Entrepreneurs & Small Businesses

As I said yesterday I made my campaign stop on Day 70 of Campaign Smile at a small business instead of one of the monster retailers.  Just as one of my readers thought, it was a very rewarding experience.  The place was a large antique shop with countless treasures to investigate….

1. The first woman I encountered was apparently one of the employees.  In response to my smile she granted me a great smile of her own as she said hello to me.

2. Another woman working a register near the back of the store smiled at me.  Then she saw my smile and her yet small smile expanded into a genuine grin that revealed all her teeth.  It was beautiful and I could see the immediate impact of my efforts.

3. The couple that passed me during their shopping was quite reserved.  The gentleman did, however, nod and say hi, though it was without a smile.

4. Another man with a mustache simply scowled at me when I smiled in his direction.  He apparently needed the interaction more than anyone else in the place so I hope it helped.

Half of the people I engaged smiled in return, though it was only the employees that did so.  I have been putting a lot of thought into the difference between large and small businesses since yesterday.  One conclusion I came to was that bringing joy to the employees of a store, while always beneficial to the business and the customers, goes farther in a small store.  When an employee is dealing with more than a hundred customers in any one shift it will take a lot less time for something to come up and cause them to question or abandon their improved mood.  In a small establishment, though, the employee will see a lot fewer people and will more likely be able to retain that good mood and pass it along to others.  Plus, customers have different attitudes to conglomerate, faceless department stores than they do toward small, mom and pop places.  With 2 more smiles today on my smile campaign stop the total is now 228!
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