Top Five Cities To Open A Small Business
By: Tina Samuels
If you’re planning on starting your own business, you might not want to start it in your hometown. Some cities in the U.S. just aren’t known for doing well with certain industries.
For the highest chance of success, consider moving your business to another location in the country, whether it’s in your state or all the way on the other side of the country.
Here’s a look at the top five cities in the U.S. to consider starting your business in:
There is a population in Dallas of approximately 6.5 million people and about 2,000 small businesses per 100,000 people. The large population is part of the reason why starting a business here is a great choice. The cost of living for self-employed individuals is also slightly less than the national average, so you’re not paying as much to live in Dallas if you don’t already. They have lower business taxes and 20 of theFortune 500 companies are in Dallas.
2. Kansas City, KS
Another city that is a great place for starting a business is Kansas City, Kansas (the other Kansas City). There is a population of approximately 145, 000, with a low cost of living for those self-employed. The area is currently undergoing development for a wireless district downtown, collaborative space for small businesses and reducing costs for new businesses. This is all good news if you want to start a business here.
Atlanta, Georgia has a population just in the metro area of 5.4 million people. They have 1.7 percent cost of living under the national average, which is a great sign for small business owners. Many large corporations are in Atlanta, including Coca-Cola and AT&T. But this doesn’t mean small start-ups don’t also do well in the city. With a large population, big-city appeal and cheap living costs, it is excellent for small businesses just getting started. Georgia Tech is also in Atlanta, which draws in the young crowd if your business is catering to this segment of the population.
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If you’re interested in moving to Colorado, consider opening your business in Denver. This city has a slightly higher cost of living above the national average, but they have a large population and appeal to boutiques, restaurants and other small businesses. Approximately 95 percent of Denver’s economy is made up of small businesses with 50 employees or less. For you, this means starting a small company in a place where residents choose to shop at these local businesses as opposed to box stores or corporations.
Lastly, there is Seattle, Washington if you want to start your business on the west coast. Seattle is one of the best cities in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. They have a large population and many small businesses that are thriving. Seattle is also home of the best job market in the country. While their living costs are well above the national average, they have very little business taxes and most small businesses do very well in the city.
By living in one of these cities, you benefit from being near people who are accustomed to shopping at small, local businesses.
About the Author: Tina Samuels writes on small business, social media, video hosting online, and home improvement.
Marketing matters: from IBM to Kyndryl
Prior to joining Kyndryl as Chief Marketing Officer, Maria had a 25-year career at IBM, most recently as the tech giant’s CMO where she oversaw all marketing professionals and activities across North America, Canada and Latin America. She has held senior global marketing positions in a variety of disciplines and business units across IBM, most notably strategic initiatives in Smarter Cities and Watson Customer Engagement, as well as leading teams in services, business analytics, and mobile and industry solutions. She is known for her work with teams to leverage data, analytics and cloud technologies to build deeper engagements with customers and partners.
With a passion for marketing, business and people, and a recognized expert in data-driven marketing and brand engagement, Maria talks to Business Chief about her new role, her leadership style and what success means to her.
You've recently moved from IBM to Kyndryl, joining as CMO. Tell us about this exciting new role?
I’m Chief Marketing Officer for Kyndryl, the independent company that will be created following the separation from IBM of its Managed Infrastructure Services business, expected to occur by the end of 2021. My role is to plan, develop, and execute Kyndryl's marketing and advertising initiatives. This includes building a company culture and brand identity on which we base our marketing and advertising strategy.
We have an amazing opportunity ahead at Kyndryl to create a company brand that will stand apart in the market by leading with our people first. Once we are an independent company, each Kyndryl employee will advance the vital systems that power human progress. Our people are devoted, restless, empathetic, and anticipatory – key qualities needed as we build on existing customer relationships and cultivate new ones. Our people are at the heart of this business and I am deeply hopeful and excited for our future.
What experiences have helped prepare you for this new opportunity?
I’ve had a very rich and diverse career history at IBM that has lasted 25+ years. I started out in sales but landed explored opportunities at IBM in different roles, business units, geographies, and functions. Marketing and business are my passions and I landed on Marketing because it allowed me to utilize both my left and right brain, bringing together art and science. In college, I was no tonly a business major, but an art major. I love marketing because I can leverage my extensive knowledge of business, while also being able to think openly and creatively.
The opportunities I was given during my time at IBM and my natural curiosity have led me to the path I’m on now and there’s no better next career step than a once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity to help launch a company. The core of my role at Kyndryl is to create a culture centered on our people and growing up in my career at IBM has allowed me to see first-hand how to prioritize people and ensure they are at the heart of progress in everything Kyndryl will do.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I believe that people aren't your greatest assets, they are your only assets. My platform and background for leadership has always been grounded in authenticity to who I am and centered on diversity and inclusion. I immigrated to the US from Chile when I was 10 years old and so I know the power and beauty that comes from leaning into what makes you different from other people, and that's what I want every person in my marketing organization to feel – the value in bringing their most authentic self to work every day. The way our employees feel when they show up for themselves authentically is how they will also show up for our customers, and strong relationships drive growth.
I think this is especially true in light of a world forever changed by the pandemic. Living through such an unprecedented time has reinforced that we are all humans. We can't lead or care for one another without empathy and I think leaders everywhere have been reminded of this.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
When I was growing up as an immigrant in North Carolina, I often wanted to be just like everyone else. But my mother always told me: Be unique, be memorable – you have an authentic view and experience of the world that no one else will ever have, so don't try to be anyone else but you.
What does success look like to you?
I think the concept of success is multi-faceted. From a career perspective, being in a job where you're respected and appreciated, and where you can see how your contributions are providing value by motivating your teams to be better – that's success! From a personal perspective, there is no greater accomplishment than investing in the next generation. I love mentoring younger professionals – they are the future. I want my legacy as a leader to include providing value in work culture, but also in leaving a personal impact on the lives of professionals who will carry the workforce forward. Finding a position in life with a job and company that offers me a chance at all of that is what success looks like to me.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
I've always been a naturally curious person and it's easy for me to over-commit to projects that pique my interest. I've learned over years of practice how to manage that, so to my younger self I’d say… prioritize the things that are most important, and then become amazing at those things.