ParadoxLabs Honors Our Veterans

Once November rolls around, most people are excited as the holiday season officially kicks off with crisp, cool weather taking over, leaves falling to the ground, and holiday scents filling the air. There is something else in November that grabs my attention and that is Veterans Day. We all are given a unique opportunity on this day to celebrate the contributions and sacrifices made each and every day by our military veterans.

Veterans Day originated as “Armistice Day” on Nov. 11, 1919, the first anniversary marking the end of World War I. Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance, and Nov. 11 became a national holiday beginning in 1938. President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed legislation in 1954 to change the name to Veterans Day as a way to honor those who served in all American wars. The day honors military veterans with parades and speeches across the nation and a remembrance ceremony takes place at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va

According to the Committee on Veteran’s Affairs in the U.S. House of Representatives, the impact our veterans have on the economy is substantial, and is often overlooked.  The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy recently released an encouraging report on veteran-owned businesses. The report, which is based on the latest available data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 Survey of Small Business Owners (released December 2015 and February 2016), shows about 2.52 million businesses in the U.S. majority-owned by veterans.

Almost all of these veteran-owned businesses, at the time (99.9 percent), were small businesses.

 

U.S Veteran Owned Business Statistics

According to the SBA report entitled “Veteran-Owned Businesses and Their Owners (PDF),” small business firms owned by veterans employed 5.03 million people, had an annual payroll of $195 billion and receipts of $1.14 trillion. The veteran-owned firms represented 9.1 percent of all U.S. businesses.

 

California, Texas and Florida had the most veteran-owned businesses respectively, while the highest percent of veteran-owned businesses in their populations were found in South Carolina, New Hampshire and Virginia. Other highlights from the study include:

  • Nearly 30 percent of all veteran-owned firms were in two industry groups: construction and the professional, scientific and technical services group.
  • The industry with the largest share of veteran-owned firms was finance and insurance (13.2 percent), followed by transportation and warehousing (12.1 percent), and construction (11.4 percent).
  • Five industry groups accounted for 71.5 percent of all veteran-owned firm sales: wholesale trade (22.9 percent), retail trade (19.5 percent), manufacturing (12.3 percent), construction (10.1 percent), and professional, scientific, and technical services (7.0 percent).

 

Also, a bigger percentage of veteran-owned businesses were home-based (57.0 percent) compared with other businesses (52.2 percent) in the rest of the population. And the most common method for veterans to become business owners was to start their own businesses themselves.

 

Support for U.S. Military Veterans Entrepreneurship

It’s encouraging to see military veterans take advantage of entrepreneurship opportunities available to them, and to continue to display many of the same qualities and resilience of civilian entrepreneurs. If you are a military veteran who owns a small business or you know some vets, there are many sources of support for veterans, including the SBA’s “Boots to Business” Program. These resources offer varied resources from franchise opportunities to business loans that help combat unemployment among returning veterans, and also demonstrate appreciation to our veterans for their service.

 

“Entrepreneurship is a choice made by many of our men and women in uniform when they move into civilian life,” said Dr. Winslow Sargeant, former Chief Counsel for Advocacy for the SBA, in a previous statement about a similar SBA study. “Knowing more about the factors behind veterans’ self-employment offers opportunities to lay the groundwork for successful ventures.”

As a business, November offers you a unique chance to celebrate and honor our nation’s heroes. Instead of using the holiday just as an excuse to give special discounts and run promotions, write a blog post celebrating and honoring a veteran that is a relative, friend, or customer. Allow the post to show your customers your dedication and commitment to our veterans.

Take things a step further:

  • Donate all or a portion of sales from a particular product to an organization that supports veterans
  • Reward customers who donate to the organization your company is supporting
  • Provide links to organizations within blog posts & on social media to spread awareness
  • Offer Special discounts to veterans and their families on Veteran’s Day
  • Partner with other businesses to offer special deals and promotions to veterans

In addition to celebrating our heroes every day, ParadoxLabs shows their appreciation by supporting non- profit organizations created by our heroes and fundraising efforts to honor our heroes:

The 3rd SPG Veterans Foundation

Wild Bill Guarnere Memorial Statue Fund

These are just a few examples of how to give back to our heroes. Embrace this opportunity, get creative, and share in our efforts to support our veterans and their families this Veterans Day. As Americans, we have so many freedoms that come to us through the sacrifices made by our military men and women every day. We can never thank them enough for their service; but that should never stop us from trying!.

 

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