“In BC, small business is BIG business” (Small Business BC). According to Small Business BC, small business accounts for 98% of all businesses in the province, and employs over 1 million people (Annual Report 2016-2017).

October marks Small Business Month throughout BC and celebrates the contribution of small businesses and entrepreneurs to our local economies and communities. What a perfect time to draw attention to some of our own small business members.

From an award-winning home designer and builder, to a certified organic farm that also provides vocational placement for adults in the community living sector, our business members are the driving force behind a wide range of organizations that power our local communities. We’re passionate about building a strong local economy and these are some of the people with the most skin in the game.

A quick scroll through Instagram will have you eyeballs deep in terms like #hustle #startup and #entrepreneurlife. Being in business for yourself is very on trend.  But the truth is, being an entrepreneur is not for everyone. Have you heard the saying ‘work smarter, not harder’? I hate to break it to you, but as an entrepreneur you must work both smart and hard. It’s ‘pound the pavement, work evenings and weekends, forgo other opportunities, and focus to the point of obsession, hard work.’ And don’t forget about the added pressure of holding people’s livelihoods in your hands.

So why on earth do some people do it? For many, it’s more of a calling than a choice. They feel a need to create, and seeing their dream realized is the reward. For others, the call of an entrepreneurial life is practical, their personalities or desired lifestyles don’t lend themselves to a more traditional 9-5 role. Whatever the reason, for them, it is the perfect path.

Over the next month we’ll be releasing weekly interviews with 5 of our business members in our series aptly titled Hustle Hard – The BIG Job of Small Business.  We’ll ask them questions on what drives and inspires them, what they’ve learned over the years, where they’ve come from and where they’re planning on going next.

We’ll also be asking them what it’s like doing business with a credit union. We like to think credit unions are the perfect fit for small business organizations, after all, many credit unions started as small businesses themselves. Our cooperative principles mean our commercial banking department makes your business their business. Simply, we’re here to help these businesses, and all our members create more local money.

Because the more we create together, the more vibrant our economy and our communities become. That’s local money for local good.