Small business, big impact

Blog post by Whitney Harmel

Whitney Harmel is the director of strategic partnerships at the Maryland Chamber of Commerce. Through her career history and past role as chair of the Emerging Leaders United Council, she has over a decade of sales, leadership, and relationship-building experience.

 

A recent report conducted by the U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy revealed that small businesses represent 99.5 percent of Maryland’s businesses. To me, this statistic was no surprise, but it did reinforce the fact that small businesses are a major economic driver for the state and serve as the backbone of our communities.

We are primed to continue the trend. Incubators across our state are ripe with entrepreneurs who spend their time innovating and creating opportunities to effect real change.

Small businesses are hiring and employing Marylanders, creating steady job opportunities, and putting us on the map in both a national and global context as local businesses expand. In 2015 alone, small firms represented 26.9 percent of Maryland’s $9.1 billion in international export, per the SBA report.

It’s no secret that we support business at the Maryland Chamber. We pride ourselves in working to shape the business community, create jobs, and foster economic sustainability and development. I’m fortunate to experience the influence of small businesses on the state as we work hand in hand to share their voices.

Here are a few local small businesses I’ve got my eye on:

HEART TO BEAT

This business provides First Aid/CPR/AED training services to equip anyone with the skills to step in during an emergency. It is also a relatively new business, founded in 2016 by young business professional, CEO Scott Kuhlman.

CODE IN THE SCHOOLS

Not only are they training and educating young Marylanders for ever-growing coding and computing jobs, they are also providing a service aimed at targeting one of the state’s most tragic health issues— the opioid epidemic. Code in the Schools, in addition to their educational program, has created an app to notify users of a “bad batch.”

MICHELE’S GRANOLA

A Maryland favorite! Hand-baked, from scratch  in Maryland, Michele’s business hires locally and operates in a 100 percent wind-powered facility. This small business is feeding, shaping and creating a sustainable, eco-friendly business, thriving here in our backyards.

Like what you read?

Check out more of Whitney’s business to business blogs: #MDCCB2B

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