landscape I realized I was not going to be finding a full time design job in the near future. So, I could either freelance for other studios or start my own. Great timing I finally decided to pull the trigger. In fact, after having a few weeks to decompress, I told everyone […]


4 Branding Tips for Solopreneurs

If you’re really ready to start your business consider these four branding tips: 1. Consider a name other than your own. Many people starting their own businesses are setting up one-person consulting companies. In this context they will be getting most of their work based on their own reputations. In fact, they may even get work from their previous employers. However, it’s best to start thinking of your business as something more than just yourself. When I started my design firm I didn’t just say Emily Brackett, Graphic Designer. I even went beyond Brackett Design. I came up with a name of an entity—Visible Logic—that is more than me (even though it started as a sole propietorship). Your business name allows you to built a brand that is bigger than just you, and gives you more room to grow. This can be especially helpful when you make sales calls. Rather than saying “This is Amy Smith” you can say “This […]


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