StephensStriving for Growth
George W. Bush or John Kerry? By the time you receive this issue, we’ll know who won the 2004 presidential election. And in these tough economic times, I have no doubt that those of you who own independent service organizations (ISOs) and those of you thinking about starting one paid special attention to both candidates’ agendas for small businesses. Bush’s plan involved continuing to lower taxes for small business owners and tripling the amount they could write off as expenses in the hopes of bolstering the economy and creating new jobs. John Kerry proposed investing an additional $170 million that he says could help make billions in long-term capital and equity available for small businesses.

While the candidates disagree on process, they obviously both recognize the important role small business plays in the economy. Small businesses, ISOs among them, create 75% of the new jobs in America each year and employ 50% of the country’s private work force, according to the US Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Advocacy.

But it’s not simple to get started, and it’s even more difficult to stay afloat. According to the SBA Office of Advocacy, in 2003, more businesses closed than started up (584,800 compared to 572,900). The good news is that bankruptcies in 2003 declined by 9.1% compared with 2002. But how do you get started? Well, you can begin by reading our cover story on page 20. While government Web sites provide a dizzying number of tips and checklists on starting your own business, this month’s 24×7 provides specialized tips and suggestions for the biomed industry.

As I take over as editor of 24×7, I feel I can relate to those of you striving to open and grow your businesses. Just as you mold your companies to fit the needs of the market, I am working hard every day to learn more about you and your needs and those of the industry in order to develop and publish pertinent and helpful articles. While you endeavor to locate and hire the best employees, I am looking to draw in the very best in the industry to contribute to this magazine.
I know your needs include information on new technologies, education, certification, and how to do your jobs more efficiently, but if there are topics you would like to see covered, please let me know. I encourage you to call or write with suggestions, comments, or just to say hello. With your help, 24×7 will continue to provide the informative, engaging monthly articles and features you have come to expect.

See you in December at the North Carolina Biomedical Association’s Annual Symposium & Expo in Pinehurst!

c01_sig.gif (2601 bytes)
Kelly Stephens, Editor, 24×7
[email protected]