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Economic Development is . . . (increasing the flow) of capital through the community and reducing its leakage.


John was traveling from New York City on his way to Los Angeles and he was starving!! He took a wrong turn and was stuck in a small rural town, lost and hungry. He was happy when he saw a small restaurant coming up on his right. John quickly pulled over, parked his car, and walked inside.

John noticed a blackboard with a sign written in yellow chalk, “Today’s Special: Vegetable Soup with Fried Chicken and Grilled Vegetables.” “I’ll take the special”, said John to the waitress when she came to take his order.

A few minutes after receiving his order John called her over, he was fuming mad. “IS THIS THE SPECIAL!? It says vegetable soup, BUT THERE ARE NO VEGETABLES! It says grilled vegetables, BUT THEY AREN’T GRILLED THEY ARE BAKED!?  And it says fried chicken, AND THE CHICKEN ISN’T FRIED!

The waitress was not used to city folks and their attitudes and frankly she was not going to put up with this behavior. “Honey,” said the waitress looking down at John over her glasses, “that is what makes it so special!!!”

Webster defines the word special “better, greater, or otherwise different from what is usual (unusual). And it was American entrepreneur, Jim Rohn that said ““If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary.”

Building a business is analogous to Rohn’s quote. What are you willing to put on the line and risk for the reward – time, family, money or pride?

The dismal statistics about new business failure get quoted all the time (85-90%). If you mention at Thanksgiving that you’re thinking about starting a business, your Aunt May will definitely dredge them up.

But gross statistics compiled by government agencies can’t give you the picture of what those “failures” look like. They don’t tell you how many were experiments. They don’t tell you what the “failures” taught the business owners. They don’t tell you how many of those businesses changed into something else — something more profitable. They don’t tell you how motivated the owners were. They don’t tell you what the owners went on to do next.

Now don’t get me wrong, I realize that many new businesses don’t make it. Many of them start out with fatally high overhead — rent & employees are expensive. It isn’t easy…. Nothing good ever is. You do have a place to go to help you discover if your idea is special enough to succeed. If you ever considered owning or operating your own business in Tama County – it is time to think about letting Tama County Economic Development help you out. Contact our office and we can provide information on how we can help you see if the risk is worth the reward. Contact us at (641) 484-3108, or info@tamacountyiowa.org.


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